Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Craig's List: A Fallen Soldier

In recent months there has been a huge effort to remove Craigslist's Erotic Section as a major point of action in the fight against sexual slavery. It is apparent by this action that many people feel the removal of this section would decrease the opportunity for pimps to sell young girls and which equates to fewer girls being sold into sex slavery. The motive is noble but the action far reaching ramification of which few understand. While thousands of people were celebrating as they watched Craigslsit succumbed to a two year battle over the existence of this portion of their site, I hung my head in shame and cried for the innocent girls that got punished as a result. 

Have you ever been beaten for being on your monthly cycle or for loosing weight even though you are not being fed. Raped for not "enjoying"  the sex that you are forced to endure, kicked in the face for sleeping but denied the food, water, or even drugs to be able to stay awake? Now this sounds like completely irrational behavior, that hard for you to even comprehend. Sadly though this kind of behavior is used by pimps to control their victims and make a profit. Its extremely common for a pimp to get increasingly violent when their profits are at risk or the girls can't make their quota. So, if you think for one second young enslaved girls didn't get beat, raped, starved or locked in theirs cages the day Craiglist's Erotic section went down, I'm sorry to be the one to tell you but this actually increased the victims risk for more abuse.

It is also very true that some of my closest friends would not be here today, to laugh, love, or live free if it wasn't for being found on Craiglist's by the police department. Pimps were not only arrested from the surveillance of this page but because of IP addresses several of the johns were too. Which is virtually impossible to accomplish when caught on the streets Since a girl only serves (on most occasions) one john at a time, and I am absolutely positive they don't carry around a receipt book, take down names and addresses and then thank them for their business.  When a girl is caught with a john on the street the pimps usually get away, and she is only caught with one of her 20 johns from the day. When a girl is rescued from seeing her add on Craigslist, Backpage or any of the other hundreds of similar sites, the under aged girl is rescued and the pimps and many of the johns are put away. 
For the last few days I have seen every abolitionist and human trafficking organization that is fighting against sexual slavery post links and cheer for the nation wide sweep led by the FBI that resulted in the recovery of 69 child slaves, arrest of hundreds of johns and prostitutes, not to mention the 99 pimps put away. This was a step forward, a real reason to celebrate, but I believe the numbers could have been higher. If craigslist was available to use by  the Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch of the FBI that led the sweep.


Slavery needs to end, and I know we are the generation that is going to do it, but Craigslist is not the first step, and Backpage is most certainly not the second. Victimized young girls are going to be sold regardless of these sites,  and removal of the sites would put the girls back on the track which is far more dangerous.  Freedom fighters, abolitionists, law enforcement agencies, legislators and survivors have many steps to take toward solving this issue. It will not happen overnight but while we unite our efforts through education, rescue, and above all providing safety and healing, I say let the police do their job and arrest of these dangerous predators.
I'm proud to say that I have overcame this horror and have the greatest privilege to work along side these victims while they heal and grow. The honor to be their voice while theirs is lost, I am hoping my words hold some value in this chaotic war against slavery.  I have no idea how far this will go, how many people will see it, nor the impact it will have. This is just my feeble attempt to restore some of the damage done by the media explosion, unfortunately only the idiot pimps are dumb enough to use the Internet now and the real mastermind psychopaths have found newer more inconspicuous ways to get the job done. Thank you to all who have joined in the fight, lets work together with real solutions to shut down the industry that drives this horrific social ill.


Nikki Junker said...

alright... I see your point...but even sex workers that I have spoken to who use the internet and don't haver pimps work on sites like view craiglist as the lowest internet site that is used by pimps and not sex worker who "know what they are doing"... You know me though and you know I have a very open mind, but I still say what we did was right. Not only did it make it harder for pimps to traffic girls, but it raised serious questions with the american pub lic about sex trafficking... Great work though and I love having an opposing point of view on things always so thank you!!!! Let's hope we dont have to split abolitionist lines again (yuck) so we can work together to stop this stupid sex trafficking!!!!

cfpdx said...

Thanks for you post Amira. Shutting down Craigslist does nothing, and as you indicate - makes the situation much worse for sex workers and victims of human trafficking. Here's my post on the topic:

everything.beautiful said...

Hey Amira -
I got your name from Jeff w/ The Daughter Project. We have some things in common - unfortunately!! I'd love to chat with you sometime if you're up to it - your call :) Awesome to hear how well you are doing - makes me happy! You can check out my blog at Jeff also has my e-mail address (don't want to post it here). I work with the Daughter Project in a few areas - Education, web and wherever needed.
Anywho - I'd love to chat if you have time! Take care -

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