“The categories we have for things like pornography, stripping, prostitution — we tend to think of them as really separate categories. But if you’re actually in the sex industry, they’re quite seamless.”
— Donna M. Hughes, professor of Women’s Studies at the University of Rhode Island
Striving to end modern-day slavery
There are few words that shock as much as “slavery.” Many think that slavery ended 150 years with President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and the end of the Civil War. Yet, slavery still flourishes today in the United States and globally. The global scourge of human trafficking for labor and sexual servitude is nothing less than modern-day slavery. The United Nations estimates that as many as 800,000 people are trafficked across national boundaries every year. Of trafficking victims, 80 percent are female and 50 percent are children.
Thankfully, there has been a major education campaign in the United States over the past decade. More and more people are waking up to the fact that trafficking isn’t a problem only overseas, but is happening in America and even in our own communities and neighborhoods.
Brushfires isn’t setting trafficking policy or building safe house, although we readily support these efforts. Rather, our role in this fight is to highlight for people how feeder industries such as pornography shops, strip clubs, massage parlors and Internet pornography contribute to this problem by creating a sexual appetite that is satisfied only through the abuse of real women and children.
Education is important, but there are action steps the average person can take to limit the demand for trafficking victims. Review the resources here, and begin to spread the word about the deepest harms of pornography and sex businesses. People’s lives depend on your actions.
Copyright © 2013, Daniel Weiss. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
Dig deeper with the following online resources:
The Seamless Fabric
Commercial sexual exploitation poses a growing threat to America’s youth—and pornography leads the way.
Do you know how porn and sex trafficking are connected? How a life of purity is an act of justice?
The Slave and the Porn Star: Sexual Trafficking and Pornography
Curbing pornography can reduce sex trafficking.
Prostitution, Trafficking, and Cultural Amnesia
What we must not know in order to keep the business of sexual exploitation running smoothly.
Myths & Facts about Trafficking for Legal and Illegal Prostitution
Eighteen common myths about trafficking.
Prostitution and Trafficking – Quick Facts
Introductory facts and descriptive summaries for those wanting a deeper understanding of the issues.
A comparative examination of sex tourism and trafficking in Jamaica, Japan, the Netherlands, and the United States.
The National Report on Domestic Sex Trafficking
A comprehensive report chronicling the trafficking of children in America.
Comparing Sex Buyers and Non-Sex Buyers
Paper presented at Psychologists for Social Responsibility Annual Meeting, July 15, 2011.
The Protected Innocence Challenge
Every state is graded on 41 key legislative components that must be addressed in order to effectively respond to the crime of domestic minor sex trafficking.
(Links are provided for information purposes only and do not necessarily represent an endorsement of all the views expressed in these resources.)