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韩国老人走上卖淫道路,只为生计

2014-06-30    来源:chinadaily    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

The Korean grandmothers who sell sex

Koreans could once be sure that their children would look after them in their old age, but no longer - many of those who worked hard to transform the country's economy find the next generation has other spending priorities. As a result, some elderly women are turning to prostitution.

Kim Eun-ja sits on the steps at Seoul's Jongno-3 subway station, scanning the scene in front of her. The 71-year-old's bright lipstick and shiny red coat stand out against her papery skin.

Beside her is a large bag, from which comes the clink of glass bottles as she shifts on the cold concrete.

Mrs Kim is one of South Korea's "Bacchus Ladies" - older women who make a living by selling tiny bottles of the popular Bacchus energy drink to male customers.

But often that's not all they're selling. At an age when Korean grandmothers are supposed to be venerated as matriarchs, some are selling sex.

"You see those Bacchus Ladies standing over there?" she asks me. "Those ladies sell more than Bacchus. They sometimes go out with the grandpas and earn money from them. But I don't make a living like that.

"Men do proposition me when I'm standing in the alleyway," she adds. "But I always say, 'No.'"

Mrs Kim says she makes about 5,000 Won ($5, or £3) a day selling the drinks. "Drink up fast," she says. "The police are always watching me. They don't differentiate."

The centre of this underground sex trade is a nearby park in the heart of Seoul. Jongmyo Park is a place where elderly men come to while away their sunset years with a little chess and some local gossip.

It's built around a temple to Confucius, whose ideas on venerating elders have shaped Korean culture for centuries. But under the budding trees outside, the fumbling transactions of its elderly men and women tell the real story of Korean society in the 21st Century.

Women in their 50s, 60, even their 70s, stand around the edges of the park, offering drinks to the men. Buy one, and it's the first step in a lonely journey that ends in a cheap motel nearby.

The men in the park are more willing to talk to me than the women.
Standing around a game of Korean chess, a group of grandfathers watch the match intently. About half the men here use the Bacchus Ladies, they say.

"We're men, so we're curious about women," says 60-year-old Mr Kim.

"We have a drink, and slip a bit of money into their hands, and things happen!" he cackles. "Men like to have women around - whether they're old or not, sexually active or not. That's just male psychology."

Another man, 81 years old, excitedly showed me his spending money for the day. "It's for drinking with my friends," he said. "We can find girlfriends here, too - from those women standing over there. They'll ask us to play with them. They say, 'Oh, I don't have any money,' and then they glue on to us. Sex with them costs 20,000 to 30,000 Won (£11-17), but sometimes they'll give you a discount if they know you."

South Korea's grandparents are victims of their country's economic success.
As they worked to create Korea's economic miracle, they invested their savings in the next generation. In a Confucian society, successful children are the best form of pension.

But attitudes here have changed just as fast as living standards, and now many young people say they can't afford to support themselves and their parents in Korea's fast-paced, highly competitive society.

The government, caught out by this rapid change, is scrambling to provide a welfare system that works. In the meantime, the men and women in Jongmyo Park have no savings, no realistic pension, and no family to rely on. They've become invisible - foreigners in their own land

"Those who rely on their children are stupid," says Mr Kim. "Our generation was submissive to our parents. We respected them. The current generation is more educated and experienced, so they don't listen to us.

"I'm 60 years old and I don't have any money. I can't trust my children to help. They're in deep trouble because they have to start preparing for their old age. Almost all of the old folks here are in the same situation."

Most Bacchus women have only started selling sex later in life, as a result of this new kind of old-age poverty, according to Dr Lee Ho-Sun, who is perhaps the only researcher to have studied them in detail.

One woman she interviewed first turned to prostitution at the age of 68. About 400 women work in the park, she says, all of whom will have been taught as children that respect and honour were worth more than anything.

"One Bacchus woman said to me 'I'm hungry, I don't need respect, I don't need honour, I just want three meals a day," Lee says.
Police, who routinely patrol the area but are rarely able to make an arrest, privately say this problem will never be solved by crackdowns, that senior citizens need an outlet for stress and sexual desire, and that policy needs to change.

But law-enforcement isn't the only problem.

Inside those bags the Bacchus Ladies carry is the source of a hidden epidemic: a special injection supposed to help older men achieve erections - delivered directly into the vein. Dr Lee confirms that the needles aren't disposed of afterwards, but used again - 10 or 20 times.

The results, she says, can be seen in one local survey, which found that almost 40% of the men tested had a sexually transmitted disease despite the fact that some of the most common diseases weren't included in the test. With most sex education classes aimed at teenagers, this has the makings of a real problem. Some local governments have now begun offering sex education clinics especially for seniors.

Hidden in a dingy warren of alleyways in central Seoul, is the place where these lonely journeys end - the narrow corridors of a "love motel" and one of the grey rooms which open off them.

Inside, a large bed takes up most of the space, its thin mattress and single pillow hardly inviting a long night's sleep. On the bed-head is a sticker: for room service press zero; for pornography press three; and if you want the electric blanket, you'll find the wire on the far side of the bed.

So here you have food, sex, and even a little warmth all at the touch of a button. If only it were that simple outside the motel room, in South Korea's rich, hi-tech society.

But for the grandparents who built its fearsome economy, food is expensive, sex is cheap, and human warmth rarely available at any price.

