There’s a lengthy and interesting feature in Business Insider about a Nevada brothel called Sheri’s Ranch. It struck me that the reporter approached the story with an open mind, and it’s free of most of the sex-negativity we’ve come to expect from this kind of story:

Sheri’s Ranch is a compelling demonstration that legalized and well-regulated prostitution can be safe, functional, and profitable.

There’s an ineffable welcoming quality to Sheri’s Ranch. There is no shame, no fear, no judgment to be found anywhere near the place. There’s no illusion to maintain — you’ve arrived, hat in hand, to pay for sex. Not only do the ladies know this, but they’re glad you’re here. Where America’s sexual culture seems far more repressed than that of other countries, Sheri’s turns this paradigm on its ear and welcomes you to indulge in (mostly) whatever it is you want. Their business depends on it.

Fair warning: as you may not know unless you are keeping up with current trends in sex-worker activism, there’s a recent push to stigmatize the use of the word “prostitute” and replace it with “sex worker”. Although prostitute was until recently the polite word used in civilized discourse to replace derogatory terms like “whore” and “hooker” and “street walker”, sex worker advocates and activists now consider “prostitute” to be derogatory as well. This nascent development has not yet been fully communicated to the mainstream, and the reporter of this story is someone who clearly has not yet received this particular memo. I think it’s obvious upon reading that the reporter is using “prostitute” in a descriptive manner with no derogation intended, but those of you who find such usage offensive may be offended by this story nonetheless.

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