One of the things I love about jet lag is that I, who am not naturally a morning person, wake up bright and early. Thus I found myself wide awake at...
June 20, 2014
It's NOT Normal!
September 19, 2014
I have a friend whose response to many situations in life is, "IT'S NORMAL"
It rains on the day you plan to go to the beach...it’s normal.
The bus is 20 minutes late...it's normal.
You burn the last batch of cookies...it's normal.
The taxi driver charges you double the going rate...it's normal.
Renewing your visa is a complicated and confusing process...it's normal.
But when it comes to women and children being sold for sex, there should never be anything normal about it. And yet here in Patong, that is exactly what is happening. The sight of women being sold for sex does not produce shock in many people who visit here.
There is a visible effort to normalize the sex industry. Not only are women available in the bars, sex shows are advertised to tourists alongside trips to Phi Phi island and city tours. Starbucks, Burger King and KFC share the same space as the Go-Go bars and strip clubs on Bangla Road. A 7/11 sits across the street from where women from the former Soviet Union dance in glass boxes!
I often see families with small children walking down Bangla Road, seemingly oblivious to the damage being done to their little hearts and minds.
It is so normal to expect sexual favors from the women who perform Thai massages that the disclaimer, "NO SEX here" must be posted in the window to differentiate between the legitimate shops and the shops where you can buy extra services.
All of these things work to normalize the sale of women’s bodies. It is an accepted social norm! But it is NOT NORMAL to purchase another human being! Womens' bodies are not commodities to be bought and sold like meat in the supermarket. We must resist this dehumanizing trend!
We must defend those who are margainalized and oppressed and model what should be the norm.
The human soul has still greater need of the ideal than of the real. It is by the real that we exist; it is by the ideal that we LIVE! Victor Hugo
For many women the reality is that in their world prostitution has been normalized. But we can never settle for that, we must hold on to a higher ideal. We must continue to advocate for a world where the norm is that every human being is valued and where it is completely UNACCEPTABLE for any person to be sold for sex! IT IS NOT NORMAL!