相关内容

据英国广播公司网站(BBC)报道,韩国人过去可以肯定等他们老了,他们的子女会照顾他们,但是现在不行了——那些许多曾辛勤工作改变国家经济的人发现下一代有其它更需要花钱的地方。以至于一些老年妇女走上了卖淫这条路。

金恩子(音译)坐在首尔钟路3号地铁站的台阶上,扫视着眼前的景象。她今年71岁,鲜艳的口红和鲜红的外套将她衬得更显得苍白如纸。

她旁边放着一个大包,她在冰冷的混凝土地上动一下,包里的玻璃瓶就叮当作响。

金夫人是韩国“巴克斯酒女”的一员——老年妇女靠向男性推销巴克斯酒(Bacchus,一种功能饮料)为生。

但是通常他们不只卖酒。在本该被尊为家里的女性长辈的年纪里,有些韩国老年妇女却在卖淫。

“看见站在那里的那些巴克斯酒女了吗?”她问我。“那些妇女不只卖巴克斯。他们有时候和老男人出去,挣他们的钱。但我不干这种营生。”

“我站在小巷里卖酒的时候也有男人提出要跟我过夜,”她又说道,“但我都会说‘不。’”

金夫人说她每天卖酒能挣5000韩元(人民币31元)。“快点喝,”她说。“警察总是盯着我,他们不管我是不是也做这种事。”

“巴克斯女郎”的地下性交易据点是首尔市中心附近的宗庙公园。老年人常到这里下棋,聊聊家长里短消磨时间。

公园在孔庙附近,孔子尊老的思想几个世纪以来塑造了韩国文化。但是,在这些青葱翠绿的树下,这些老年男女偷偷摸摸的交易是21世纪韩国社会的真实写照。

50岁、60岁、甚至70多岁的老年妇女站在公园边上,向男人推销酒水。买一瓶酒,接下来就是去附近廉价的汽车旅馆过夜了。

公园里的男人更愿意跟我而不是跟那些妇女交谈。

一群老爷爷围着一盘韩国象棋,专注地看着棋局。他们说,这里一半的男人找过巴克斯酒女。

“我们是男人,所以我们对女人有好奇心,”60岁的金先生说。

“我们买点酒,然后塞点钱到她们手里,接下来的事就顺理成章了!”他咯咯笑着说。“男人都喜欢女人围着自己,不管他们年纪多大,性欲强烈与否。这就是男人的心理。”

另一个81岁的老人兴奋地和我说他有一天花钱找巴克斯酒女的事。“我是为了和朋友们喝酒,”他说。“我们可以从站在那里的女人里找女朋友。他们要我和她们玩。她们说,‘哦,我没钱,’然后她们就黏上来了。和她们上床要花2-3万韩元(人民币122-183元),不过如果她们认识你,有时会给你打折。”

老年人是韩国经济成功发展的牺牲品。

他们在努力工作创造韩国经济奇迹的同时,将积蓄投资给了下一代。在儒学社会中,成功的子女是最好的养老保障。

但是,随着生活水平的快速提高,观念也在迅速改变。现如今,很多韩国年轻人说,在这个快节奏、竞争激烈的社会里,他们连自己都养不起,更别说养父母了。

政府在社会的快速转变中暴露了短板,仓促间要提供一个行之有效的福利制度。与此同时,宗庙里的老年男女没有积蓄,没有养老金,也没有家人可以依靠。他们为社会所忽视,就像生活在自己故土的外国人。

“那些依靠子女的人都是傻子,”金先生说。“我们这代人对父母唯命是从,我们尊敬他们。现在这一代人教育水平更高,经历得也多,所以他们不听我们的了。”
“我60岁了,也没钱。我不指望孩子养我。他们还要为自己年老准备,都自顾不暇了。这里几乎所有的老人都是这样的情况。”

据李善皓(音译)博士称,因为这种新型的老年贫困,大多数巴克斯酒女到老年才开始卖淫,李博士可能是唯一一位详细研究她们的学者。

她走访的第一个妇女68岁开始卖淫。她说,大约有400名妇女在宗庙公园里进行性交易,所有这些人从小就被教育尊敬和名誉比任何事都重要。

“一个巴克斯酒女跟我说,‘我饿,我不需要尊敬,不需要面子,我只想要一日三餐,’”李博士说。

警察会按时在这片巡逻,但是很少抓他们,他们自己也说这个问题不能通过强制来解决,老年人也需要释放压力和性欲的出口,这项政策需要改变。
但是执法不是唯一的问题。

巴克斯酒女拎的包里装的是隐藏的传染病原:一种可以帮老年人重振雄风的特殊药剂,可直接注射到静脉。李博士证实,这些针管使用后不会被处理,而是再继续使用10到20次。
李博士说,在当地的一项调查里可以发现,在接受测试的人,40%的男性染有性传播疾病,一些在生活中常见的疾病并没有纳入测试中。大多数性教育课程主要针对青少年,老年人不在教育行列,由此产生这一现实问题。一些当地政府开始提供专为老年人开设的性教育诊所。

隐藏在首尔中心城区昏暗而又狭窄拥挤的小巷里的是这些寂寞旅程的终点站——“爱情旅馆”的狭窄走廊和其中一个开着门的灰色房间。

房间里,一张大床占据了大部分空间,薄薄的床垫和孤零零的枕头伴人度过艰难的漫漫长夜。床头上贴着一张纸:客房服务按0,色情服务按3,电热毯的电线在床的另一边。

所以在这里,只要一个按键,就有食物、性,甚至些许温暖。要是汽车旅馆房间外面的韩国富裕、高科技的社会也是这样简单就好了。

但是对于那些为如今冷漠无情的经济做出贡献的老年人来说,食物是昂贵的,性是廉价的,而人与人之间的温情不论多少价钱也得不到。



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