Tag Archives: slavery

The Fight Against Human Trafficking In Chicago, Illinois

May 16-21, 2009, Traffickfree.org is organizing a city-wide Stop Traffick praxis project in Chicago. Stop Traffick is an initiative “to end human trafficking in Chicago.” The video linked to the image below shows the general lack of understanding that exists around human trafficking in the USA. It’s more real and more pervasive than any of us would choose to admit.

stoptraffick

If you’re in Chicago, take a look and see if this is something you could be a part of.

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Today The Goal Is Modern Slavery Awareness

Say something.

Here is story about slavery in the United States I mention in the video.

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The Day My God Died

One day you are a child.

The next day, you are a slave. Your childhood has ended.

These are people who have been taken from their homes against their will, transported to a new world in which they have no family, no friends, no one to help them. They do not even speak the language. They are at the mercy of their abductors, who frequently abuse them with severe beatings and withholding of food, to ensure their cooperation and break them. Eventually, they will all be broken.

There is a room, hidden and cramped and dirty. In this place the bidding and sale of humans is done. Those who desire slaves to live in human bondage and be forced to do their bidding, can make an offer.For an agreed amount of money, typically only a few hundred dollars, the buyer can leave with his new purchase: a human being. Too often a child.

What is this world, this place? Is it a history lesson that tells of 19th century enslavement of Africans in the New World known as the United States?

No. This is our world, today, the here and now. We live in a world where slavery is alive and well.Hundreds of thousands of people are trafficked and sold into slavery every day, all over the world – including the United States of America. Many of these are children, and most are sold into the sex trade.

This is the reality for far too many children and young adults in the world today. Human trafficking has surpassed drug trafficking to become the second biggest illegal trade in the world, only behind arms.

Last night I was invited to a screening of a documentary called “The Day My God Died.” This film, narrated by Tim Robbins, focuses on the real human suffering of a handful of young Nepalese girls who were trafficked over the border into India and sold into brothels. These girls were eventually rescued – after enduring years of a hell that included rape, beatings and being forced to have sex with up to 50 men each day, all for the profit of their captors.

As the documentary tells us, many of these survivors refer to the day they were trafficked into slavery as the day their god died. Many endure numerous abortions during their captivity, carry out pregnancies from their rapists, and contract HIV/AIDS. One teenager tells of her ordeal the first day she arrived at the brothel: being beaten when she refused to have sex, and eventually raped by numerous men until she stopped resisting. She was seven years old at the time.

Another young woman in the film, Jyoti, returns to the brothel where she was held after her rescue, in order to help find and rescue other girls. Jyoti shows the secret hiding rooms where the brothel owners keep the girls, and says, “Once the door closes behind you, no one ever knows you’re there.”

Don’t let the door close forever on these girls. Watch the documentary yourself.

For more information about the Nepalese organization that helps prevent trafficking, find these girls once they have been sold into the sex trade, and provides a home and rehabilitation after their rescue, visit:

Maiti Nepal – the organization in Nepal; or
Friends of Maiti Nepal – its supporters in the United States; or
Make a Donation Here

Thank you, and namaste.
Shelley

More information can be found in Shelley Seale’s upcoming book, The Weight of Silence: Invisible Children of India.

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Open Your Eyes To Modern Slavery (Call And Response)

“Never forget, justice is what loves looks like in public.” These are the words of Dr. Cornel West.

“The first feature rockumentary to expose the the world’s 27 million most terrifying secrets” is set to open nationally on October 10, 2008.  Click the banner below to watch a trailer for Call And Response.

I have not seen this film yet, only the preview. But I know that it’s this kind of work that can help open the eyes of the world to the painful truth that of modern slavery. The truth that in 2007, “Slave Traders made more money than Google, Nike and Starbucks combined.

Make plans to go see this movie. I know it will be painful. I know it would be easier to NOT go see this film. Do it anyway. Open your eyes to the reality of modern slavery.

100% of the profits are going to fund global projects on the front lines of the issue.

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A Crime So Monstrous: Face-to-Face with Modern-Day Slavery

I’ve just ordered this book and plan to review it here in the near future.

Here is the first paragraph of chapter one.

For our purposes, let’s say that the center of the moral universe is in Room S-3800 of the UN Secretariat, Manhattan. From here, you are some five hours from being able to negotiate the sale, in broad daylight, of a healthy boy or girl. Your slave will come in any color you like, as Henry Ford said, as long as it’s black. Maximum age: fifteen. He or she can be used for anything. Sex or domestic labor are the most frequent uses, but it’s up to you.

It should give you an idea of where the book is leading. The first chapter explains just how easy it is to buy a child slave in our modern society. Don’t close your eyes.

Buy: A Crime So Monstrous: Face-to-Face with Modern-Day Slavery: E. Benjamin Skinner: Books.

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A Powerful Video Highlighting Child Slavery

I was alerted to this video by a search of Twitter.

Alec Couros posted “RadioHead Video Message on Human Trafficking” to his twitter stream, which led me to the post highlighting the RadioHead music video below. Alec, thank you for this and for unknowingly kicking me back into this fight. I’ve been neglectful.

Some things cost more than we realize.

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What Does Modern Slavery Look Like?


Modern Day Slavery
“a case in Tulsa, where there was a guy who owned a welding company, who began experimenting with temp workers he imported from India. And decided that it would be a good idea to keep them on factory premises. So very quickly, things escalated into a situation where he was hiring an armed guard to sit outside of the factory, just to kind of remind them that it might not be such a great idea to leave.”
Mobile post sent by ResPres using Utterz. Replies. mp3

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