Giving an outlet helps everybody

Tay Tay linked to an interesting paper. It’s on sex work and whether adult establishments increase crime.

From the paper:

We find that these businesses decrease sex crime by 13% per police precinct one week after the opening, and have no effect on other types of crimes. The results imply that the reduction is mostly driven by potential sex offenders frequenting these establishments rather than committing crimes.

It seems that giving a legal outlet cuts down on crime. Don’t have negative externalities other than our values. Can’t help but see a link to legalized weed.

They also write in the abstract:

We also rule out the possibility that other mechanisms are driving our results, such as an increase in the number of police officers, a reduction in the number of street prostitutes and a possible reduction in the number of potential victims in areas where these businesses opened. The effects are robust to using alternative measures of sex crimes.

What accounts for an adult establishment I hear you ask?

The New York State Department of State classifies adult entertainment establishments as businesses that regularly feature movies, photographs, or live performances that emphasize ”specified anatomical areas” or ”specified sexual activities” and excludes minors by reason of age. We define such businesses more narrowly, only considering four types – strip clubs, gentleman’s clubs, adult entertainers and escort girl services.

The italics are mine because it’s a funny sentence.