Dennis Hof Unfiltered: The TRPWL Interview

Dennis Hof Unfiltered: The TRPWL Interview

Interview by Christina Parreira

Dennis Hof, the entrepreneur who owns seven legal brothels in the state of Nevada and star of the HBO reality series Cathouse, has long been a divisive figure in the world of sex work.

Hof crop

His brash, cigar-chomping style has put him at odds with the more conservative Nevada Brothel Owners Association, who have historically taken a more ‘low profile’ approach. “I’m over the top, I’m a media whore,” said Hof in the 2011 book, ‘Nevada Rose: Inside the American Brothel’. “What else can you do when your business can’t advertise?”

A lot of things can be said about Hof’s approach, but the one thing you cannot claim is that it hasn’t worked.

Hof being interviewed by NBC at Love Ranch Vegas
Hof being interviewed by NBC at Love Ranch Vegas

I sat down with Dennis Hof today after our interviews for the local Las Vegas NBC affiliate. As part of my research for my Ph.D., I have worked in one of Hof’s brothels on and off for the last six months, but I rarely get a chance to spend an afternoon with him. Today was a pleasant surprise, and he was happy to give an interview to TRPWL. We chatted about everything from boobs to the Bedford v. Canada case, and while I do not endorse all of his views, I am glad that he is open to constructive criticism and debate.

PS- Dennis and adult film legend Ron Jeremy are very close friends, so don’t be alarmed by his repeated references to Ron as his “little bitch.” He actually almost had me on the floor in laughter during his Ron stories!

 

You were the first brothel owner to get porn stars working in the ranches. How did that start?

Well my little bitch Ron Jeremy turned me on to Sunset Thomas and that’s how I met her, and we kind of liked each other a little bit and she said that she wanted to try it. She got a little bit of heat over it, but she actually worked here 6 days and made 90k dollars. We promoted it, went on television, went on Howard Stern, and did lots of great, great stuff. And it worked. The porn industry said that she would never work again in porn and she said, “How about fuck you? I made $90,000!” and then they all wanted to come in. All the girls lined up wanting to work there and Sunset opened that door with that help and the media exposure behind it and the industry was surprised because once she blew up [she] got into mainstream media.

Sunset Thomas
Sunset Thomas

See, the porn industry thinks that their media is big media; it’s nothing. Porn media — you make an appearance at a night club, whatever. You make an appearance on a website, whatever. It’s a small audience. But when you get in the mainstream and all of a sudden you take someone like Sunset with me, we’re on O’Reilly, we’re on the Today Show, we’re on real television shows. And then they saw the notoriety and they gave her a big contract with VCA, which Larry Flynt owns now. Sunset broke the ground, she was the trail blazer. She was the Christopher Columbus of porn pussy at the Bunny Ranch.

Here’s the thing though about the term “porn star.” Does that mean when someone turns the video camera on you while you’re sucking a dick? You’re a porn star? No. Not at all. There’s no stars. Ron Jeremy is the only porn star. Ron is the star, even when Jenna was at her biggest, Rob was a bigger star. Ron Jeremy is the only real star in porn and these other girls, I hate to break your heart darling, Ron is the star. He’s the rock star, the super star, he’s everything. The top five porn girls don’t have near the recognition that Ron has. He IS porn.

Hof with Ron Jeremy
Hof with Ron Jeremy

Speaking of Ron, what’s your best Ron Jeremy story? You must have a million! Maybe one that involves him awake…

I have so many stories, but here’s the best: So Ron wanted to swing with me. I don’t know whether he just wants to see my dick, I don’t know but he wants to swing with me all the time! So years back, after 10 years of begging, I finally said okay. So I was dating a girl, beautiful, blonde, 19, been in all these fashion magazines, and Ron wants her in the worst way. So I said all right, I’ll try it with you Ron.

So he gets a porn girl named Raine, and when we get to my suite at the Hyatt Riot in Hollywood, the girls get naked and start interacting. And Ron leans against the headboard and his big ol’ gut hanging out and his big ol’ elephant trunk cock hanging out. Now, he puts his hand on his head and in three seconds he’s going to sleep because if you’re not talking to Ron Jeremy or about Ron Jeremy, he goes to sleep. He has no interest in anything else. That’s how self-centered my little bitch is. LOL Now, so there she was laying in bed, he goes to sleep. I wake him up and I’m like “Butthead! Wake up! You’ve been trying to get me to swing for 10 years, now is our chance! We’re going to be swingers!” A minute later…asleep again. He does it three times so I told the girls, get a robe on. We got another room, snuck out, had this amazing threesome. Then we went back and it was like your dad when you put your key in the lock at 4 in the morning- “WHERE YA BEEN!?”  Well, we went for a walk! Ron you went to sleep. “NO NO I went everywhere! Did you do anything?? Why are they wearing robes?”

 

So you never got to swing with Ron!?

