Slot houses are popping up all over Pennsylvania thanks to the state's (er, commonwealth's) push to make gambling fun for everyone. It's supposed to alleviate property taxes, presumably by taking the money from gullible old people. While towns near Philadelphia have suckered the saps already, Philadelphia proper is still in the works to get some casino royals, although the plans continue on full speed ahead.
I don't understand why gambling is allowed but prostitution still remains illegal. It can't be an issue of morality, because gambling is just as "sinful" as prostitution, it just involves less fluids. The opposition to prostitution also can't be about money, because even though gambling brings in tons of money, prostitutes would still pay taxes and probably even go through a costly licensing process ("Pennsylvania Certified Whore"). In other words, there's money to be made. I don't even get the crime argument, because what's the difference between a high-class brothel and a high-class casino, besides the difference in odors?
I think the problem is related to the actual sex. Some of it can simply be puritan interests in denying people their pursuit of coital, but I believe more of it rests on the idea that society simply does not want women to be able to control themselves. Is it so wrong for women to make a living based on something most give away for free (which isn't really true; usually there's a lengthy courting process or even the purchase of a few drinks which costs more than a fair share of dollars). It's free market capitalism at work, providing a service people want for a fee people are willing to pay. I know some claim that it's dangerous or detrimental for women, but giving women the power to earn money with their bodies is probably the only danger with which some people are concerned. Of course, I can't really prove my case one way or another, can I? It sounds ominous, though.
In the meantime, however, there is a legal form of prostitution, and it's called dating (or worse, marriage). In this "dating," gifts, services and other tangibles are given by men to women in exchange for sexual intercourse and nagging (note: heterosexual relationships only). That's not how it really happens, but I'm being facetious. Making generalizations about specific groups of people to trick them into buying their products is the raison d'être of advertisers. At Christmas, there are a massive influx of diamond advertisements, presumably because men will feel the need to drop a large portion of their paycheck to give their wife or significant other something they will be too afraid to wear in public merely as a token of their appreciation.
Anyway, whether you can afford diamonds or not, Merry Christmas, except for those non-Christian religious types too stupid to celebrate the secular aspects of Christmas. Enjoy your Chinese food and loneliness, losers.