insight from the real world about trafficking:
Dear Free-Range Kids:
First, I want to thank you for your crusade!Â It has inspired me to be a more relaxed mother & help my friends relax a little too.Â We are all new at this, my son is the oldest & he’s turning 4 next week, so I like to think I set the example a little bit.Â I want all our kids to actually be able to PLAY together one day, and for all us adults to be able to retreat to another room & be adult friends again.Â I despise how parenting these days means you stare at your child while they play.
Secondly, this link is why I am writing to you today.Â This was a local story about a woman who survived actually being human trafficked.Â I thought it was interesting, it is such a stark contrast to the fear-based stories of human trafficking that I frequently see shared on Facebook by paranoid parents.Â The woman was in her late teens, was lured & sold by a trusted family member, and seemingly in plain-sight before she escaped.
Where’s the part about the two strange gentlemen hovering around three young children in Ikea?Â Where’s the part about how she was snatched off a playground, to the horror of multiple hovering adults?Â Of course, this woman’s ordeal is harrowing, and she is a survivor and role model for speaking out. But I just couldn’t get past the details of her capture and how profoundly different they are than what many are lead to believe.
Jessica Galterio, Conn.
I know a woman who was sex-trafficked as a child. She is now an activist against sex-trafficking. AND she was trafficked by a known and trusted person – her nanny.
A friend of mine attended recently a class about sex traffiking awareness in her little, rather rural community. She was shocked and horrified with what she learned and had to talked back into the real reality (which the class did teach). Amazingly enough, all of the sex traffiking discovered in her community was all friends and family members. Every single case.
So sex trafficking is done by acquaintances, community members, friends, and even family who have gained our trust–just like most kidnappings, rapes, and cases of child molestation.
Is it too taboo to discuss how trusted community members and loved ones are most often perpetuate these violent crimes? Is that why we obsess so much over nebulous-but-unbiquitous phantom assailants?
“Is it too taboo to discuss how trusted community members and loved ones are most often perpetuate these violent crimes?”
I’d say no. Most people I know have discussed this point and are aware of it. And it makes sense. Most accidents occur near your home, but that’s because most DRIVING occurs near your home. Who has the most access to people? Friends, family, and coworkers. So who’s going to commit the most crimes against them, of all kinds? Friends, family, and coworkers. Strangers–having little access and being carefully watched these days when they do have access–have pretty much no opportunity to harm children and young adults.
“Is that why we obsess so much over nebulous-but-unbiquitous phantom assailants?”
I don’t believe so. I think we obsess over such things because 1) doing so signals that we’re Good Parents and Constantly Vigilant, 2) doing so makes us famous, and 3) we’re trained to think of worst-case scenarios and act as if those were absolute certainties.
Crime, by its nature, is anti-inductive–a criminal who operates in a distinct pattern is soon called a prisoner. So to a certain extent trying to predict crime necessarily involves playing “What if”. However, most of us lack the training, expertise, and experience to make a good judgment about that. We don’t know that we’re too ignorant to adequately evaluate criminal behavior. Add to that the fact that becoming internet-famous is as easy as “I was at Wal-Mart and the cashier tried to take my baby!!!” and you get a feedback loop that encourages this sort of obsession. And the risks are all down the road–if you destroy your child’s confidence and cripple their ability to handle the real world they may not know it until they’re in college, or even later. Humans are really, really bad at evaluating such risks, and tend to treat them as not existing.
A couple of Sundays ago, the Pastor in our church said in his sermon that sexual morality in our nation is getting so bad that we can no longer let our children out of our sight. I just thought to myself, here we go again….sigh.
As bizarre as 18-year-old females being trafficked by their own family is, I guess it’s too boring of a story that does not measure up to 5-year-old boys being trafficked from Ikea or Wal*Mart when their parents turn their heads for 10 seconds.
This does a good job of showing how the majority of those who are sex trafficked are in tenuous situations like this young woman. She left a bad family situation only to end up being trafficked. Many run away from home. They usually aren’t pulled off of a sidewalk or out of a restroom.
Can someone please define sex trafficking for me? I am confused. What are people referring to when they talk about it, generally? Does it only mean people who are taken from their homes and forced to perform sex work for no pay? If you get to keep some of the money are you still a trafficking victim? What if you aren’t taken anywhere but instead your family member brings people to your house and coerces you to do sex work? I guess my question is basically, what makes something trafficking instead of prostitution– forcing the person to relocate? I’m not trying to come off as disrespectful or anything, I just really want to know way everyone is talking about. Thanks.
