As We Say Goodbye To 2019, We Ring In a Brand New Decade

Samantha Inesta
Human Rights Fellow
Founder/Director
BeaSister2aSister

As we close one decade we open a door to a new one filled with renewed hopes, dreams and promises. These past few years have been shown to be the most turbulent with the Trump presidency of 2016 that opened doors of racism, misogyny and violence. 2017 saw the first Women’s March to counteract the new administration that saw women as something that should be controlled and have decisions made for with no regard for a female opinion. The #MeT00, and #churchtoo movements grew calling out sexual predators in every sector, public demonstrations calling on men to stop raping women became commonplace on social media. Uprisings and protests littered the landscapes of most of the global world birthing growing pains for a new democracy.

Just in this year alone we have seen a much needed massive attack against the porn industry that has taken masculinity, relationships, marriages and lives away creating a public health crisis. Sex workers vs. trafficking survivors opened up the doors for a bill that will fully decriminalize prostitution giving the pimps and sex buyers full control while increasing victims and dis-empowering women who say it’s “work”. We are definitely on the cusp of the biggest paradigm shift this country has ever seen. The old order of subjugation, oppression and submissiveness has left the building. What we are seeing know is a rage that some might say is long overdue. Feminism is still being attacked as a man-hating ideology and not a movement of women’s human rights. There is still a lot to be done but we are making progress, more men are starting to speak out about the life altering problems of porn and the toxic masculinity it creates. Hopefully soon we will see the head of the octopus explode and people will see with new eyes and realize the destruction they inflicted on women and society by normalizing porn.

As hard as these issues can be to blog as well as work with women who have survived it, I am happy to be part of the conversation that will somehow lead to the solution for women and girls everywhere. This is truly a global issue and effects all facets of life, economy (personal & global), and social constructs. When you speak about war and conflict, there is trafficking, when you talk espionage or politics whether on the world stage or locally there is always rape, pedophilia and sometimes pornography. It is in the very fiber of every society around the world, this cannot be pushed aside as a “women’s issue”, it’s an every man, woman and child issue. There’s no more pushing it aside we must face it and do everything we can to change it as a civilization.

Social media has proven to be the main medium to fight these issues but not without push back and nasty attacks from cowards behind a screen most likely in a dark room. Even though I connect with those who are like minded, there’s always room for attacks. Journalism has always been a desire of mine and so I connect with journalists who have an international mindset, love what they do and it shows and always bring truth to power. I learn a lot from them and it has made me better at what I do, at least I think so anyway. And although I don’t know any of them personally I am grateful for who they are and how they show professionalism in the face of opposition. I write these blogs to not only draw attention to the issue of human trafficking but to show how it is connected to all that the world is going through in one form of another. It’s not a new concept, it’s an old issue that is just now getting the attention it deserves.

To those of you who have read my blog and liked what you read, thank you for taking the time it’s very much appreciated. I may not be the most popular kid in the neighborhood but that’s not what I’m striving for. I’m glad to have a seat at the table and express my views on humanitarian issues that are killing this world. My hope for this new decade of 2020 it that real change comes, women and girls lives are restored to their rightful place and every society learns to care for them instead of making them collateral damage. I hope that humanitarian crisis decrease and no more children are caged up with parents sick wondering where they are. I hope that dignity is given to the poor and marginalized and they are lifted up with everyone else. And most of all, I hope that violence against women, rape, sexual assault, trafficking and porn become illegal and a thing of the past. Let’s all hope together and bring in 2020 with sense of purpose and change.

Thanks for reading!! If you like this blog, please share it or subscribe to it.

Women And Revolution is a blog designed to raise the issues that are affecting women all over the world while giving it journalistic value. W.A.R is a division of BeaSister2aSister a 501(c)3 non profit that helps survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation and abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and become self sustainable. If you would like to learn more you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org or you can email us at info@beasister2asister.org. If you are interested in seeing women and girls everywhere break free from inter-dependency, please consider donating online as a one time or sustainable donor. We are committed to seeing every woman walk in total freedom.

BeaSister2aSister

“Being Accountable For Every Woman Around The Globe.”

