Does her mother know the character of the place and the man she is with?" One thing should be made very clear to the girl who comes up to the city, and that is that the ordinary ice cream parlor is very likely to be a spider's web for her entanglement.The second significant action at the local level was to close the brothels and the red light districts.
This is one of several acts of protective legislation aimed at moral reform during the progressive era.
Its primary stated intent was to address prostitution, immorality, and human trafficking, particularly where trafficking was for the purposes of prostitution.
According to Connelly, such concerns represented a "hysterical" version of genuine and long-standing issues arising from the concentration of young women from rural backgrounds in the expanding cities of the era, many of whom were drawn into prostitution for "mundane" economic reasons.
A number of Vice Commission reports had drawn attention to the issue.
They worked in New York City's Chinatown and in other cities to rescue young white and Chinese girls from forced prostitution, and helped pass the Mann Act to make interstate sex trafficking a federal crime.
Livingston publicly discussed her past as a prostitute and made the claim that she was abducted and developed a drug problem as a sex slave in a Chinese man's home, narrowly escaped, and experienced a Christian conversion.
Although her claim was unsupported by evidence, her story exemplified the stereotypes used to pass the Mann Act—fear of foreigners, especially Chinese men; abduction and drugging in order to be raped and enslaved; a narrow escape; and salvation through Christian conversion.
Other groups like the Woman's Christian Temperance Union and Hull House focused on children of prostitutes and poverty in community life while trying to pass protective legislation.
United States (1917), which held that "illicit fornication", even when consensual, constituted an "immoral purpose." In addition to its stated purpose of preventing human trafficking, the law was used to prosecute unlawful premarital, extramarital, and interracial relationships.
The penalties would be applied to men whether or not the woman involved consented and, if she had consented, the woman could be considered an accessory to the offense.
This is perhaps especially true of those ice cream saloons and fruit stores kept by foreigners.