Not then, I’ve done it in the past, but Ron is all about double penetration and I don’t want my cock touching anyone’s cock. It’s a very thin layer and the first time that my balls touch Ron Jeremy’s balls, I would be in therapy for six months. I would spend $10,000 on therapy trying to get over that horrendous experience.

Ava Adore and Ron Jeremy
Ava Adore and Ron Jeremy

I hope that by now he knows you had the threesome, because if not, he might find out now…

Oh yeah. So now, I’m at the same hotel three years later with a girlfriend and Ron wants to see this television show I was on. So he lays on the bed, my girlfriend puts it on and a minute later he’s asleep. And here I am- “Asshole! I’m the one on the tv show, I don’t need to see it!”  Okay, he falls back asleep. [We’re at] the Hyatt Riot. The elevator doesn’t work, so we take our luggage down like everyone else and we get down in front and come to find out, Sunset strip is blocked off. There’s cops and ambulances everywhere. Turns out, the maintenance guy was working on the pool and electrocuted himself. It shut down the entire emergency system at the hotel. So, we left and about 5 minutes later I call Ron- “Ron get under the bed! Theres a killer in the building!” I hung up the phone! I called back a minute later, “Ron! There’s a sniper in the building. You gotta get under the bed!” Ron says “I can’t! I can’t fit under the bed! I can’t!”  I tell him to get in the closet, lock the door! I tell him “oh my god he’s killed 8 people! Ron whatever you do, don’t answer the door!” So, I did this to him all the way to LAX and then I finally gave it a break. The next day, he calls and says “hey nobody got killed there!” and I say “What? It was on the news!”

 

Wow. Well, let’s switch gears and talk about Canada!

Well, some people sued them and said that it’s unsafe the way they operate by not having brothels. No different than 125 years ago when Jack the ripper was shredding women in London because they wouldn’t allow women to work in brothels, women were working independently and getting killed. Same as in America, over 900 girls murdered last year. Over 4000 sliced up and in intensive care because of customers doing terrible things to them. So, they [brought a] federal case and they won. Then the government appealed it and it went to the supreme court. The supreme court of Canada 9-0 said “they’re right and let’s change these laws.” Now it’s been put in the hands of administrative people to change the laws, to figure out what direction we’re going in. And they couldn’t have come up with a worse way. What they’ve come up with is like the Nordic Model, where a girl can work on her own, not with two people, but one person which means she’s in a totally unsafe situation. If there’s more than two people, they go to prison. You cannot advertise on the internet and no one can live on the proceeds, so they’re going backwards. What they want to do is prosecute the men. They want to prosecute the demand and not the supply. It doesn’t work. it couldn’t be more fucked up and right now Canada is in a state of flux because some jurisdictions are locking girls up one after the other. Other jurisdictions don’t care and they’ve got themselves a real mess on their hands. They should have listened and I tried to tell them how to do this and they didn’t listen.

 

Where do you think the US is headed in terms of prostitution policy?

I don’t think you’re going to see anything, and the reason I say that is because a smart politician will not touch this for or against, evidenced by me speaking at a joint legislature a few years ago and when I spoke and I opened it up to this big panel for questions, there wasn’t one question. And I started laughing, then the media started laughing. And I said, “Thanks a lot gentleman! It’s been fun!” Now, why is that? It’s because you just cannot win. If you’re against prostitution, legalizing it and doing the right thing like the rest of Nevada, then the conservatives will eat your freaking lunch. If you go the other way, and you’re against it then the democrats and liberals are going to eat your lunch.  They just cannot win. With liquor and prohibition, there wasn’t anything emotional involved in it, it was just a business decision. [Well, alcohol prohibition grew out of Christian temperance movements — ed.] With marijuana it’s the same thing, but when it comes to sex it’s the morals.

 

What makes sex different?

Well, some people have 65 year old imaginary friends in the Bible and that’s the difference. It’s the religion behind all of this that says, No, I can’t do this. “If you fuck, you’re going to hell! Your peers are going to hate you!” They just can’t do it. Their mind is so screwed up and they can’t have great quality sex. Religion and sex is drilled into these people’s minds, although in the Bible there are many many references to prostitutes. But nobody chooses to read them or accept them as truth. They only accept the parts about not having sex out of wedlock and whatever other hand job goes with that.

Christina Parreira, Madam Sonja, and Cumisha Amado with Hof, June 11, 2014
Christina Parreira, Madam Sonja and ex-porn star Cumisha Amado with Hof, June 11, 2014

I recently read in an interview that you’ve slept with every girl that works for you? Is this true? [Obviously smirking here and putting him on the hot seat since he knows he has not slept with me.]

