In our last editorial we zeroed in on the announcement by sex worker Natalie Natlee Harewood that she plans to contest the upcoming general election in The City and asked aloud: What if she actually captured the Bridgetown seat?
Today, we have an equally pertinent question which we believe our authorities must answer, and swiftly so. It is, when did prostitution become legal in Barbados?
For if it is not, why does Natlee, and her self proclaimed financier Charles Lewis even have the gumption to present her as a legitimate candidate to vy for a place in our most honourable House of Assembly?
Is this not an affront to our very society and what we have been known to stand for? Or are we now prepared to throw the baby out with the bathwater, and to fully fling ourselves precariously into the moral abyss?
If not, why is there no warrant issued by the Royal Barbados Police Force for Natlee’s arrest? For, at the very least, she should be charged with offending public morals, based on her recent proclamation that her office is located on Bush Hill and that she is a “night jobber”, who solicits sex and performs sex acts for a living.
Even if she conveniently quits the world’s oldest profession at this stage, there is no indication that she is a changed woman who has fully turned her back on prostitution.
However, we note that in her quest to sway right thinking members of the electorate, Natlee has suggested that one of her primary reasons for coming forward at this time is to ensure that more women do not end up with her – turning tricks for a living.
It is a position that has also been strongly reinforced by Mr Lewis, whose ability to make a meal out of the international sex trade equally warrants police investigation.
But we doubt this would ever happen, given all that he knows of “political prostitutes who hide behind the walls of Parliament” even though he is now shamelessly prepared to put his money behind Natlee and “to give her political and intellectual support that she needs”.
We acknowledge that under the Representation of the People Act, there is really nothing to stop a Barbadian citizen from throwing his or her hat in the political ring, as long as they have $250 and can present themselves with a proposer and a seconder on Nomination Day.
But even by Natlee’s unsurprising announcement on Instagram today that she is “quitting her profession as a prostitute” to pursue her “political ambition to become the next parliamentary representative for the City of Bridgetown”, the prospective candidate acknowledges that it cannot be business as usual for her going forward.
“At the end of the day we are looking at a very taboo subject,” Lewis told Barbados TODAY in an interview last week in which he also sought to change the narrative from, ‘Look what our politicians have brought our country to’ to “when sex workers feel that they have no choice but to step into the political arena to improve the very conditions that drove them to prostitution in the first place”.
However, in the same breath, he acknowledged “If [Natlee] were to go forward into the political arena and be successful, it would mean that I would advise her to remove herself from that profession.
“At the end of the day we are looking at a very taboo subject,” he noted.
Taboo indeed! So just because Natlee has 37, 000 followers on Instagram, she must be deemed electable?
As one of our regular commenters who goes by the moniker Saga Boy commented:
“This country is going absolutely mad. It is becoming a country without standards. It is becoming a country where we encourage lawlessness and ungodliness in the name of equal rights, free speech, democracy and progressiveness. So it’s all right for prostitutes to openly advertise their bodies for rent and for them to get on social media and glorify their trade. It is all right for homosexuals to openly display their love and affection for lovers of the same sex. . . . And then we ask why are our children so non compliant with the law and school heads and disrespectful to truer parents. Why are they so rebellious?
“This country has to get back to the position where we call wrong wrong and encourage what is good and wholesome. Time to stop the negativity,” he said.
We can’t help but share his concerns.
Our fear is that if as a society we don’t draw the line soon, Lord Evil will be next to step forward and declare that he is taking on Denis Kellman in St Lucy.
If that happens, God help us all!