You know it. I know it. Slavery still exists. I’ve written more than my fair share of blog posts here about this issue. It’s a huge problem. My blog is dedicated to justice and change, and slavery is one of the greatest injustices of our time. There are more slaves now than any other time in human history. The price of a human being has never been cheaper. The income from this crime ranks just behind drugs as the most lucrative underground trade.
This issue spreads across socioeconomic, racial and geographical barriers. It affects young girls born and raised in Georgia and women born in villages in Cambodia. Women are locked in brothels in Mumbai while men are forced to labor in brick factories outside Delhi. Police officers in Woodstock GA ship women to the United States and force them to work without pay. (Don’t believe me? Go here). There have been over 1,000 people rescued from Florida’s tomato fields in the last 15 years. (again, happy to provide a link). You can buy a child in Haiti in less than 24 hours (here ya go again, link). Oh, and let’s not forget the allegations of a WalMart fish supplier forcing people to work without pay in Louisianna (link). Recently, a pimp in Atlanta was sentenced to life in prison for his human trafficking crimes (link). Unfortunately, I could keep going with the news articles. If you’d like more just let me know.
Stories affect us most in life. I’ll never forget the young boy I met in India in 2007. He was ten years old, and had been working in a factory for five years. His story shook me. Then, I met three beautiful ladies last year at a Not for Sale event in Atlanta. All three were survivors of heinous human trafficking crimes. Tears came to my eyes as I heard their stories. The methods of control can only be described as torture. These stories, and the articles I posted are the faces of slavery today. It is not over, it is still here, and we must stop it.
William Wilberforce, Thomas Clarkson, Abraham Lincoln, Harriet Beecher-Stowe, Thadeus Stevens, and Frederick Douglass never gave up. They didn’t let naysayers tell them that we would always have this issue and that it would never get better. These amazing abolitionists stood their ground, and they fought for the victims of this crime. We must do the same. If you are free, if you have a voice, you can do something. You just have to start. Today has been declared as National Freedom Day, as it honors the anniversary of the 13th Amendment.
Today also marks the launch of the “End It Movement”, a campaign birthed out of Passion 2013. 60,000 college students gave over 3 million dollars to end slavery at the beginning of this year. And now, these students, and thousands more, are going to shine a light on slavery for the next several months. I am no longer a college student, but I am joining them for this campaign. Will you join with me? If you’ve read my posts, and this issue bothers you, it’s time to do something. You can start small. We all can’t bust into brothels or prosecute traffickers. Some of us may never meet victims. Not all of us have wealth to be able to give towards rescues. You may never counsel a victim or teach them life skills. You may never travel overseas to work with organizations on the front lines. But, we can give them their voice back. We can advocate. We can change our purchasing habits. We can learn. We can share our knowledge with others. We can all do something.
I will give you practical steps to make a difference during the End it Campaign. The first step is to sign up. Go to The End it Movement Website and sign your name on the pledge. That’s the first step. Educate yourself, step outside your comfort zone, and God will use you. Let’s join forces together to put a stop to this atrocity, once and for all.