Monday, May 11, 2009

Girls on Our Streets

Check out this article by New York Times columnist Nicolas Kristof about the prostitution of teenage girls in the United States. Sex trafficking and sexual exploitation is a global problem affecting women and children from around the world, including Nicaragua. It is not uncommon to see young prostitutes on the streets of Managua or hear of girls abducted from rural areas into global prostitution rings.

On a global level, we know that today there are more slaves than at any other point in history, and a large portion of those are women, girls and boys sold into prostitution. The sex trade in the US alone is a multi-billion dollar industry, and little is being done to curb it.

Kristoff's column highlights an essential issue--that when middle class or wealthy girls go missing, it's national news, yet Black and Latina girls from the U.S. are routinely prostituted and the authorities turn a blind eye, or worse, abuse them.

Why it is that governments internationally are not doing more to stop human trade, slavery, and sexual exploitation? And why is it that we value the lives of white middle and upper class girls, but not the poor Black and Latina girls in our own countries, and not girls from "third world" countries?

Girls on Our Streets

One book I recommend that talks about human trafficking, the drug trade, organized crime, etc. and globalization: Illicit: How Smugglers, Traffickers, and Copycats are Hijacking the Global Economy by Moisis Naim

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