God and Human Trafficking
by guest author Julia Nance
23, 32, 40.3 million….these are all guesses and estimates of the number of people who are being trafficked at any given time. Regardless of the actual number, it’s an amount that is almost incomprehensible…Where is God in the midst of such a horrendous, overwhelming injustice?
Modern day slavery isn’t something we really think about, but it is the second most profitable illegal trade in the world, generating around $150 billion a year. To make these large numbers even more staggering, about $99 billion is made by the illegal sex trade industry.
A heartbreaking industry that leads to millions and millions of people being forced into sexual exploitation.
Human trafficking: “The unlawful act of transporting or coercing people in order to benefit from their work or service, typically in the form of forced labor or sexual exploitation.”
Human trafficking is a hateful and careless act that robs the victim of their freedom, their hope, and even their life. It violates their body, mind, and soul. Every person has the right to freedom and right to choose their path in life, but so many never get that chance. Worse yet, it often happens right under our noses.
Though it can (and does) happen as portrayed in movies with dramatic kidnappings and underground auctions, more often than not it starts in more unassuming ways, ways in which the victims themselves are unaware of.
Kidnapping for the purpose of trafficking happens, absolutely. But a fact that is just as scary, if not more, is that it happens with people you trust; even family. Oftentimes a trafficker will gain a victims trust before they ever make a move to exploit them.
They will even enter a friendship or romantic relationship with the victim to gain trust and extract information that will later be used to gaslight them and keep them emotionally bound to the abuser.
Possibly the hardest form of trafficking to wrap our minds around is familial trafficking, where a member of a family will exploit another member to gain money, drugs, housing, or anything of value. Familial trafficking is one of the most common forms of human trafficking.
Pornography is another large, and a rapidly growing catalyst that leads to the demand of sexual exploitation. Not only does it create a demand for more explicit content, it creates an unhealthy and distorted view of sex and intimacy. Studies have shown that the average age of exposure to pornographic content is just 11 years old.