Friday, September 25, 2009

Prostitution profiteers silencing rescuers?

Here's a story that has newspaper and magazine publishers salivating.

A Salvation Army campaign against human trafficking that depicts prostitutes as slaves and victims of brutal violence isn't sitting well with some people here in Lotusland.

The Sally Ann recently launched a campaign called “Truth Isn’t Sexy” with graphic images of women being throttled or having their heads bashed against a sidewalk. The images can be seen around Metro Vancouver on billboards, in public washrooms and on transit shelters.

The Vancouver Sun recently published this article quoting a shill spokeswoman for a group called the Sex Industry Worker Safety Action Group, who claims the campaign is “misleading, debasing to women and nothing short of sensational.”

Hello? What is misleading or sensational about the notion that prostitution is debasing to women? However, vested interests would like us to think it's a viable career choice ... vested interests who profit from debased and demoralized women trapped in the lifestyle.

Of course, those interests would have us believe that most "sex trade workers" do it by choice. According to this article in Macleans magazine, a spokeswoman for another Vancouver-based "prostitution advocacy group" called FIRST said that that "sex trade workers have been hurt by the campaign" and wants the Salvation Army to "draw a greater distinction between victims of trafficking and those who choose to work in the sex trade."

Right. The Salvation Army does a terrible disservice to women by trying to prevent them from making a "career choice" in which they are very likely to end up in a "work" situation like this ... one highly doubtful that anyone would choose willingly.

You'd think that newspapers and magazines might actually run those Salvation Army ads for free as a public service. But on second thought, that's pretty naive. Business is bad for publishers these days. Very bad. Sex sells, and so does controversy ... so it would be out of the question to pass up the opportunity to publish articles containing both components. What could fit the bill better than pitting good people trying to rescue victimized women from the street against self-appointed "representatives" of prostitutes saying they object to the imagery ... and the notion that prostitution is not a desirable career choice for women?

Who has more to lose when women leave the streets, or stay away from them, than pimps and human traffickers... the ultimate capitalist exploiters?

So what are the chances they'd consider bankrolling a few "prostitution advocacy groups" and offering a nice incentive to a few well-spoken "sex trade workers" to be their spokeswomen?

I'd say fair to middling. Because, if you were a sex-trade worker, wouldn't you rather make money by talking to reporter than servicing a creepy john? And if you were a pimp or human trafficker, wouldn't you be willing to make that small investment to protect the revenues that provide your nice cushy lifestyle?

As for the newspapers and magazines, they probably can't afford to pay reporters enough danger pay to do serious investigative journalism into who runs these "prostitution advocacy groups."

So all we can do in the meantime is draw our own conclusions.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Justice at last - but just a drop in the ocean of pedophilia

Finally some justice for East European kids victimized by creepy "sex tourists" from North America.

A US customs agent, a single mother, managed to put away two predophiles who preyed on innocent children in Eastern Europe.

One of them liked "violent sex with virgins."

Well lah de dah. Great for the pr--k enjoying it. Not so great for the virgin whose whole life was destroyed in a matter of minutes by some scumbag getting his rocks off.

But the immediate self-gratification of guys with money seems to be a higher priority for a large segment of humanity than the dignity of women and children and the sanctity of their bodies. How else can you explain the dirtbag's wife pleading for leniency 'on behalf of their children"?

Good grief. If I found out I was married to a pedophile, he'd never see those kids again.

The reason pedophilia and human trafficking seem like such insurmountable issues is because so many prefer to look the other way than demand accountability from the perpetrators.

Thank God for those who do demand it.

That American customs agent is one tough cookie with amazing levels of determination, resolve and integrity. And that's just for starters.

She also showed a lot of class when she apologized to one of the victims on behalf of her country for the abuse she suffered. There are a helluva lot more apologies due from this part of the world... from both the perpetrators, and their enablers.

Let's hope this story is a harbinger of an avalanche of similar convictions.

Full story here.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Canadians trying to help combat AIDS in Ukraine

This article raises the question of how much money, not to mention human suffering, could be saved if "sex tourists" from other parts of the world stayed home, or at least kept their pants zipped up whenever they are near a woman in Ukraine.

Not that it's likely to happen, of course. Just saying.

Meanwhile, until that unlikely day, people who are more responsible and caring can only do what they can to help alleviate the suffering caused by the more primitive and less progressive humans among us.

Dr. James Blanchard, director of the University of Manitoba’s Centre for Global Public Health, and Wendy Schettler, head of public health programs with Winnipeg’s International Centre for Infectious Diseases, are in Ukraine this week to help develop a model HIV/AIDS prevention program there in partnership with UNICEF. ...

A 2008 report by the World Health Organization, UNICEF and UNAIDS estimated the number of people in Ukraine living with AIDS had more than doubled since 2001 to 440,000. ...

Ukraine’s HIV epidemic was originally linked to intravenous drug use, but increasingly the infections have been transmitted through heterosexual intercourse and from pregnant mothers to their children. For female sex workers, the prevalence of HIV is 10 times the general population.

Full article here.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Study on sexual exploitation of children in Canada

It is very encouraging to see government officials taking the issue of human trafficking and sexual exploitation seriously.

Here is a letter from a Manitoba MP who has an outstanding track record in working on progressive legislation:

Dear friends,

I would like to bring to your attention a study being undertaken by the Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights on the sexual exploitation of children in Canada. This study is currently scheduled to be completed by March 3, 2010.

If you or your organization would like to appear as a witness or make a submission, I would encourage you to contact the clerk of the committee, Adam Thompson. His contact information is as follows:

Phone: (613)990-6160
Fax: (613) 947-2104

Mailing Address:
Senate Committee on Human Rights
The Senate of Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada, K1A 0A4

Please note that witnesses will be chosen by the members of the committee’s steering committee. You can find a full list of committee members here.

I strongly believe that Canada must take significant steps to protect our children from exploitation and predators. This study is an excellent opportunity to make key policy recommendations that will result in better protection for our children.

Joy Smith, M.P.
Kildonan – St. Paul
Chair of the Standing Committee of Health

If you can take part in this study please consider making a contribution.