We have known for a long time that America has been the place for a new start for many across borders. So many come for the American Dream, the chance to make a fresh start, start a business, a family, a new home. Now, that dream has been deffered for many-including americans. Xenophobia, Islamaphobia, Border Walls, Border Patrol and Immigration all conributing to the war on people seeking a life free of war, poverty, sexual violence and the list goes on. It’s always the most vunerable who get a taste of what american justice really looks like. Children in detention cells not understanding what they did to deserve the place they are in right now. Women forced into trafficking and domestic violence situations are lost, fearful of being deported back because the nightmare will not end there. What is everyone so afraid of? Jobs? C’mon. It’s a proven fact that most if not all americans would NEVER take a job that immigrants do and get paid the same wage as they do. In fact it is americans hiring them so they can pay them little for doing the jobs that they know full well other americans would not take. So that’s not an excuse. Crime. Ok well you don’t have to be an immigrant to commit a crime, look at the mass shootings in churches, movie theatres and malls, those were not immigrants. Most of the women that are being murdered in the United States are americans killed by their american husbands or boyfriends. On average more than three women are murdered in the United States by their husbands or boyfriends. Not immigrants.
For many years women have been under the radar when it comes to trafficking whether it’s labor or sex. Now they have the spotlight and the undivided attention of law makers who want them out, they’re criminals and don’t deserve to be here even though they fit the true definition of a trafficking victim. Anything illegal is viewed as a crime even if you are the victim. The so-called vetting process is tainted and one sided, for those of us who loved Melissa McCarthy as Spicer, you want to be Barbie not Moana if you want to live. Continue reading
We march in the streets together, we protest women’s human rights injustices together and we rally to change archaic laws against women together-so why can’t we collaborate? If we are to say that all women deserve equality, freedom and human rights does that include all colors, ethnicities, socio-economic classes and levels of academia or lack thereof? This is like the elephant in the room. We are a country that boasts freedom for all and a better than most record of women’s rights. But when we sit down to work on issues that affect all of us whether it’s equal pay, homelessness, domestic violence, human trafficking etc. we tend to never agree and begin to fight one another. Our guard goes up and the sexist phrase of “The claws come out” begin to dominate. What was supposed to be a level playing field has become a place of privilege and status.
As I have said in the past, I really love what I do. What I don’t love and it has been a problem, is having to reach out to other organizations to see if there is any way we can work together to give women and girls the best option for sustainble success. That is literally when “The claws come out.” It’s not neccessarily because they don’t want to help women and girls, it’s because collaboration to them means taking away their funding, programs, network and organization that they’ve worked so hard for. Well guess what? A LOT of us have worked very hard for we have too and we didn’t do it by taking away programs and funding from other organizations.
Most states across the country have committees, task forces and coalitions, places where individuals and organizations meet once a month to discuss their work, their needs and current legislation. This is usually capped off with “How can we work together to get this done?” Allow me to answer that for you. There is no “We” that will be doing anything. That job is for the lead organization that heads up the commitee, task force or coalition. It will be their name, their people and their influence despite the fact that other organizations worked just as hard, if not harder, only to be overshadowed by the lead competitive organization. No collaboration has taken place and sadly, it never will.
So many non profits are staffed with lawyers, business people and professionals that it would be an asset to others to be able to collaborate with them without pettiness and caddiness to better serve the targeted population of women and girls. There are many women who hold high positions with respected reputations, and they’ve worked hard for that. Unfortunately however, they seem to not feel that other women deserve the same. At least not in the United States. Countries like Africa have American business women running there to “Empower” African Women to start their own businesses and get themselves out of poverty regardless of their education or socio-economic status. They are are more than happy to work with African NGOs and governments to make it happen. No competitiveness happening there! It’s the celebrity status because it’s not about being just an “activist” it’s about being an International Human Rights Leader. And it’s not just Africa, it’s many other countries. What’s interesting about this is that if any one of these women from any of these countries were to come to the United States because of violence, trafficking, abuse, etc. those same women would not be so eager to help them. It’s not exciting anymore, it’s like helping a neighbor and who wants to read about that?
I am all for helping women and girls from all countries and that requires collaboration from those countries which is easy to find. But the competitiveness and capitalistic ideology of the United States supercedes the need for collaboration of resources, programs and assistance. Foreign born women are hidden as an organizations right to show that they are the only ones who work with immigrants and refugess so that the neccessary government funding only goes to them. But for how long can they sustain them? If only one organization were able to help all women from everywhere with ANY issue and give them the proper assistance and support there would be no need for any of us. Maybe this unknown super organization could erdicate things like domestic violence, human trafficking, exploitation and abuse. Women would be respected, treated equally and fairly, finally get the human rights we deserve. It’s a beautiful story-that is completely false. If we all have the same vision, or something close, of what we see as the future of women’s human rights, repect and equality then there’s only one thing that will make it come to life. COLLABORATION.
I love what I do-seriously, even though I maybe struggling financially at the moment I will always have a passion for helping women and girls all over the world who are suffering. Having said that, my work brings me to places of fear, desperation and uncertainty. It can be difficult and challenging when you are working with someone who isn’t legal and needs immediate assistance, coupled with being undocumented and your government just wants then out. My fear for these women is that ICE will break into their place of residence and drag them away kicking and screaming and there is nothing I or any other organization can do because we are now told immigrants are not welcome. There is little if any wiggle room to work with where we can make them feel some sense of security with the current administration. It’s impossible.
