Jakarta Uncovered: All About Sex Industry in Jakarta

The book of "Jakarta Uncovered" by Nori Andriyani

"In the sex war, thoughtlessness is the weapon 
of the male, vindictiveness of the female"
-Cyril Connolly-

Tis 'brave' book titled "Jakarta Uncovered: Membongkar Kemaksiatan, Membangun Kesadaran Baru" written by a female activist Nori Andriyani, who is troubled by wrong perceptions about sex industry in Jakarta and Indonesia. She ia aim to rectify it. Indeed this book was published in 2010 and the data may not be relevant anymore. At least the data able to show us as an illustration what happen in a five-year study between 2010-2016, related to sex industry in Jakarta and Indonesia which claimed as religious country.

The book opened with the story of Siti, a wife who managed to uncover the 'fishy' activities of her husband, Budi. One day, Budi came home late at night and claimed to be overtime from a credit card bill worth IDR 2.6 million at the initial place, US in Jakarta. Siti studied the place via the internet and realized that her husband had made a transaction in the brothel. After being urged her husband confessed that he had bought sex services with his co-workers. Budi's confession was also quite shocking to Siti who suspected that there had been an oddity in her husband for the past 6 months.

It turned out that during that time Budi carried out layers of lies to cover up his addiction to buy sex services from female at nightclubs. Budi claimed that he tried to stop but could not and this destroyed Siti. Their domestic life was at the edge, even Budi had to be handled by a psychologist because he was sexually dependent.

Sex addiction is an obsession and preoccupation with sex, where everything is sexually defined. This dependence is progressive and fatal and destructive in addicts, other people and those who have ties with it. People with sex dependency become increasingly progressive in lying, thinking about personal interests, isolated, full of fear, confused, numb, dualistic, controlling, perfectionist, resisting the existence of problems, losing sanity, blaming others and dysfunctional. Sex dependence in Budi's case is part of the massive prostitution business in Jakarta which is the main topic of this book.
Map of human trafficking, especially women and girl in Indonesia

Nori defines prostitution as an activity for men to buy female sex services, a perception that is generally seen as unstoppable because it has lived and developed thousands of years ago. In fact, not a few who accept it as part of life. This is where Nori began her role in writing this book, where she wanted to raise new awareness about activities that were considered common as a problem. He also quoted Victor Maralek, a Canadian journalist of Ukrainian descent who revealed trafficking crimes for the sex industry that sold poor girls from Eastern Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union to various parts of the world. He wrote about the bestiality of his own people in this dirty industry.

According to Maralek, prostitution is the oldest form of oppression in the world (the world's oldest oppression) rather than agreeing to the public announcement that prostitution is the oldest occupation in the world. Prostitution is not a job, because no one will be proud to say his job as a sex service provider.

We might ask why prostitution can't be stopped? Why are the numbers of prostitute increasing every year? Why is this business getting bigger and stronger? Why can't anyone tear down this dirty business?

In this book it is stated that in 1995 there are 72,000 people were prostituted in various brothel, and 30% of them were children. In 1998 the number increased to 150,000. In 2003 the number increased between 190,000-270,000 people with the consequence that 1 sex worker served 7-10 men. This amount represents 30% of the total number of victims of human trafficking in the sex industry in the world in the same year, around 800,000-900,000 people.

This means that the victims of this industry in Indonesia are very significant. With this amount we can calculate that the number of male buyers of sex workers is much greater. Roughly there are more than 1-2 million men who are buyers of sex services.

What makes men buy sex services? In this book, Nori explains some of the factors that make men buy sex services, even addiction to continue buying as if it were done.

1 | Money
Money is power. And the man's power over property ownership gave him a dominant position over women, especially his wife and children. With money men build up their power and are hegemonic towards women as an opposite sex. When he issued to buy sex services, he felt it was because of his money, the results of his hard work and for a little pleasure.

2 | Cheating on the body, not cheating on the heart
In our society these words are very popular, "You may cheat on your body, don't cheat on your heart," as a justification that sleeping with a sex workers is a legitimate act and can be forgiven because you don't use love, don't use your heart. Such men are those who are addicted to sex, so they cannot separate their hearts and bodies. How can he say love to his wife if he has sex with another woman in exchange for money? What if his wife does that with a sex-giving man?

3 | Sex Variation
In our society naughty men and masks are considered as fairness. "A naughty man is reasonable, his name is also a man," so people can still accept if men have sex outside of marriage. Such a man has never even been labeled as a bitch, a bad guy,  dirty or not a virgin. While the same thing would be a killer sword for women. Because of that, people feel that they have no problem with men "with a history of rape" or male female players, but are very sensitive to women who are rape victims, even widows because they are no longer virgins.

4 | Women are good versus bitch
Men who buy sex services distinguish the position of love and sex, wives and prostitutes. He occupies his wife as a household queen, a sacred, unruly person who manages household affairs that has nothing to do with naughty sex in a husband and wife relationship. Because of respect for his wife, he bought sex services to enjoy sex that was different from what he enjoyed with his wife. He enjoyed his fantasies outside the house, with other women who were considered bitches, deserving of being paid for their sex and not worthy of marriage. Bad girls to play games. This kind of man doesn't even hesitate to do this practice after his wife gives birth to children and he makes a dividing line between good women and bitches. What's important is not his wife who is a bitch.