That’s a total lie and you know what, the news outlet that did that retracted it. Absolutely not. I never ever sleep with a girl prior to her going to work, I typically don’t even get involved when they’re hiring people. Number 1, I don’t sleep with civilian chicks because I’m terrified of diseases. I know that if I go to CDC.org and look at the age group that I want to sleep with, 1 in 4 has an STD. Now, if someone told me that I have a 1 in 4 change of a car wreck on the way to a restaurant, guess what? I’m walking. One out of four is not good odds! I don’t ever EVER sleep with a civilian, it’s been at least 10-12 years. I can’t take a disease home to the family so I just don’t do it.

Also, I don’t think that pre-employment should be based on sleeping with me. Now if a girl comes to work there and I like her and she likes me, then I’m going to test her every way because I don’t want to do anything that makes her feel weird or puts her in a bad situation. It would break my heart if I felt like a girl was sleeping with me because she had to. I’ve been so fortunate to have wonderful nice girls and great relationships but in the beginning I need to make sure it’s all for the right reasons.

 

What’s the highest number of orgasms you’ve given a woman in a day?

30-40. if Brooke Taylor was here or Cami Parker they’d tell you that I like to take off Sundays, that’s my day, and it’s going to be 30-40 orgasms every Sunday. That’s the way it is! You start off in the morning and you start going for it, have a shower, have breakfast, come back, get some more, do a little work, swim, take the Mercedes or the Harley, come back and have some more. By the time it’s over, 30 or 40 orgasms every Sunday! That’s how it is. If girls are having 30-40 orgasms in a day, she’s never busy when you call her!

 

Okay, so according to Dr. Melissa Farley, there’s some trafficking going on in the brothels. What do you think of her claims?

I think Melissa Farley is a slimy piece of fucking crap. I don’t see any truth in what she says. We’ve offered to debate her many times. I’ve offered to take her to the Nevada state health department. Now, what I do see is about 8 or 10 cases a year of new girls going to work, 18-21 and have never worked in the business and they come in with Chlamydia. They never knew they had it and the health department meets with them. The reality is that the one long term boyfriend isn’t being monogamous and she is, and I see this about 5-10 times a year and it’s always the same thing.

 

So why do you think Melissa Farley puts this information out? 

Well, she’s a grandstander that gets paid. She gets paid to oppose everything out there, she’s getting money from different organizations and she’s just full of shit. There’s no truth in it and she won’t even debate anybody. Show me a case of HIV in the brothel industry. It’s never happened.

[In reality, there’s no way Hof can know this for certain because a brothel worker can quit the brothel, disappear to her home town, and no one will know where, or even if, she has been infected. No one can force her to inform the brothel, and she doesn’t have the name and contact info of her clients. Only the brothel worker is tested under this system, not the client, so the only way to know his claim as fact would be ongoing testing of both brothel workers AND clients. — ed.]

Now, has it happened pre-screen? Absolutely. There’s been a few cases of that but that’s why we do a pre-screen before the girl comes to work. We do a weekly health check and barriers and condoms, and it works.

[Sadly the HIV testing used in Nevada for the brothels is an ELISA-based test with a lengthy window (or ‘eclipse’) period, not shorter wind period testing such as the PCR testing used by adult performers. And condoms can and do break, even in Nevada brothels. — ed.]

 

Has Farley ever reached out to you or responded to debating with you?

No, never. We even invited her to the brothel to come and speak to the girls and she won’t take us up on it. She’s full of shit and in my opinion, she’s a liar and she loves to sensationalize things and tell stories that don’t seem to be true — at least in my experience, and I have 22 years of experience. 6000 girls have worked for me in 7 different locations and I don’t see what she’s talking about.

 

Well thank goodness for her because if it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t be here doing this research!

Well, thank you Melissa!

 

Okay Dennis, here’s my last question. Are you a Libertarian?

I think I am. I’m a guy that wants to take care of people. I’m compassionate. But fiscally, probably a Republican. I was raised with immigrant parents, my mother Italian and my father German, and they were in the Depression. I was raised that if you’re white and you want to be rich, you have to be Republican. Until I got into the adult business and Larry Flynt said “they’re right until you get into the adult business. If you want to be able to fuck who you want to fuck and read what you want to read, you better be a Democrat”. So, I vote for the person, not the party. I think both parties have a lot of real flaws to them and I want to be a libertarian. I come from the Tucker Carlson and John Stossel school of thinking.

 

Ok, you know why I’m asking you this right?

Because you always wanted to blow a Libertarian and I’m the one?

 

[Laughs] No, I have my husband at home for that!  As a Libertarian — and I understand that you need to put money in your own pocket, but  — how can you be a Libertarian and not be okay with women independently escorting? Two adults consenting behind closed doors?

Any profession needs to be regulated. Doctors can’t do abortions in their bathroom or tit jobs in their garage. They have to have regulations, they need schooling, a license, and a background check. They have to work in a commercial environment. They have to have continued education.

[Sex, however, is a natural human function. No degree needed — ed.]

