Babylon Has Fallen

Samantha Inesta Human Rights Fellow/Founder/Executive Director BeaSister2aSister

This week has stunned, shocked and sickened so many of us. The disbelief that we have come to a state of complete anarchy, lawlessness and no fear of repercussions is straight out of the fascist regime handbook. Five people died. More and more images and videos being put up on social media by the minute show every nightmare scenario that we could’ve possibly imagined being played out right before our eyes. This is America. Friday night’s news media’s forecast put people over the edge when a graphic video was newly released to CNN of a Capitol police officer being crushed to death by a mob that was willing murder for a man who cares nothing for them. This officer was screaming in agony as blood started pouring from his mouth only to have one of the terrorists closest to him close the shield of his helmet as if to hide the crime scene.

What’s happened to this country? It’s years of white rage at the system they claim has taken away their freedoms as white people. These are people that still subscribe to the narrative that white is supreme and everyone else is a slave, they are the victims here. Now, I don’t normally write so much about other issues outside of trafficking and domestic violence but this is a human rights crisis that affects women and young women and I will explain. Every organized criminal organization whether they are terrorists, mafia (same thing as terrorists) or even cults, women play a central role. There is this perception that if you put a woman on the front lines people are less likely to take her seriously mostly because women aren’t usually the aggressors, we’re the nurturers. And as always women are the victims however, that may not be true in this scenario. Most of what we are witnessing is something that has been stirring inside of some people for years and they were just waiting for an outlet that will let them be who they really are-enter in President Trump. He opened up the door of freedom to be racist, misogynist and violent with no consequences whatsoever. That includes women and young women. Trumps way of speaking and posturing helped some women to see that it’s okay to be who you are even if it hurts others and if it does, that’s their problem they need to get over it. His words made them feel empowered, superior and right in their thinking as well as their mental instability. Never before have we seen so many white women who social media has dubbed “Karens” come out and attack African Americans and other people of color for simply walking in the park. It is only after they get exposed do they claim mental illness.

These women only after they have committed a crime scream victimization, but is it really? A victim is someone who was forced into a situation against their will not knowing the outcome and being blamed for it. This is not the case. These women and young women knew exactly what the plan was and still decided to go through with it because they were promised their place back on the food chain of white privilege. They knew the stakes, they made the decision not based on a consequence in their lives but from a deep rooted belief that they deserve better than all other women who are not of white, Waspy, Anglo, Nordic or Germanic descent. Their victim hood falls flat while Trump and his Republican followers cry crocodile tears in response. Their Stockholm Syndrome has come to an end and their journey of abandonment has just begun. These women just as many others, do unscrupulous acts just to please men, and the men are never pleased. But they will still seek their attention.

As the domestic terrorists continue to get rounded up and indicted these women will still pledge their allegiance to a man that is willing to let them rot in jail, as well as their male counterparts, while he continues to rage against states and the voting system as to how he was cheated and the election was stolen from him. These women are already in his rear view mirror. They fought for him, they were brazen enough to let their image be captured on camera and video, but somehow none of it was good enough, it will never be good enough because as much as Trump told them he loved them it will be proved a lie when they reach out for him and he’s gone. This is the problem when you worship man and count on his power to save you.

Over the coming days I’m sure there will be more disturbing and graphic content that has yet to be seen but we can only hope that this is the rock bottom we need to once again rebuild. Threats of more violence remind us there is more to come but after being ravaged by this outgoing president, the pandemic and the recent insurrection at the capitol, what more could be done? Babylon has already fallen, now let’s rebuild to be better. There may have been women who were part of violent attacks that killed and committed unspeakable acts of violence but there are many more that are ready to heal, move forward and get to the issues at hand and right now they are doing just that.

Thank you for reading!!! If you like this blog please share it & spread the word!! W.A.R. is part of BeaSister2aSister an 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to helping women and girls who are survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and come into a life of full independence and self sustainability. If you would like to contact us or make a donation to our work you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org & click the donate button. You call also send us an email at info@beasister2asister.org.

We so excited to share that we will be having a new podcast coming in 2021 on Anchor.com called Global Sisters where there will be discussions on human trafficking and the broader human rights issues that are affecting populations all over the world. We hope you tune in!