Ironically, it’s the popular narrative of the supposedly huge market for kiddie porn, etc. that makes psychopaths think they will get rich quick by exploiting children. But the reality is that there is no huge market for kiddie porn, baby prostitutes, etc., never was, and probably never wil be. If anybody wants to get rich quick, the known goldmine is adult porn. Fame grabbers, please stop encourgaing psychopaths to go after kids.
Yep. It’s not the stranger, it’s those you know. The ones who want to harm your children are the ones who will deliberately place themselves into your life so that they *become* the ones you kinow.
The creepy guy who becomes a soccer coach and is just a little bit overly-kind, the nice young man who befriends the single mother and offers to babysit. Those are the ones to watch, not the random guys in the supermarket or the IKEA store.
Note I said the ones to watch. Not the ones to be completely hysterical about and decide are automatically child molestors. But just watch them. And teach your children all about bad touching and uncomfortable feelings.
Caiti – The US government Office on Trafficking in Persons defines sex trafficking as “a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act is under the age of 18 years.” By the definition, it requires that the person who is engaging in a commercial sex endeavor is not doing it freely and voluntarily. However, you will frequently see any sex act involving a pimp/madam defined as sex trafficking and some will go as far as to define any commercial sex act as being sex trafficking.
“Can someone please define sex trafficking for me?”
This is either A) when a person is forced to perform sexual acts for money, with the money (or most of it) going to someone else, or B) the sale, trade, or transportation of people for such purposes.
This makes “sex trafficking” a subset of “human trafficking”, which is the same, except instead of performing sex work specifically, people who are human trafficked are forced to do any kind of work.
” what makes something trafficking instead of prostitution”
Sex trafficking and prostitution overlap. Prostitution occurs where sexual acts are performed for money, sex trafficking happens when the person getting the money (or at least, most of the money) isn’t the person doing the work. The difference has nothing to do with where things happen… a person can be trafficked right in their own home.
Consider the situation where prostitution is legal. If the prostitute works for him or herself and keeps all the money, there is no trafficking. If the owner of a brothel employs prostitutes who pay fees or a percentage but knew what they were signing up for and are free to leave at any time, there is no trafficking, even though the brothel owner makes money from the sexual services for others, because they are actually doing work and being compensated for it… they provide the location (and cover all the expenses thereof), they provide booking and scheduling and security, and advertising and promotion, etc… and all of these are likely to be tightly regulated by the government.
Now imagine a pimp in a stereotypical arrangement. A number of women working illegal prostitution, forced to keep going until they produce enough revenue to make the pimp happy. The pimp keeps all the money, spending some on food, housing, clothing (and probably drugs) for the prostitutes. Women who try to leave their pimps are likely to be beaten and mistreated. That form of prostitution is sex trafficking.
Note that there’s two “paths” to sex-trafficking… the pimp in the previous paragraph is one, but there is another. This one involves staffing a brothel with prostitutes who are brought from somewhere else, often in the form of illegal immigration. The person or people who bring these prostitutes into the country promise them jobs but then force them into prostitution when they arrive. They’re illegal immigrants, so they can’t turn to law enforcement for relief and even if they do escape, they are often reluctant to take part in any kind of legal proceeding against their captors.
If you want a tall tale this druggie claimed to have been traffic. So the cops with all their brains drive her around to spot the house where it took place. She pointed out one. The oh so smart cops watch 2 girls walk from a block into the house and said that proves it. Now let get the warrent and bust into the house.
Guess what, no trafficking just an ordinary house with ordinary people inside. And of course the cops say they followed the book so they’re not wrong.
Stats don’t lie. Most of these crimes are committed against the victims by people they already know and probably trust. It’s the fear mongering, the “broken telephone” conversations, the sensationalism of media to generate ratings and profits, and the mindset of the public over the last couple of decades that this sort of mentality has risen. We’ve been fed inaccurate information, and some people (more than enough to start the ball rolling) have the minds that are susceptible coercion or manipulation. And they spread it to friends and family. Who in turn spread to others. To where we are now. People have normalized many things that weren’t normal before. It’s an easy fix. But harder to get people to start normalizing the old normal again.
I’ve done a fair amount of reading on actual modern-day slavery. The one thing that gets mentioned more often and prominently than anything else is the use of unpayable “debts”. If someone gets you out of an East Bloc war zone or 3rd-world hellhole, they can always say you “owe” them, economically and socially, and there’s always one more little thing they can add to the balance. Call it “carrot as stick”.