So, now with a working girl, they could go get a card from the sheriff’s office and get a card that says they’re guaranteed 18 years of age and have no warrants. My problem with these working girls — these COYOTE girls in SF — [is] they want to work in a residential environment, and I don’t want that. A printing company working in a condominium high-rise next to mine? I don’t want a plumber using his condo as his office and keeping all of his supplies there.

[There exists grave doubt that sex workers or their clients would prefer residential areas, and in any case, many businesses operate from private homes, Also, sex work doesn’t per se require a shop full of supplies, and noisy equipment on par with a manufacturing or repair business. This is more of a zoning matter than a decriminalization issue — ed.]

I don’t want any of that going on. It needs to be in a commercial environment, so when you totally decriminalize it, that’s what they want. And they will never get it.

 

 

18 Responses to "Dennis Hof Unfiltered: The TRPWL Interview"

  1. Pingback: Dennis Hof Unfiltered: The TRPWL Interview | Adult WIkiMedia

  2. Coyoteri   July 12, 2014 11:00 am at 11:00 AM

    Bella weighs in

    First of all I want to applaud Christina for her the research she conducted at the brothels and for having the stomach to sit near Hoffman to conduct this interview. Bella is the founder of the Rhode Island chapter of Coyote. She has been a sex worker for over 30 years and did work in Rhode Island during the time that indoor sex work was decriminalized. Bella is a sex worker rights activist and networks with many other organizations.

    Let’s go over some of Hof’s claims, OK he claims he can not advertise, yet there are ads on reviews sites adverting the girls that work there. So that is not a true statement.

    The next thing I noticed is when they talked about past porn starts working at the brothels and how much money they make, they seem to make the readers thing this is the norm. When in fact the brothel workers are not making even close to these amounts as there are very few clients coming into the brothels lately. Lets get back to reality as it wasn’t long ago I heard of a worker in another brothel that jumped the fence because she owed so much back rent and was not making any money. Another person I know worked at a brothel for a whole month and only saw 2 or 3 clients, and all of her earnings went to paying rent, thus she did not leave with any profit.

    Even what Hof says about billC36 is utter bullshit as the women were being murdered because they had no rights and no protection under the law. Anytime a sex worker can not report violence and is sacred to reach out to the police this is what creates the prefect playground for bad cops and other predators to continue robbing, raping, exploiting, beating and murdering them. Just like the US most Canadian sex workers are independent escorts working from a private location, and before Bedford it was illegal for 2 or 3 escorts to share the same work space as they claimed these were brothels. Ironically when Hof bragged to the media that he wants to go to Canada and open brothels even the sex workers were upset. In my opinion no adult business that has a stable of women should be owned or managed by a MAN. As this is implying that women are too stupid or helpless to run their own personal affairs and this is OFFENSIVE.

    Hof still doesn’t seem to understand how prostitution lobbying works, as we already know no politician will stand up for the rights of sex workers. But what Hof doesn’t mention is that he already knows that through the efforts of “The Erotic Service Providers Legal Educational and Research Project” that we are very close to filing the US constitutional challenge on prostitution laws between consenting adults. Now the reason Hof does not support these efforts is because once sex work is decriminalized he will be out of business. Notice through the whole interview Hof never mentions the rights of these women who work for him, let alone the majority of US sex workers. See our legal challenge here http://www.gofundme.com/litigatetoemancipate

    I am sure until decriminalization is a reality for US sex worker that Hof will still be able to find women to work in his brothels, after all there will always will be desperate women. I think we can all understand that if any one of us where cold and hungry enough we could be convinced to turn a trick for a blanket and a burger. Many of the women have no clue what the ramifications of registering with the sheriff’s dept. Hof claims they have to check for warrants well lets ask why it is legal for me to work at Walmart with a warrant. Then lets examine this fun fact that all the women that register become a matter of public record, so any stalker or person that wants to discriminate against them can go look up who is registered as a whore. This information could also be used to take away custody of these women children, or to discriminate against them for housing and further employment. Why is it the sheriffs has to confirm the person has ID and is a adult, as all other adult business simple keep a copy of the workers ID on file. The brothel workers have to apply for a new permit every 3 months so I guess that is to make sure none of the workers are getting YOUNGER so this seems to me more like “paying off the local cops” than anything else. No other person in the US is required to get a work permit other than a minor under 16 or a illegal immigrant other than sex workers and Las Vegas dancers” yet the government seems to think that there is good reason to keep track who is a whore and who isn’t.

    I never heard Hof talk about the unfair discrimination his workers face, and as far as I know he hasn’t done ANYTHING to stand up for their rights. I know a worker that took Hof’s check to a local bank that refused to cash it. I bet the bank had no concern about the money being in Hof’s account, the bank just wanted to discriminate against the sex workers who worked at the brothels. I never heard Hof make a sound in the media when Chase bank closed the accounts of all porn performers. Now another fun fact is that Hof claims these women are his workers but also claims that they are not employees, so he takes 1/2 of each womens earnings,and then he makes them pay rent every day, and yet many courts have ruled that dancers that are required to work shifts and are put on a schedule are employees. Yet Hof does not pay for any of the women’s expenses, nor does he give them any benefits, yet he takes 1/2 their earnings and this is what we call a POVERTY PIMP . We have even seen illegal pimps in the media that provided vacation and maturity leave for the women in their stables, some even bought the women their own houses.