5 | Blame the wife
Not infrequently the man blamed his wife who did not want to have sex as he wished so he chose to pay the sex worker. Such a man assumes that because he pays he is entitled to service according to his wishes. Another justification is to buy sex services to satisfy his fantasies, the man has helped his wife to not bother to serve him to satisfy his sexual fantasies.

6 | Mutually beneficial transactions
Many men who buy sex services assume that paying for sex services has helped the prostitute to make money. So that transactions are considered mutually beneficial. This view seems to justify that the sex industry is a legitimate industry. In fact, women who provide sex services are prostituted because they are victims of trafficking and usually come from poor families, or victims of rape.

They are victims of structural poverty, a kind of poverty caused by a system that is unfair and does not favor women. A system that does not provide an option for them to be highly educated, gain expertise and work. Another context is that the man does not want to find out that the woman is a victim of sex trafficking who can be trapped in debt or she will get physical and psychological violence if she does not make a transaction.

Sex transactions also have fatal consequences for health due to transmission of diseases and genital infections such as HIV/AIDS, alcohol dependence, narcotics and illegal drugs. Women who are trafficked in the sex industry are usually forced to consume alcohol and drugs, they are also victims of disease transmission. In addition, the money obtained by sex providers is short-lived. Women are usually trafficked until they are 30 years old, after that bad luck can befall them for life, because they are considered no longer productive.

7 | Blaming women for enjoying sex as prostitute
Another justification is that women who provide sexual services are considered to enjoy sex transactions that occur. In fact, women who are trafficked for the sex industry cannot be forced to appear because they have to get money. They must make transactions under gunpoint pimps. And of course, there is no 'liking' in the sex industry. If the behavior of buying sex services is true and legitimate, certainly no one should be afraid to announce what he did to his wife and family, right?

8 | Maturity ritual and peer pressure
In many cases teenage boys are forced to have premarital sex by buying sex services because of the pressure of their friends. The pressure to show manhood in association also continues into adulthood. Even in Jakarta it was stated that buying sex services was a rite of adulthood for young men as proof of their virility. Another thing to do is to buy sex services on the internet where male sex service buyers join a group of sex service buyers so they can discuss each other and recommend sexual services to each other. Thus the man who at first was guilty of sex abuse felt found justification that there were many men similar to him.

9 | Business with pleasure
Sex business is also used as an excuse for workers to smooth business cooperation. Many good men are plunged into this world because it was originally trapped to include for pleasure in business. In Asian countries like Hong Kong, it is customary that after discussions about work men will drink and get women's services. In Indonesia lately this kind of incident is open to the public where beautiful women who provide sex services are used as bribes for business purposes.

10 | A man who hates women
Apparently there are also men who buy sex services because they hate women who are now starting to gain a lot of freedom and equality. This happens a lot in the West. They then switched to looking for obedient women, innocent to satisfy their sexual desires. This is mostly done by Western men who are arrogant with ownership of money and buy sex services from Asian women. This attitude is also displayed with hatred, wanting to control women, happy to have the power to buy female sex workers.

11 | Male sex supremacy
Our society believes that men must look macho and admit that their sexual desires are bigger than women. And that women are shy, obedient and should not be aggressive. This is used as a justification for men buying sex services, or acting naughty. This is supported by advertisements of mighty products that mighty men are prime men who can get as many women as possible to satisfy their desires. Not to mention promotions in the form of pornography that campaign sex in a vulgar manner, even about buying sex services.

12 | Justification of women
Various products justifying men in buying sex services and their dominance over women are often supported by women. "It's okay if my husband do everything what he want while he is far from home, and not doing that silly thing in front of me," we often hear. Or the assumption that women do not need to know where their husbands go at night is important to go home safely to their homes, is one of the justifications of women for male domination to the point where transparency in daily activities is not needed.

Many women also do not care if the husband buys sex services, he still brings money home as a form of responsibility to the family. Or omission of husband's behavior to buy sex services because the woman feels helpless to reprimand, threaten or leave because she needs income from her husband to support her, while she cannot do anything for her life.

Giving sex service is not a job, because no one is loud and proud to say that he is a sex worker. Prostitution is a forced state. One male domination of women towards his vagina, anus, mouth, body and mind. Not only by one man, but by many men who pay for it. When a man uses women for paid sex practices he is actually expressing deep hatred towards women. He can do whatever he wants while the woman is the opposite. She does not exist. She is only an object for a game.

In the sex industry, women are no longer intact as themselves. It was impossible for a woman to remain intact after her body was used in paid sex practices, because too many were seized in the process, and it was not just once, but many times, by dozens to hundreds of different men. The one robbed is not only physical that can be felt by the skin, but also the mind and soul. Prostitution is also considered as mass rape. Women in the sex industry experience sexual, physical and psychological violence so they experience trauma.

Prostitution is the oldest form of oppression in the world, and sadly the most neglected practice of human rights violations in the world. In many cases, victims are forced to pimp and pay to watch porn videos and practice them with their guests. The man feels that he has the right to get sexual services at will because he has paid. The woman becomes a tool of male power in prostitution, because of money. Without money, can men have power over women?

Depok, 10 June 2019

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