In the early stages of establishing Slave Free Earth I was very hesitate to engage in areas outside of a narrow definition of “sex trafficking”. I thought it was important to stay focused on the goal of engaging victims of trafficking and didn’t want to get distracted by other aspects of the sex industry.
I WAS SO WRONG!
After several years of working in Patong, a city build for the sex industry, I have come to realize that trafficking is directly related to ALL aspects of the sex industry. The organizations who profit from sex trafficking also profit from pornography and prostitution. They cannot be separated. Sex trafficking, pornography and prostitution are all linked together to created a system that dehumanizes and exploits women and children. *
The porn industry and prostitution feed the beast of sex trafficking!
Pornography fuels the demand for new and different and younger women and children.
Prostitution lays the ground work that says it is necessary for men to have unlimited access to women’s bodies.
So I have come to realize that as someone who wants to see an end to sex trafficking, I must address other areas of the sex trade as well. They are intrinsically connected!
I cannot say that I am against sex trafficking and ignore the connection to porn. I must speak out!! Trafficked women are frequently used to make pornography and are often forced to watch porn as a way to “train” them in how to please men.
I cannot say that I am against sex trafficking and ignore the connection to prostitution. I must speak out!! All of humanity is diminished when we allow one group of people to be bought and sold night after night like any other product. This enforces the lie that women are objects and fuels the demand for more and varied products.
This is not to say I have lost my focus on helping women and children who have been trafficked and sold for sex. That is still my passion! We must end this deplorable practice! It is simply an acknowledgement that our anti-trafficking work must also encompass all aspects of the sex industry. A world free of sex trafficking must include a world free of pornography and prostitution.
*It should be noted that men are also at risk of being exploited in the sex trade and I in no way want to minimize their experience. However, the systems in place have a definite bias against women and largely target women and children.