Is it time to reel in craigslist?

  

Memo to the down-low craigslist skanks: It’s “D-I-S-C-R-E-E-T.” And please, please, please come out of the fucking closet already, because it’s fundamentally fucked up that the rest of us fags who are men enough to be out of the fucking closet have to fight for your equal human and civil rights, too. You closet cases want your cock and eat it too, but I say: Fuck. That. Shit. Thank you!

There are calls now to put restraints on craigslist, especially its “erotic services” category, in the aftermath of the arrest of a 23-year-old male medical student in Boston for the murder of a 25-year-old female masseuse he met through the online classified ad service.

But the larger threat to the public good than the “erotic services” ads on craigslist, even those “erotic services” ads that are just a cover for prostitution, it seems to me, are the free hookup ads on craigslist, which are a public health and safety nightmare.

Oh, sure, craigslist has its disclaimers and warnings (like the alcohol pushers who advise you to “drink responsibly”), and yes, it’s rather entertaining and often titillating to peruse the hookups ads to see what people actually will post, but should people really be enabled to have recreational sex to the degree that craigslist enables them to?

True, skanks probably are going to be skanks, and if it’s not craigslist it probably will be a park or truck-stop bathroom or the like, but I think that one could make a public-health and public-safety argument for at least some restrictions on craigslist.

At the same time, I’m a firm believer in First Amendment rights and the right to associate with whomever one wishes to associate, so I don’t know how curbing the damage that craigslist is facilitating* can be squared with constitutional rights.

Constitutional rights, however, take a back seat when there is public harm, and craigslist, despite its owners’ and operators’ self-preservation-minded claims to the contrary, is facilitating a lot of public harm. 

Should craigslist be allowed to continue to profit (yes, craigslist is for-profit) at the expense of the public good?

* I refer to the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases; the enabling of sexually compulsive behavior; the emotional harm that is caused as the result of infidelity; the enabling of “bicurious” men (or men who even claim, surreally, to be completely straight even though they are seeking out sex with other men) to stay in the closet; facilitating violent crimes like robbery, assualt and battery, kidnapping and even murder; etc.

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