A Country That Won’t Help It’s Own

Samantha Inesta
Human Rights Fellow
Founder/Director
BeaSister2aSister

Poverty is everywhere and has hit the United States pretty hard. Even though the rates have lowered, according to the US Census Bureau, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of Americans living in poverty. It is thought that as long as you have a job and you’re making some kind of money, you’re okay. This is a lie that most people have to face on a daily basis. A large majority of those receiving public assistance from the government are actually working, they’re just not getting paid enough to live, or take care or their families. Of the $3.7 trillion federal budget, only 10% of it is being used for safety net programs to help people who have lost jobs and suddenly find themselves on unemployment and unable to get another job right away-or at all. More of the budget goes into defense and security (about 16%) than it does to help Americans get on their feet again. Part of this is because society has bought into the myth that anyone receiving government benefits are lazy, refuse to work, have children so they can get more money or once they have benefits they stop looking for work. This lie is mostly used against people of color. But because there is such a stigma attached to it, once a person finds themselves in that situation, they are ashamed to ask for help because they don’t want to be categorized as such even though it is there for them. You’re made to feel like a criminal, a leech, a drain on society.

The US is definitely a country divided, not only by racism, misogyny and politics but by rich and poor. President Trump is threatening to take away public benefits like food stamps and cash assistance which means the poverty rate will jump to an all time high. For a president who calls people that need help lazy when all he ever did was help himself and his buddies is egocentric at best. This will affect women the most because they are the caregivers and single moms who are trying to provide a good life for themselves and their children. Women working two and three jobs are still lacking but try to make up for it with cash assistance and programs that help struggling mothers. Single women feel the sting as well, they are not provided with much help because it is thought that being single doesn’t require much. As if they don’t need rent money, money for food and medical care. It will be worse for women coming out of trafficking and domestic violence situations. It’s hard enough for them to find work due to their past but taking away something that will help them make a step in the right direction is unscrupulous. Putting these women in a poverty cycle and then demonizing them for taking part in what’s being offered is absurd. Employment is a big factor for these women to survive and overcome but if they have a low quality of life, finding a job will make it just as difficult.

With this type of standard of living the US cannot afford to be a capitalist state anymore, they will need to move to socialist reforms. Things like, food, housing, education and medical attention continue to become a privilege not a right for most people. How can one of the wealthiest countries in the world allow their citizens to be treated in this way? One reason is elitism has taken over as the new socioeconomic platform on which the rich are running on. They use gaslighting tactics on how great the economy is and businesses are hitting their financial goals at a record high and life is good. That picture turns gray when you mix the reality of the same businesses not paying their employees a living wage, housing is out of reach and education leads to mounds of student debt. Not to mention exorbitant doctors fees for visits and necessary medication. The circus that is our political sphere is overwrought by hard working people and their families wondering when they will be able to afford a home, get a better job and actually have a politician that will really help them and not pay lip service to appease higher earning constituents.

The European Union has a whole litany of political, social and economic rights that help their citizens improve their daily lives. Some EU countries make sure that their citizens are employed and and treated well. Businesses do not impose the “At-Will” clause in their employment contracts the way the US does, there is a little more security. For instance, in the US if you come in wearing a shirt your boss doesn’t like or your physical appearance isn’t pleasing he/she can terminate your position and they don’t have to tell you why. This is a huge contributor to poverty and lose of employment. All of this equal opportunity legal requirements doesn’t really mean anything.

This all ties into human rights and how this society and it’s citizens view what is given to some people and taken away from others with no form of explanation as to why or how they got to that point. The only way your rights are protected is if you have a documented illness or disability, if your a perfectly healthy human being willing to work it’s a problem. Everyone’s rights as someone who lives and works in the US should be protected no matter what physical or mental state you’re in. It’s human decency. To pull the rug out from under someone and then deny them access to benefits that will help them and their family is just cruel. The image of this country on the world stage is a picture of riches and prosperity but once the smoke clears that picture is a scene of desperate faces, hungry children and adults just trying to make it in one of the most riches countries in the world.

Thanks for reading!! If you like this blog, please share it or subscribe to it.