    Hmm so Hof went on reviews sites and claimed he has had sex with every women that has ever worked for him, and claims it was about 6,000 women, yet now he admits that this was a HUGE LIE and he also says he is sacred to sleep with non sex workers because 1 in 4 have a std. What Hoffman doesn’t tell you is that he has been trying to get many of his workers to have unprotected sex with him. I find that people that are worried about stds’ are not suing condoms themselves. Now the brothel rules say all clients must use a condom for all sex acts, but Hof’s brothel leaves it up to the workers if they want to allow a man to perform oral sex on them without a dental dam. Here is another fun fact US sex worker have less std’s than the general public and since most of them don’t work in brothels this goes to show that they are smart enough to use condoms without having a pimp or being forced to live and work in a brothel if they want to work legally.

    The funniest part of the interview is Hof’s claims that on a average Sunday he can give a women 30 to 40 organism, so I guess Hof can’t tell when a women is faking…Most confident men do not feel the need to brag abot how good they are in bed..

    Hoff calls the independent sex workers Coyotes well lets get some facts straight. It was COYOTE who filed suit in Rhode Island and challenged the laws and got indoor sex work decriminalized from 1979 until 2009. That case was COYOTE VS ROBERTS. The women were free to work from home, hotels or for agencies or spa’s. All the spa’s charged the client a 50 dollar fee, and then the client and worker negotiated and the workers got to keep all their earnings and they did not pay any rent. The women picked which shifts they wanted to work and they did not have to live on the premises and they didn’t have any problem with std’s nor did they have 1 case of trafficking during those 30 years.

    Now Hof has claimed in other media interviews that only his brothels can stop trafficking, yet if you go on netflix and watch the 2013 award winning film “American Courtesans” you can hear Gina De Palma say she worked at the Mustang Ranch when she was just 14, under the control of a pimp, who would come back after 2 or 3 weeks pick her up and take all her money. While I am not saying there are currently any victims of trafficking at these brothels lets face it when you make the women live on the premises it would be easy to use intimation to control them.

    The brothel workers have NO LABOR RIGHTS, they can’t join unions because they are not employees, thus they have no right to agency or labor rights. So if you are a erotic service provider and you are tired of the discrimination, then join the Erotic Service Providers Union at espu-ca.org

    Just as Walmart makes billion each year by using Americans that work for slave wages, Hof also makes millions while the women who work for him have no rights, and they have to hand over 1/2 of all their earnings,

    Enclosing I would like to invite Hof to a public debate with me or other sex worker rights activist, and lets see if he has big enough balls to take us up on this offer.

    Now lets hope the world can see the REAL reason Hof is against decriminalization of consensual sex work between adults.

     
    Reply
    • Deep Throat   July 12, 2014 11:15 am at 11:15 AM

      “US sex worker have less std’s than the general public” There’s in fact no way to know this since 1) the rates of regular, comprehensive STI testing are low among both groups, 2) unless they test at a sex worker community clinic there’s no way to determine that the person reporting an STI to a county health department was in fact a sex worker, and, 3) “sex worker” is a very broad category. To make this claim in a statistically valid way, one would have to compare SIMILAR populations in terms of age, sexual preference, whether they are sexually active, etc… It’s not a one-size fits all proposition.

      “[U]ntil decriminalization is a reality for US sex worker [sic] … Hof will still be able to find women to work in his brothels, after all there will always will be desperate women.” That’s actually quite an ugly and insulting comment to make about your fellow sex workers. There are many reasons why women choose to work in a licensed brothel. For one thing, it’s LEGAL and they can’t get arrested. For another, if a client tries to attack them, there are other people around who can kick the client’s ass to the curb. Others like the structure of brothel work/living. Your remark is not far off from what the prohibitionists say — “women FALL INTO prostitution out of desperation.” For some that’s true, just as it’s true that people with few skills, low intelligence and/or low ambition “fall into” working at Dairy Queen. Like water, people find their own level, and there are plenty of women who love working at licensed brothels. No one has the right to take that choice away from them.

      “In my opinion no adult business that has a stable of women should be owned or managed by a MAN. As this is implying that women are too stupid or helpless to run their own personal affairs and this is OFFENSIVE.” — An utterly nonsensical statement. It implies no such thing. YOU are implying that all men are predatory, which is far more offensive that what you opine to. There is no law that says women can’t OWN a brothel, and in fact the managers of the brothels — even the Hof brothels, are women.

