Sex for Sale, Kids for Sale, Sex with Kids for Sale (Bad News Week,2)

Yesterday was the start of a series looking at bad news and asking what the good news has to say about it. It’s sobering to actually think about what happens in our very own land–and most of us would prefer to remain intoxicated on spiritual highs than to reach into the pits where real people are suffering in a living hell. And yes, that includes the highs of living and working in the relative security of the academy. This writer gets that. If the problem of drug doesn’t get one thinking a little about the plight of others, let’s look at another, as described by the same source as yeaterday’s info.

Perhaps even more alarming is the rise of human trafficking in America.
When I was going through school, I was taught that slavery had been abolished in the United States.
But that was a lie.
Right now, thousands upon thousands of Americans are living as slaves. Most of them are sex slaves. As you read this, there are women all over America that are literally chained to beds in dark rooms where men pay their “owners” to have sex with them.
The following stats about human trafficking come from a recent Detroit Free Press article….
• Human trafficking is a $32-billion industry worldwide.
• Up to 2 million people are trafficked worldwide every year. Of those, 15,000-18,000 are in the U.S.
• Eight in 10 human trafficking cases involve the sex industry; the others involve labor trafficking.
• In 2010, 2,515 human trafficking cases were under investigation in the U.S.
• Eighty-three percent of victims in confirmed sex trafficking cases in the U.S. in 2010 were American citizens
Many Americans would be absolutely horrified to learn what goes on behind closed doors in America.
All over the nation tonight, vicious monsters will be selling or “renting” young children to other vicious monsters for sex.
The following story of one human trafficking victim comes from a recent Fox News article….
Today, Keisha Head is a wife and mother of three. But more than decade ago, she was the victim of a notorious human trafficker.
At 16-years old, Head says she was being sold on the streets of Atlanta for sex.
“I did not know that a normal, average man who was a preacher, who was a lawyer, who was a senator – could turn into this monster,” Head said. “That is the scariest moment when you are amongst people who claim to be normal yet they purchase you and they turn into these monsters. They rape you. They beat you. And then act as if they’re normal. These are not your normal pedophiles.”
When you push morality out of the schools and out of public life, this is the kind of thing that starts happening.
Thousands upon thousands of other women “work for themselves” on the streets of America. Some are willing to let strangers have sex with them for next to nothing.
For example, one woman in Los Angeles was recently arrested for approaching customers at one McDonald’s and offering sexual favors in exchange for Chicken McNuggets.

There are so many directions this information could take us; I’m hoping that comments from readers will explore some of them. One that I will touch on is why this monstrous evil has come so forcefully into our culture. Is it a matter of desperation in supplying necessities (such as Chicken McNuggets or other morsels for survival)? Is it a strictly economic decision? Is it greed? Is it a loss of moral fiber? All of the above?

Is the emphasis on sexuality in so much of our public media creating on one hand a demand by continually placing sex on our minds, and on the other a commodification of our bodies–making them nothing more than salable assets? Do other people become goods and services which we either consume ourselves or use for profit on the market? At least one thing should be clear: to the extent there is a law of supply and demand, the rules of economics applies here as well. With an increasing suppply, the price drops. And it is all of us that are cheapened in the process. Another market principle is at work: if the demand would decrease, the incentive to supply the goods would also fall.

Perhaps you and I are not the “normal, average man who was a preacher, who was a lawyer, who was a senator,” who becomes a monster. Judging by statistics on pornographic website visits–by both men and, increasingly, by women–there must be a lot of such normal folks creating a demand. Each visit lowers our estimation of the value any person holds; each one moves the viewer further along the monster scale.

Last week’s posts about the raisng of our estimation of animals to the moral standing of people has another side. Rather than raising our estimation of animals to our status, perhaps it has lowered our own standing to that of amoral animals, where virtue and worth are simply manufactured categories to the extent they exist at all. As Christians who believe and embrace the concept of the image of God, we have a lot of work ahead of us in restoring the only true source of dignity and (non-economic) value to human beings. How do we do that? What is the good news, and how do we put it out there where it is needed?