Women And Revolution is a blog designed to raise the issues that are affecting women all over the world while giving it journalistic value. W.A.R is a division of BeaSister2aSister a 501(c)3 non profit that helps survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation and abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and become self sustainable. If you would like to learn more you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org or you can email us at info@beasister2asister.org. If you are interested in seeing women and girls everywhere break free from inter-dependency, please consider donating online as a one time or sustainable donor. We are committed to seeing every woman walk in total freedom.

BeaSister2aSister

“Being Accountable For Every Woman Around The Globe.”

Job Hunting vs. Labor Trafficking

Samantha Inesta
Human Rights Fellow
Director/BeaSister2aSister

Millions of people all over the world are engaging in the job hunting market for various reasons. They may not be happy in their current position, they’re looking for more money or they are in desperate need of a job and haven’t found one yet. Whatever the case may be, looking for a job in today’s market coupled with fraudulent cyber imposters trying to get you to sign onto a position that doesn’t exist, can be risky business. But there is a more insidious plot happening here. Most fake job postings are usually by scammers who just want you to lose money. You know, the ones that automatically think you’re a perfect fit and it just happens to be a work from home position but you must purchase the equipment you need for your home office. The “company” will send you a check instructing you to cash it and buy the office essentials. After you’ve purchased what you need, lo and behold the check bounces and you are left paying for printers and computers you will never use and your potential boss is nowhere to be found. So now your out thousand of dollars and no job.

As horrible as that seems, that’s actually the lighter side of it. Within all of these charlatan recruiters, HR people and non-existent corporations there are also traffickers who are interwoven in the scheming process to find people they can exploit. Small to large scale recruitment agencies play a huge role in abusive recruitment practices that lead to trafficking in persons. There many deceptive mechanisms that are used when luring an unsuspecting job seeker. The job is not what was originally described, the pay is much lower and the hours longer etc. Forcing someone to sign a contract that binds them to the employer and creates a sort of debt bondage relationship. Individual brokers hired by these recruiters to facilitate the hiring process are also part of the deception offering people well paying jobs while the agency refuses to pay the broker fees. Most of these recruitment agencies will ask for exorbitant amount of money as their fee and will continue to charge more as the employment process moves forward. According a study done by the UNDOC low skilled workers are most vulnerable to these recruitment fees. They tend to pay a higher percentage of job-matching fees than higher skilled workers. Thus makes it harder for them to bargain for better wages and working conditions.

Summer or part time jobs are popular with teens looking to make some money over the break or to save money for a car or some other personal necessity. Help wanted ads posted on poles, trees, or billboards with little to no information trying to persuade people with just a very brief job description, a high salary and a phone number. These are linked to both forms of human trafficking, sex and labor. These jobs are looking to attract young people and adults to force them into trafficking rings with no real job opportunity in sight. These signs are everywhere all over the country and it’s not just foreign nationals responding to them, it’s US born citizens as well. Part of the reason for this problem is that the job market in the US has become so tight and at times unattainable that people have become desperate and are willing to do anything to be able to pay rent, a mortgage, food and outstanding student loans, hospital bills and credit card debt. Our capitalist society has caused some people to have a PTSD reaction to not becoming homeless and wanting to be able to take care of their children without the fear of being unemployed. This is a breeding ground for traffickers of all kinds. They are the ones that are really capitalizing off of this economy.

These scammers have also taken over online job search engines such as : Indeed, Ziprecruiter, Monster and even Linkedin. Once you put your profile out there a barrage of fake jobs and recruiters begin contacting you with positions that don’t even match your resume while telling you how perfect you are for the job. Techincal recruiters find your email and begin sending you job postings for high paying contract tech jobs. These positions are usually 6-12 months at a time. This can be very daunting for people who really need a job and have their time wasted by these imposters. Some recruiters will even go so far as to use a big name corporation to make you think they are legit. Fortunately some of the big companies will catch on and post on their website about these deceptive hiring practices but not all of them. It’s ultimately is up to the job seeker to be smart and know what they are looking at and do as much research as possible to make sure what they are applying to is real and legal.

Being employed in the US is becoming more of a privilege and not a right as with everything else. Even if you are not that privileged make sure your rights are not violated and your life isn’t at risk. Labor trafficking is a very real issue and it can ensnare anyone if they don’t know the signs. Before you look for that dream job, educate yourself on the nightmare you can have happen before you get there.