My question is, why does the White House have a human trafficking task force when a good portion of the women and men who are trafficked from other countries are at high risk of getting deported and there case never looked at? I guess first daughter Ivanka Trump thinks that only white women get trafficked. Well, here’s a fun fact, white women & girls account for a very small 1% of women in the US being trafficked. There rest are women & girls of color and foreign women, and that’s pretty much the way it is. To put a false image on the issue and not know what your doing at all is very dangerous. There are survivors of color and diferent ethnicities on the White House Task Force but sadly, they are not shown anymore or given a voice at all. Not only is it disillusioned, it’s fake news of the worst kind.
Whatever they’re doing in the White House when it comes to human trafficking, they should be talking about undocumented survivors and how they can be protected. Part of the issue is that when let’s say for example a raid happens. The women are taken into custody by the police as a criminal now with a criminal record in the US. This gets put in a database where homeland security & ICE are scrolling through to see who they need to deport as per executive orders by the president. Even though this survivor is getting services and is in a shelter, the second they step outside for anything, they are a target for ICE. Even though the lawyer assigned to their case is working on a T visa for them, it doesn’t matter. These stories are just as heartbreaking and enraging as when families are split or wrongfully deported.
The game has changed. We are no longer a country that provides sanctuary, no longer a place for dreams and a better life. Our government has basically said you are not welcome, you don’t belong here and you will never make America great. I still don’t understand how we got here but it does seem inevitable. We are not an old country that has been around for as long as the rest of the world. This country has now grown from a toddler to a narccisistic, spoiled, arrogant, materialistic, racist teenager that will never mature at this rate. No one wants to hang out with us anyore and have formed war cliques waiting for our downfall. Part of what makes this country great is diversity, culture and race. That’s exactly what made New York the Mecca of the US.
C’mon ‘Merica, when are you going to grow up?!
International Journalists & Correspondents do a really good job of reporting war, conflict and humanitarian crisis. But there is a separate issue within the chaos that claims lives, homes and the dignity of life. Women and girls, some too young to even know what it’s like to be close with the opposite sex are all of a sudden forced to be a women enslaved to male lust and perversion. These are the invisible stories that not many report on and if they do, it’s a one-liner no more. It’s not the fault of journalists but of society’s reluctance to look at the suffering of women and girls outside the famlial scope. There is a complacency that rape and enslavement of women is just a part of war, it’s somehow “natural” and “expected” just like the war itself and therefore cast aside as a side effect of living in a region that is raging in turmoil.
Women are the issue that unless you are an outspoken feminist, doesn’t get covered much if even at all. In the realm of terrorism and the groups that carry out these atrocities, claim the lives of women through coercion, false promises and brainwashing. Women are used as scapegoats and take the blame for terrorist activites and violence while they are under the control of a patriarcal madman. This is when women get A LOT of coverage. No one wants to see the bondage she is in, now this does not excuse the fact that something horrific happened and lives were lost, but the fact that this gets more attention than the thousands of women being raped, tortured and killed is not the right balance. Demonizing women at every turn will desensitize the masses to all of the abuse, exploitation, military sanctioned rape and murder of women.
That’s not to say that there aren’t female journalists out there going to refugee camps, places of extreme danger to reach these women and talk with them. Sitting in their homes or tents receiving their horror story so that the world will know. But this still doesn’t get much attention-unless you Google it. How will we ever understand the humanitarian atrocities of women and girls if it’s not in the world media the same way other disasters are? A country should be looked at by how they treat their women because with out us really, life cannot continue. Think about it.
Every single day we are inundated with Donald Trump and his government cohorts and goons. There is not a single moment that goes by that we are not being told of some obstruction of justice or cover-up concerning the current regime. I say regime because we are not living in a democracy anymore and I fear that we never will again. So far we have seen egregious executive orders targeting immigrants and minorities, a total annihilation of healthcare and women’s issues and discriminatory travel bans that are damaging the United States image all over the world.
And now, as if things couldn’t possibly get worse, it does. Ivanka Trump the daughter of the man who is destroying,well basically everything, is now tackling the issue of human trafficking. This is a woman who says that if a person perceives something to be true and it’s not, just let them believe it if it works in your favor. Really? So are we to perceive that you know everything that there is about human trafficking simply because you are appointed to a position, that you’re not getting paid for mind you, because it makes you look like you care and you want to “empower” women? Seriously? All you’ve shown us is “Daddy’s Girl” privilege and fake empathy towards women who are struggling. The blindness by Ivanka herself to her father’s misogyny towards women is mind boggling.
There is however one thing Ivanka is educated on, it’s grooming. When a young woman falls victim to trafficking by someone she loves and trusts she is ‘groomed” to do the will of her trafficker. In Ivanka case she has been groomed to make her father look like a progressive, smart, educated business man who wants nothing but to see women succeed. So she is paraded around, much like a victim, saying and doing everything she has been told while telling women she wants to empower them. Conversely when victims are paraded around they are told to make the men who buy them believe that they want to be doing this and they love it and it’s a way to make money. They NEVER see any of the money by the way, their trafficker takes all of it. Ivanka is not getting paid for ANYTHING she doing. Strange right?
If this “political coalition” they’ve put together for Ivanka is going to succeed, they need survivor voices. There must be an understanding of the current legislation on the issue and the needs of survivors. The only people who know what’s good for survivors ARE survivors. Building a coalition of people who have no clue about this issue and probably have never met a real survivor is extremely dangerous for women and girls that are caught up in this. Once again the Trump Regime has managed to undercut and destroy women’s basic human rights of humanity at it’s core.
Human trafficking is a $150 billion industry and it looks like the Trump Regime wants to keep it that way. Sad.