Not For Sale
EQ: What is the history of child trafficking in the United States, and how effective have the current laws been in stopping this practice?
Child trafficking is disturbing. It is even more disturbing to know that the child trafficking business is making billions of dollars. More shocking than the huge consumption of money is that the trafficking of children all around in the United States especially California. Our home state. There have been cases in all fifty states in the United States. The victims are mostly young women who are brought from poor countries into the U.S. to become prostitutes or servants; slaves, with no pay. Child trafficking is happening because there are not enough government officials to stop such a grand and prosperous business. The laws here in the U.S. are not putting a halt to the child trafficking crime. Instead of slowing it down it is growing even more rapidly day by day.
Child trafficking has many forms. Young children are lured into prostitution, and child pornography is the largest business involving children in the US. It is considered child pornography and child prostitution when the minor is involved in sexually explicit conduct. Forced labor, slavery, and servitude go in the same category. All three actions have to do with forcing the victim to do actions they are not familiar with or simply not comfortable performing. The removal of organs, international adoption, trafficking for marriage, recruiting children as child soldiers, or recruiting for cults mostly happens in foreign countries, not so much in the US. Although it has not been seen as much in the US, it can be possible. There have been cases in San Diego, California, where bodies of young women with missing organs. Children are targeted into this industry because they are extremely vulnerable and innocent. Children do not understand the circumstances of accepting amazing offers from strangers who just deceit them in the end. According to Bergman “More than 10,000 men, women, and children in the United States are being forced to work as prostitutes, agricultural and sweatshop laborers, or restaurant and domestic workers” (Bergman). When children are finally in this business, they do not talk to anyone most of the time about their situation. Their situation being that they were lied to and now they are forced to do so-called jobs that they do not want to keep doing for the rest of their lives. According to Bergman “Often immigrants too terrified to reveal their plight - to beatings, threats, and other forms of abuse, both physical and psychological” (Bergman). The majority of the victims who come into the US to just begin their journey are immigrants. These immigrants come mostly from Europe, Africa, and Asia. These people come from very poor backgrounds and are uneducated. When someone offers them a better education, better food and clothing and a way to make money they easily accept.
Child Trafficking began a very long time ago. People became more aware of the trafficking of children in the 1700’s. Mainly in factories, and mines in Great Britain. Children were forced to work in these environments for long hours and for little pay. As one little boy recalls: "They [boys of eight years] used to get 3d [d is the abbreviation for pence] or 4d a day. Now a man's wages is divided into eight eighths; at eleven, two eighths; at thirteen, three eighths; at fifteen, four eighths; at twenty, a man's wagesÐ About 15s [shillings]" (“qtd in Wiki”). These environments were very dangerous for children. Many died or were severely injured. Factory owners would say that instead of giving orphans money, they would give them clothing, food, and shelter. Those were all lies. All children were treated very poorly. They were not given new clothes or a fresh piece of bread they were given cents for all the work they would do for a week. Children as young as six would work for 12- 14 hours with...
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