Thursday, December 06, 2007


December 6, 2007

David Beers
The Tyee

Mr Beers

I was quite shocked that the Tyee has decided to publish Ms Baptie who has written about the Pickton case for the online journal Orato.

The Tyee, I assumed, perhaps incorrectly, was a progressive online zine that brought forward hard hitting stories, around homelessness, poverty and marginalizing issues that often mainstream media ignore or overlook.

I was completely saddened when I learned that the Tyee chose to run a piece from Ms Baptie.

Ms Baptie has written in a regressive manner on the plight of sex trade workers. She is an admitted Abolitionist, which is contrary to the advancement of human rights and dignity for those actively involved in the sex trade. The only way to have abolition is to criminalize prostitution and sex trade workers.

Ms Baptie also has personalized issues for sex trade workers. In one of her pieces, on June 20, 2007, she (The Flood of Lynne Ellingsen's Testimony)accuses sex trade workers of being liars.

What is very hurtful and harmful, is that abolition of the sex trade and abolitionists further marginalize sex trade workers.

Providing a platform for Ms Baptie, which the Tyee has, is one thing, however, I think the Tyee owes its readers disclosure.

It should be made clear that Ms Baptie favours abolition and this stance is contrary to the de-criminalization stance favourd by most progressive thinking people. It is also a stance promoted by sex trade workers and their advocates and many progressive politicians.

Jamie Lee Hamilton


At 10:29 AM, Anonymous Monte Paulsen said...

[[ And here is The Tyee's response to Ms. Lee's letter: ]]

Hello Jamie Lee,

Yes, The Tyee republished Ms. Baptie's insightful observations on her own experiences and on the Pickton trial. It was labeled as a "Life" story, not a "news" article. I believe her writing stands for itself.

No, today's article did not address the larger and more complicated issues of legalization vs. abolition. I agree with you the most responsible way to write about that topic would be to include a diversity of viewpoints.

I hope you will agree with me that the excerpts published by The Tyee did not broach this separate issue.

If you feel it necessary to raise that issue at this time, you are welcome to do so in the comments section that follows Ms. Baptie's story. Since you are well-known in our community, I would encourage you to do so under your own name.


Monte Paulsen
Investigative Editor
The Tyee

cc: David Beers


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