      “Most confident men do not feel the need to brag about [sic] how good they are in bed” That’s a personal attack, and is out of place in a critique of his stand on sex work. Furthermore, if you’d like a list of bragging statements made by women about their sexuality/prowess, I could provide you a book’s worth.

       
      Reply
  3. Elle   July 13, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 PM

    Decriminalization is the way to go. Deep throat below said: Like water, people find their own level, and there are plenty of women who love working at licensed brothels. No one has the right to take that choice away from them.

    Too bad our right to engage in consensual sex work HAS BEEN TAKEN AWAY, and by and large sex workers do not want to hand over half their pay to someone JUST TO AVOID ARREST for doing something they have every right to do. The brothels are good for some but not so good for anyone who doesn’t bank big. Too many negative stories of women being taken advantage of by brothels, and the fact that these women are promoting Obamacare said it all to me. They have zero labor rights, zero protection, they are getting screwed in more ways than one. So yeah, I get Bella’s comment and as a fellow sex worker I wasn’t offended at all. No empowered woman in her right mind would hand Hof or anyone else half her earnings. Desperate because the risk of arrest keeps women from feeling safe to work as independants. And we don’t need a pimp hanging around to make sure we are safe either, certainly not at a cost of half of our earnings or if you owe the brothel ALL of your earnings to be able to leave. I know of a woman who had to borrow $600 to leave the brothel. I don’t agree that brothels should only be owned by women because women can be equally predatorial and abuse the women working under them just as men do- as I’ve experienced myself at a non erotic massage facility as well as having observed another situation at a commercial dungeon where the ‘head mistress’ stole her apprentices tips and would take a 75% cut of their earnings under the guise of a ‘training fee’ situation. We can leave the gender lens out of the discussion. LABOR RIGHTS and DECRIMNALZATION is the way to go here!

     
    Reply
  4. Elle   July 13, 2014 12:28 pm at 12:28 PM

    One more thing- zoning shouldn’t be a big deal. 1000 ft away from any residence, church or school. Just as a strip club or medical marijuana dispensary does! NOT A BIG DEAL. it doesn’t need to be in a commercial environment. I’ve had my studio voluntarily in an industrial unit for almost a decade now. I did this consciously out of respect for others, not wanting neighbors to be impacted by my business. Problem now is, since the legalization of marijuana I am now competing with growers and dispensaries for the same zoning and rent has also gone up up UP. there is always a solution!

     
    Reply
    • sfmistress   July 13, 2014 10:57 pm at 10:57 PM

      One of the issues with forcing sex workers into industrial or commercial areas to work is the lack of public transportation in those areas. Lack of transportation options benefits capitalist, primarily corporate capitalist-like him who wants to extend his domination= the walmart brothel.

       
      Reply
    • TRPWL-Sean   July 14, 2014 8:01 am at 8:01 AM

      LOL

      law banning men from owning and operating sex businesses where the majority of workers are women.

      Followed by a law banning retards from the internet..

       
      Reply
      • Elle   July 14, 2014 3:58 pm at 3:58 PM

        >Followed by a law banning retards from the internet..<

        careful what you wish for lol you might not make the cut.

         
        Reply
        • TRPWL-Sean   July 14, 2014 6:11 pm at 6:11 PM

          Ill take my chances

           
          Reply
    • Deep Throat   July 14, 2014 10:00 am at 10:00 AM

      Maxine, first of all there’s a brothel owned by a husband and wife last time I checked. If you think more women should own brothels, go buy one.

      In America, our goal is to NOT discriminate based on gender; you are endorsing reverse discrimination apparently on the grounds that men just can’t be trusted because they’re all oppressors or some other patriarchy bullshit. No one has alleged that anyone was forced to have sex with any owner or manager as a condition of employment.

      Have women been turned away from owning or operating Nevada brothels based on gender? If not, then regardless of what your other complaints are about brothels, there’s no gender problem in brothel ownership. Full stop.

       
      Reply
      • Christina Parreira   July 14, 2014 1:53 pm at 1:53 PM

        Okay, since I’m the one who interviewed Hof and who is collecting data in his brothels, I feel the need to respond and to clarify some of Bella’s points. First off, it IS illegal for brothels to advertise in Nevada, he is correct on that. Individual girls can advertise as providers but the brothels themselves cannot advertise on billboards or in public spaces. The way that Hof gets around this is by having billboards that say “brothel,” but then have things such as “hot sauce, souvenirs, etc” listed underneath. Sex for money is not and can never be advertised in the same way.

        Next, porn stars and money in brothels: he does not make this sound like the norm. I was the one who asked about porn stars in the brothels and he gave an honest response. Of course it is not the norm for a civilian to make the same amount as a star, and I don’t think he makes this claim anywhere. However, it IS possible for civilians to make damn good money, just as some make little to no money. This is the norm for many adult businesses where workers are independent contractors. Using examples of workers who made no money does not take away from the fact that some make great money, and on average most make at least enough to get by. Even on a dead week, I made much more than average, but this really isn’t the point of the interview.

