| ||57. "How do the French themselves feel about all the street-walkers ? How can they close their eyes to all the immorality ?"|
They don't close their eyes to it. That's the first difference between French and American attitudes toward prostitution. The French recognize that prostitution exists, and regulate it. Before the war, all prostitutes were inspected regularly, licensed, and had their activities strictly limited to specific areas. The French think that legalized prostitition gives health protection to tha general public and that the restriction of prostitution to known areas protects decent women from being molested.
Today there is undoubtedly an abnormal number of prostitutes in France. Many girls who cannot live on their wages take to the street. Thousands of French women have lost their sweethearts, husbands, homes. The same thing is happening all over Europe. It is another of the appalling consequences of the war Germany started.
A Frenchman who took a walk in Paris recently, said. to an Americaan friend, "In forty years of living in Paris, I have never seen so many prostitutes! And in respectable, neighhorhoods ! It's disgraceful !"
The French, by the way, are shocked by the rude way in which GIs talk to a woman, and by the number of unpleasant experiences decent French women have had with intoxicated and amorous American soldiers.