As I sit comfortably in my chair to write this, I still have a hard time wrapping my head around the reality-- the reality that there are children living in slavery all around the world. If you are anything like me, you think of the American South whenever you think of slavery. Of Africans being shipped in herds to America where they would go on to live for years with no money, no education, and no hope for a real future. Those days are over, right? Wrong.
Today, there are 27 million people living in slavery. Children are some of the most vulnerable to this – it is estimated that two children are sold every minute. They wake up one day in the comfort of their homes and the next in an undisclosed location, often never to see their family or loved ones again as they forced into a life of prostitution or labor.
Perhaps you have seen the movie “Taken”. Perhaps you know that things like this are going on, but aren’t quiet aware of the magnitude. The aforementioned numbers will only get larger as the business gets more lucrative. It is estimated that 32 billion dollars is generated from human trafficking each year. What’s even more shocking is that these acts aren’t just taking place in third world countries, they are happening right in your own backyard. On August 10, 2009 a slavery ring was busted in Long Island, only miles away from New York City: http://bitterqueen.typepad.com/friends_of_ours/2009/08/alleged-sex-ring-busted-on-long-island.html
So what can a regular person do about it? And who would want to get involved with something which holds consequences so terrifying anyway? Well, getting involved in the fight against slavery is something anyone can do, and it doesn’t have to be a scary endeavor. Every voice that raises awareness on the subjects contributes to the fight to save these children, to heal them, and to finally stop this epidemic in its tracks.
Love 146 is an international organization dedicated to combating child sex slavery & exploitation and restoring survivors. Just recently, a group of New Yorkers decided to form a local task force of Love 146 to help contribute to this cause. I will be the voice of New York City’s task force, using this blog as a forum to raise awareness and to keep you informed of our progress. To learn more about Love 146, please visit our website at: http://www.love146.org/pages/page.asp?page_id=21460
First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me.
By Pastor Niemoller