        The claim that only women should own brothels not only blows my mind, but it’s extremely offensive. Why on earth are two women who are for labor rights trying to now institute gender discrimination in commercial sex businesses? Really? We should be moving forwards, not backwards. I don’t feel the need to say much more on this other than it’s a ridiculous idea. Not to mention that there is no law preventing women from owning and operating brothels. Also, who’s to say a woman would be a better boss, and on what grounds? Is it because a woman is less likely to have sex with her employees? What about if the woman is a lesbian, or bisexual? Is she now deemed a predator as a male boss would be? It’s infantilizing to women to assume that we all need protection from our big bad scary male predator bosses. This is starting to sound like the same tired old patriarchy/feminist argument and I’m confused as to how it fits into labor rights.

        Dennis Hof is a business man, not an activist. This should be clear by now. He is likely against decriminalization because it will hurt his business, we all know this. He is a capitalist trying to make a buck in the world, and he’s doing a damn good job. I can’t fault his for that, even though I myself am for full decriminalization. However, Hof has been a great boss to me and his workers are treated much better than in other brothels. Bella, you cite examples of workers in Mustang Ranch from 20-30 years ago, a brothel owned by a different man who was eventually busted and fled to Mexico.

        In sum, it’s unfair and inaccurate to say that workers in the brothels have no labor rights, and this is coming from someone who works in a brothel. I’m sure many would echo my sentiments. We, as brothel workers, do not need other sex workers shaming us for our choice to work in a brothel or for other sex workers to assume what our experiences are like. This is exactly what the antis do to us; they assume we have no agency and that we all need saving and protecting.

         
        Reply
        • Elle   July 14, 2014 3:45 pm at 3:45 PM

          No one here that I have read ‘shamed’ you or brothel workers because they have an opinion as they do regarding brothels. I’d call that a melodramatic response, but I can see how you’d take it personal.

          I would sincerely like to know more about these ‘labor rights’ you have mentioned involved with American brothels.

          Also, are there health benefits? Insurance? The ability to organize and have a say in how things are done? What if a provider is hurt on the job? What happens then? What if a conflict arises, is their a system in place to ensure that the brothel worker’s labor rights are acknowledged and a course of action is taken if there is a claim of abuse? if so, who facilitates it? There are a variety of angles we could be coming from in terms of labor rights.

          In the least being in his position (he can reach a larger audience than someone who isn’t as well known) he could promote decriminalization, why? because its the right thing to do from a stand point of harm reduction and human rights (never mind this little thing called sovereignty), but he isn’t interested in that, he is only interested in covering his own ass. Clearly. He can’t be THAT ignorant as to what sex workers and their clients are dealing with outside the bubble of the Bunny Ranch and how wrong it is.

          MANY people are harmed by the criminalization of prostitution. Lives are being devastated, not by sex work, but through arrest and the subsequent circumstances created out of that arrest.

          But what does Hof care? Clearly he doesn’t. No he doesn’t have to care either. He has every right to be a self serving prick. SMILE.

           
          Reply
        • Jody Williams   July 16, 2014 8:10 am at 8:10 AM

          Christina – I am not the only person who has tried to speak out about something they’ve seen or experienced at the brothels before that’s less than flattering, but is the truth. In return, they’ve suffered great damage, and/or received threats. I received something in my email yesterday stating that “nothing but the truth would be tolerated”. Now I’m not sure what he means by “tolerated” but it sure implies a threat to me. Especially in light of previous ones. You say you are going to “print the whole truth”. Well I want to know what steps are you going to take in case you want to print something that is less than flattering?

           
          Reply
          • Jody Williams   July 16, 2014 8:11 am at 8:11 AM

            PS – if you check my facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/sexworkersanonymousofficialpage you’ll see a copy of this email from Dennis for yourself.

