About a year ago, a sex-trafficking ring was busted in Nashville, TN. That’s right! In the buckle of the Bible belt, the most horrendous crime imaginable was taking place. Not long after that, our local newspaper ran a story that said 85% of counties in Tennessee had reported some type of sex trafficking activity in their county.
Human trafficking, mainly in the sex industry, is not a problem in some remote part of the world! It is a growing problem right here in the United States, and most people are not even aware of its existence.
The February edition of Sojourners magazine has an excellent article that outlines this growing, hidden, problem. The title of the article is, “Human Kind’s Most Savage Cruelty.” I have tried to link the article to the title, but I am not sure it will work because it is a paid subscription. If it doesn’t work, go to sojo.net and subscribe to the magazine, or at least buy the February issue. One of the claims the article makes is that at least 100,000 girls are trafficked as sex slaves within the United States, and the average age for becoming a sex slave (in the U.S.) is 14. The number of sex slaves easily surpasses the 1 million mark worldwide. The article also points out that while the U.S. government spends over $20 billion a year fighting the war on drugs, only $60 million a year is spent on fighting human trafficking.
I will admit that I am horrified and overwhelmed by this social justice issue; so overwhelmed that I don’t know what to do. But the first step has got to be awareness and education. With that in mind, here are a few links to some recent articles about this problem.
Sex Trafficking in the United States: Children Across America are Unseen Victims
Sex trafficking in the U.S. called ‘epidemic’
One thing I want to add: There are many people who believe when a child (especially a white female) is abducted, if a family member did not do the kidnapping, and if a “bady” is not found, then that child has been abducted and sold into slavery.
It is time we, as the church, jumped into this social justice issue and get dirty.
I am glad that you are bringing this issue to the attention of your readers. This is an area that the church has maybe been too scared to get involved in because we would have to get “dirty”. Another website on this subject you may find interesting is for the ministry Hookers For Jesus. It was started by Annie Lobert, who came out of a life of prostitution. They minister to people affected by human trafficking and sexual exploitation. She also happens to be married to Oz Fox, the guitarist for Stryper.
Thanks Eric. I will check out the website.
Oh I guess I didn’t post the link. It’s http://www.hookersforjesus.net/
Trafficking and enslavement sadly appears to be on the increase. It is shocking that there are more enslaved people now that in the Wilberforce’s time . The majority are women and girls. Have you see the CNN documentary film Not My Life? If not check it out on http://www.notmylife.org.
Thanks for the post.