Thank you Seth. As someone with deep engagement for more than 25 years in the ministry nonprofit community the only organization I trust doing work in this sad world is The International Justice Mission.
The Faces of Sex Trafficking
While in Chiang
Mai, Thailand we went to the market for the first time. A few of us had
wanted to go there and we finally got our chance. It’s one of the most
busiest markets I have been to and you can walk for hours and never see
the same area. On one of the streets I noticed a boy playing a
traditional Thai instrument and was begging for money. As I kept
walking, I noticed more and more people in the middle of the street
begging for money. About every 50 yards was another child or adult. Some
had some physical disabilities and several looked to be blind and
possibly had their eyes burned out. It wasn’t until a few later I
started to realized that there was a high chance that some of these
people were victims of trafficking. I will never know for sure whether
they are or not, but trafficking is high in this area. You can only hope
that they are not trafficking victims.
Indeed this is quite disturbing, and it’s eerily similar to the equally disturbing problem of human trafficking. I think an important thing to keep in mind is that this does not happen only in Thailand, but in many countries worldwide (including the United States). I have lived in Thailand for several years now and have seen numerous news reports about people being trafficked in to work in various types of lucrative underground businesses. Although laws in Thailand should be put into practice (because such laws do exist) to eliminate or greatly reduce this problem, money often takes center stage and enforcement is sometimes overlooked. Corruption still plays a very big role in developing nations and as a result many victims pay a heavy price, while their exploiters become extremely wealthy and hold themselves “above the law” so to speak. More international joint efforts are needed.
What on earth are you talking about? Like most Christian missionary types, this is mostly about you, not about Thais – about whom you know absolutely nothing. In the photographs you reproduce *nobody* is “trafficked” (whatever that means ). But then again, why didn’t the photographer just talk to them? Memo to Christian missionaries in non-Christian countries : nobody gives a shit about you or your religion, and they don’t want to be saved by you. Thais, especially, can’t stand you and wish that you’d just go home and leave them alone. Trust me, that’s how 99% of them think.
Maybe it was a naive effort. But here’s something four years later: we didn’t give in to cynicism or the notion that the status quo should persist and that the best move was to do nothing.
Arlene, for one, is glad we kept looking for ways to make a difference:
And this week there are 16 more like her being given an alternative to selling themselves in the bars. Ultimately we help them get college educations and a job.
In Thailand we serve Emmi, who knows what it feels like to be trafficked and has committed her life to freeing others as she is now freed: http://www.lighthouseinaction.org/