             
          • Jody Williams   July 16, 2014 8:40 am at 8:40 AM

            Christina – the conditions you described from when Joe ran the Mustang Ranch you talk about being “30 years ago” alongside the claim that “Dennis treats the woman better” illustrates the point that the treatment of the women in these brothels is entirely up to the discretion of the brothel owners at the moment. Dennis isn’t going to be around forever, and some of these brothel owners have done horrible terrible things from what eye witnesses have told me. I keep hearing “let’s treat it like a business” yet I don’t see it being treated “just like a business”. For one thing, I know that when someone goes in to work in a body shop they are given more warning about the toxic hazards they are about to walk into than the brothel workers are given at the licensing board. While you were an educated women walking in there – many of these women aren’t. There is no training provided at the licensing board – nor at the women there given any “heads up” about the fact that this license can block them in the future from getting real estate licenses, passing the bar, getting a seat on the SEC, and even cost them the children in a custody battle as are just some of the complaints our members have told me has happened to them that they were not advised of when they took out that license. While you are exposed to way more hazards health wise than any other profession – you are not given any special types of disability funds, retirement, pension, etc. If you were an actor or musician – you would be able to get access to such things including even special rates into special retirement and nursing homes when you get older because the actors and musicians know that they lived on an erratic cash income just as sex workers. I have spoken to Joe Conforte, and Dennis Hof many times about the fact I do not have a problem with the legal brothels – but what I do have a problem with is the fact that women are not fully advised what they are about to walk into, they are also not give any type of exit program when they leave – nor referrals to any that do exist. When I have confronted them about this I have been told flat out directly that they do not want them to succeed in exiting because they have quote spent way too much time and money into “recruiting” these women into the business to do anything to help them leave. When I have said to Dennis that I never said “help them leave” but to help them when it’s time to leave – he’s made it very clear he will work these women until their legs fall off. When I’ve asked about the women who contract HIV and can no longer work at the brothel legally and who therefore need help to transition out of the sex industry – he just points out there are other places within the business where they can be put to work. I’m for the choice to enter the sex industry Christina – but when the choice to leave is not fully honored one has to wonder where the line of coercion is. Especially when people who have left working the brothels are either reporting they are terrified of talking about it for fear of retaliation, or they are actually harmed and/or threatened. I’ve witnessed it. I’ve been threatened. I’ve witnessed people who have tried to set up cab services so that some women can just pick up a phone and call for a cab to leave the brothels when they want to – who have been threatened into shutting down those businesses and then had the brothel owners tell me they want it “hard” for those women to leave in a hurry. We’ve sent in more than one volunteer to pick up a woman who wants to leave her pimp from the brothel who has been greeted by someone with a gun pointed at them at the brothels and threatened when they’ve shown up to “go home”. You have to realize Christina that you are a public figure, a researcher, married to an attorney who is also a public figure, and quite exposed on social media – your experiences there at the brothels are not going to be the same as many other women there who don’t have those kinds of “leverages” and outright “protections”. I seriously doubt you’d witness 1/2 of the things our members have reported to us they witnessed while working up there because I simply don’t think they’d let you witness it because they know who you are and they know you’re writing about this and they know it’s going into a report. The reason why Dennis told me to “stop speaking to him” is because I’m preparing a series of lectures to Fortune 500 corporations about the dangers of seeing illegal prostitutes these days because of what the sex traffickers are doing – I mean look at what happened to Forrest Hayes or Steve Sassa or the CEO from Glaxo as just a few examples of what’s happening to the johns right now. Which is going to get worse as they criminalize the johns. The traffickers are going to use that as leverage even more. I know they’re going to ask me for a “safe alternative” and you know what? I’d like to say the legal brothels are. But as long as the women are being denied any access to form a union (we’ve tried getting a union worker in there before and we’ve been denied), they refuse to allow me or to find someone to be a advocate for the prostitutes (while there’s one for the brothel owners there’s none for the prostitutes), they refuse to offer them health insurance before now, workers compensation (what if someone does contract HIV on the job, or what about the women who have been attacked on the job), there is not exit program offered to them, in fact they refuse to give them out our number for the last 30 years now despite the fact we’ve been the only program that has come to get them and help them when they’ve decided to leave and we’ve been successful and they’ve seen our success cases, they refuse to set up any type of retirement, pension, disability, etc., plan for the prostitutes. I mean look at Amy – she lost her retirement to Madoff and now she’s having to start over? Why is it so hard for the women to be allowed to go to NA or AA meetings or why are they refused to have one brought on site or video’d in? Any other job allows them to seek drug and/or alcohol treatment. You’ve seen yourself you have to stay there weeks at a time and how difficult it is to leave – how are you supposed to go to daily meetings if you’re in early sobriety? Do you know they have refused to allow up domestic violence counseling to come up there despite how many of those relationships up there are abusive and violent? The women come to work black and blue and no one even offers them the number to a local battered womens’ hotline? There is no financial planning advice given up there and nothing structured in there to help the women plan for their retirement. Even dancers and football players are programmed for when they are too old to play any longer and they hang up the shoes or the jersey – but men like Dennis act like the party is never going to end. They also seem to think that as long as they treat the women okay – that it’s all good. Well what happens if Dennis has a heart attack and dies tomorrow? There is no standard rules or policy set into place that EVERYONE has to follow up there. The reason why people talk about “female” owners being best is experience. Sex Workers Anonymous has members who have worked at brothels in the UK and Australia as well as Amsterdam and every single one of them has said the female owned and managed brothels are entirely different and BETTER than the male owned ones. I know of no single case of where I’ve been called about a trafficking operation in connection with a brothel that’s either legal or illegal that was run or owned by a female. Not one. In 40 years – I’ve never heard of one where there wasn’t a man behind a trafficking operation. I’ve answered over 500,000 phone calls – so there’s your “data”.

             
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