Thanks for reading!! If you like this blog, please share it or subscribe to it.

Women And Revolution is a blog designed to raise the issues that are affecting women all over the world while giving it journalistic value. W.A.R is a division of BeaSister2aSister a 501(c)3 non profit that helps survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation and abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and become self sustainable. If you would like to learn more you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org or you can email us at info@beasister2asister.org. If you are interested in seeing women and girls everywhere break free from inter-dependency, please consider donating online as a one time or sustainable donor. We are committed to seeing every woman walk in total freedom.

BeaSister2aSister

“Being Accountable For Every Woman Around The Globe.”

Social Media: The latest Enabler Of Human Trafficking

Samantha Inesta
Human Rights Fellow
Founder/Director
BeaSister2aSister

In the age of technology and being able to speak with people via video chat anywhere in the world, has made is a lot easier to also exploit people, especially children, anywhere in the world. Any site that allows you to post pictures, distort images or enhance them will most likely be used for some sort of sexual exploitation. The latest app to do this is Instagram. Now, just to be clear, social media apps have always been used as platforms for exploitation in one form or another. This doesn’t only apply to Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and YouTube have all in one form or another contributed to sex trafficking happening on the internet. Traffickers use Facebook to create profiles for young women with pornographic pictures, some so young they look like they’re in grade school. These pictures stay up without any accountability even when there is a outcry. Snapchat allows you to put all types of filters on photos to give them a look of fantasy for whatever they’re selling, and it’s usually children.

Instagram is used by everyone to document moments, vacations, businesses and life in general. But most people don’t see the darker things that it’s used for. Pimps will blatantly post pictures of underage girls and women shamelessly promoting their brand of pornography while selling the bodies of these women. The images are made to look like the girls in these pictures want to be there and their happy to comply with any position they are told to get into. This is social media prostitution wrapped in child exploitation and sexual assault. The most insidious thing about these accounts is that they try to attach themselves to unsuspecting accounts to either gain sex buyers or torment those who fight against sex trafficking and help the women who have survived it. It’s almost like they’re trying tell you that no matter what you do or how many laws are passed, we will still be here making money off of the bodies of women and girls. Social media sites needs to do much better to take down these accounts while putting up blockers that will not enable them to create profiles.

Pimps and traffickers are just as tech savvy as any high-level hacker. They will find any way to mask what they are doing until they get your personal information, account and profile then, they will launch assault of forced images of women, girls and children exploited and vulnerable. The cyber world has become the underbelly of the innocent online search engine. As the government cracks down on terrorism, domestic terrorism and hacking of elections, they should do the same for women and children who are being exploited. When doctored pornographic images of Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez went viral created by a racist and misogynistic group that were part of boarder patrol, it’s very telling that, one, they were automatically not taken down and two, not many people aside from Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and those close to her along with some feminists, were outraged. That’s a little upsetting. Whether you like her or not it shouldn’t matter. She’s a women who was sexually exploited, against her will, on social media. If society has a complacent or complicit view of something like this, then they won’t feel compelled to do anything about women and girls being exploited on social media.

If some are still struggling with calling labeling a child a “child prostitute” then how will we ever be able to stop sites like Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat from allowing their apps to be use by pimps, traffickers and sex buyers? There is still a shift that needs to be made and I believe it will happen, it may take time but things will change. We are already seeing strong, brave women and men speaking out against the destruction of pornography and what it does to minds of men and boys as well as relationships, marriages and families. The violence that is perpetuated by men from being normalized into it by the constant viewing of porn. With more and more women and girls telling their experiences of being choked, hit or worse they know it’s coming from their partners obsession with porn and his radicalized hatred of women by the industry. We need this type of outcry for the women and children who are continuously being exploited and sold on social media otherwise we are complicit and contributing to the public health crisis.

Thanks for reading!! If you like this blog, please share it or subscribe to it.

Women And Revolution is a blog designed to raise the issues that are affecting women all over the world while giving it journalistic value. W.A.R is a division of BeaSister2aSister a 501(c)3 non profit that helps survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation and abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and become self sustainable. If you would like to learn more you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org or you can email us at info@beasister2asister.org. If you are interested in seeing women and girls everywhere break free from inter-dependency, please consider donating online as a one time or sustainable donor. We are committed to seeing every woman walk in total freedom.

