I can hardly believe that something so prevalent in our society can be happening every day, 24/7 all around me. And if you’re like me, you’re so busy focusing on living good life, helping others to have a good life, and making the world a better place, that one day you wake up and say, “I don’t know about human trafficking in America,” when you first hear of it.
At first, you think, this must be some kind of political propaganda-spin to sidetrack the world, to control or manipulate me, some new ploy to distract me from my ministry, a new false headline to throw me off-track and get me emotionally distraught to rob my power and make me weak.
I’ve heard the murmuring in the background of the media, but it wasn’t until my brother said he was actively seeking to address the concerns about human trafficking in America in Washington DC that I began to understand this to be a very real thing. Not somewhere abroad, in some far-off foreign country, but right here, in the United States of America.
Not be awakened by someone who was a victim of human traffic within my circle of influence kept me blind to the prevalence of human trafficking, even though throughout my ministry and work, I’ve come across victims of many human travesties (some, you could barely imagine, if at all). But no human trafficking victims.
I didn’t know that it was a real thing in Washington DC, and a huge issue closer to home, in California. Other states where human trafficking is a growing concern include Texas, New York, and Florida.
When the underlying vibration about human trafficking might lend you to think that this is a method of exploiting humans for sex acts, that is only one-third truth. The other two-thirds of human trafficking includes forced labor and servitude, the exploitation of children and organ harvesting.
I didn’t know victims of human trafficking are women, children, and grown men.
As per the United Nations, the term “people trafficking” refers to the exploitation of individuals through recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of people. This can involve domestic servitude, forced labor, removal of organs, prostitution or other forms of sexual exploitation. Sadly, it is a lucrative business generating approximately $32 billion annually worldwide, making it the second most profitable crime after drug trafficking, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) 2006 data. Each year, around 1 to 2 million men, women, and children fall prey to human trafficking, while traffickers earn between $4,000 and $50,000 per trafficked person, depending on the victim’s origin and destination.
I didn’t know that our current socio-economic condition lends itself to creating increased opportunities for human trafficking to flourish in America. Yes, some people are abducted, yet others step through the open door leading to a trap set to capture the mind of someone amidst the struggle for survival in a troubled world.
Next thing they know, they wake up somewhere they’d rather not be, doing something they would not otherwise do, with no apparent way to reverse their condition. This is the modern-day slavery which is taking place every day in every State of the Union.
Just like the trafficking of illegal arms and drugs, human trafficking is a highly lucrative trade, taking place under the radar, behind the scenes, with the majority of us none the wiser.
Who knew? Who could even imagine such acts would be taking place right under our noses?
Sure, we’ve heard about it, but couldn’t possibly believe it. And if you think it doesn’t affect you? Think again. Someone in the town where you live was recently absorbed into the trade of human trafficking recently, and you didn’t even know.
I mean, you don’t know what you don’t know.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Neither did I.
Now that you know, what are you going to do about it?