BeaSister2aSister

“Being Accountable For Every Woman Around The Globe.”

Man’s Weapon Against Women Is Always Rape

Samantha Inesta
Director, Human Rights Fellow
BeaSister2aSister

All throughout history we have seen women as always being used for collateral damage. In every situation where there is a struggle for masculinity or shame resulting from a loss of said masculinity by another male will almost always end up with a woman being sexually harassed, assaulted or raped. It has been used as a weapon of war for may decades and still holds up to that standard to this day. Some called it misogyny, some patriarchy but what it really does is continue to drive the point home that women are inferior, weak and therefore should be made an example of when it comes to a man being humiliated. It is, for all intents and purposes, a coward’s way out. There is nothing manly, strong or honorable about attacking women just to serve your rage at not winning, or coming out on top or even having your pride hurt. Women everywhere have become trophies, property, a commodity to be used, bought, sold and to settle disputes, all with our bodies.

In the early to mid 90’s Bosnian women were subjected to a systematic rape campaign by Serbian forces, and others, to instill fear and cause a genocide. Hundreds of Bosnian women were subjected to this because of the way men in the government felt. They were being forced to accept victim hood, their honor and pride where hurt making them look foolish, or to accept defeat. It is estimated that 12,000-50,000 women were raped during that period all because men were not getting along-basically. It’s also important to note that even at that time there was no UN Charter that accepted rape as a weapon of war during this genocidal rape campaign. It was not until very recently did this resolution get adopted, of course there were dissenting countries that refused to not let women be raped and stigmatized during times of war and conflict.

Of course not all of this behavior is relegated to war, as we can see this happens quite often, even on social media. We are living in a time where it is becoming more and more acceptable to attack women with rape, violence and derogatory names just so they can feel like a man. So really it should be no surprise that domestic violence, human trafficking and rape are more prevalent and they’re not going away anytime soon. There are layers to these types of issues as well. A woman is good enough to hold a good job but not good enough to lead a nation, show here journalistic talent, or even be recognized a breakthrough scientist or a prosecutor that gets justice. As soon as she steps into a male dominated arena she is immediately food for the lions. When we as women speak out against the injustices done to us because of who we are, we are met with more threats of assault, all sexual. Rape victims get re-traumatized on the stand and are basically called a whore for speaking out. What she was wearing, how she was walking and carrying herself takes the focus over what actually happened to her.

This brings me to my last point. Social media plays a huge part in why, how and when women get threatened sexually. With all of the differing opinions and taking of sides during this presidency, especially the impeachment hearing process, going after women is the comfortable norm for most men who like to hide behind their computer screen and spew expletives that they hope are instilling fear in the women their aimed at. Some of these sexual comments aren’t always aimed directly at the woman. Sometimes it’s another man they have the issue with and if they see they can’t get to him, the women close to him become the next target. In this instance they’re probably empty threats designed to anger and humiliate the other male but nevertheless this type of male feels very comfortable in his decision to use the verbage he chose. All sites claim to have mechanisms put in place that will detect this behavior and automatically get rid of it, but that rarely if ever happens. There is no cyber police that stops this kind of harassment the second it starts-not even ten minutes after.

This is a separate war women must fight along with all of the other day to day stereotypes, misconceptions and unattainable lives that come with how society dictates how we should be. But make no mistake, rape is and always will be a weapon of war for men whether it’s actual war, political and even social.

Thanks for reading!! If you like this blog, please share it or subscribe to it.

Women And Revolution is a blog designed to raise the issues that are affecting women all over the world while giving it journalistic value. W.A.R is a division of BeaSister2aSister a 501(c)3 non profit that helps survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation and abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and become self sustainable. If you would like to learn more you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org or you can email us at info@beasister2asister.org. If you are interested in seeing women and girls everywhere break free from inter-dependency, please consider donating online as a one time or sustainable donor. We are committed to seeing every woman walk in total freedom.

BeaSister2aSister

“Being Accountable For Every Woman Around The Globe.”