Why The Other Most Vulnerable Population May Not Get Vaccinated

Samantha Inesta/Human Rights Fellow/Founder/Executive Director BeaSister2aSister

The vaccines are here. Healthcare workers, essential workers, elderly and those who take care of them are among the first round of vaccinations. Early predictions have told us that we may be back to normal by Spring-Summer the latest, but that’s being proven to be not quite accurate. If we are lucky we may be on the road to repair by Fall? The holiday season? It’s anyone’s guess at this point but there are two sides of the isle. One side is cheering on this vaccine and calling it a pathway to recovery, destroying this virus and are more than willing to take it when it’s their turn in line. Then there is the other side who is skeptical, fearful or just plain defiant in as so much they believe it’s not real and this vaccine is more government control over their bodies and there lives. Groups that fall under the preexisting or vulnerable category are obviously part of, or should be, the first round. But there’s another vulnerable group that no one sees, they’re hidden-sometimes in plain sight. This is a group no huge media conglomerate will talk about. Some call them the “hidden” the “unseen”, they are the victims of a culture of rape, violence against women and a society that, despite the fact that we live in a free country, refuse to give women and girls a chance when they need it the most or real resources so that they do not find themselves in an inescapable situation. This vulnerable population are the victims of sex trafficking and domestic violence.

Just like PPE and other protections this vaccine will also be used to control, manipulate and ultimately put victims in a fatal position. Pimps and traffickers don’t want to be found out so getting the vaccine to the women they are enslaving will blow their operation wide open. You can believe this is a global problem since trafficking is a $150 billion dollar industry that spans across all countries and cultures. The fake debts that are put on these women to buy back their freedom is nothing compared to being exposed to STDS, unwanted pregnancies, beatings and now COVID. It is very easy for a pimp/trafficker to get vaccinated because who would know? They look like any man in the street. Just like brainwashed Trump supporters who will die for their country, male sex buyers are willing to die and take someone with them just to keep the sex trade alive for their own perverse pleasure. If this pandemic cannot stop the epidemic of the selling of women and girls, more unaccounted for deaths will continue to skyrocket. When data is put on the screen of percentages of people who have died versus those that were not accounted for probably doesn’t do justice for the underground population that governments, medical teams and scientists have forgotten or don’t care about.

The obvious other vulnerable and silenced population are the women in domestic violence relationships/marriages. There are intersectionalities between trafficking and domestic violence, although they are not the same, abusers use very similar tactics to oppress and hurt the women under their control. The most violent of domestic abuses are those that are tantamount to a P.O.W. where acts of physical torture and mental breakdowns are weapons for submission of their victim. This pandemic is a perfect weapon for abusers to strike unmitigated fear into the hearts of their familial partner. If these women are being threatened with homlessness if they go outside (without PPE because it’s being withheld from them) what will happen if they are told that they will never get the vaccine while their abuser is vaccinated and therefore holds the power. Why do we not have a task force for this? Why are we so desensitized to these women who are suffering? Is it because everyone is under so much stress and anxiety that nobody wants to focus on more negative news? This is misguided and inhumane.

Right now there are parents that have been looking for their daughter even before COVID came to town hoping that she’s not sick and she’s alive. There is a girlfriend, wife, life partner trying to figure a way out of an abusive situation that has left them wide open to being left out of the testing and vaccine cycle. If we do not recognize THIS vulnerable population it won’t only be the hospitals that are at full capacity-it will be the morgues.

Thank you for reading!!! If you like this blog please share it & spread the word!! W.A.R. is part of BeaSister2aSister an 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to helping women and girls who are survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and come into a life of full independence and self sustainability. If you would like to contact us or make a donation to our work you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org & click the donate button. You call also send us an email at info@beasister2asister.org.

We so excited to share that we will be having a new podcast coming in 2021 on Anchor.com called Global Sisters where there will be discussions on human trafficking and the broader human rights issues that are affecting populations all over the world. We hope you tune in!

Political Xenophobia And Human Suffering

Samantha Inesta Human Rights Fellow/Founder/Executive Director BeaSister2aSister

It is now official. Stimulus will only be $600 (if we’re lucky) and everyone’s future hangs in the balance forcing people and families to make hard and sometimes heart-breaking decisions. Christmas 2020 was definitely the biggest bah humbug and slap in the face no one was expecting. Now that this completely nightmarish year is coming to an end, we are all holding our breath hoping, praying, believing that 2021 holds the key to stopping this pandemic, fixing the economy and giving everyone their lives, family and friends back. But we don’t really know how that’s going to work out just yet. Right to the very last second this outgoing president is going to trigger every fear, every anxiety and depression that has consumed this country ever since March of this year. He knows nothing of the lengths of desperation that some people and family members will go to so that they don’t lose everything-just their humanity.

As we have seen in poorer countries (America is one of the richest & poorest countries at the same time) parents will do the unthinkable and sell a child (usually a daughter) to gain the finances needed so the family can eat and live. This could be a one time sale to a trafficker (apparently unbeknownst to the family) who will of course take their daughter with false promises and force her to work in a brothel where she will be forgotten by her family shamed and stigmatized. Attractive job opportunities in neighboring countries push parents to send them abroad with hopes she will send money back but then vanishes to their astonishment because backward cultural appropriation tells them it’s okay. Then there are the young mothers or single young women who are finding it hard to feed themselves, their children, find a stable job and a place to live. Women especially are put into these situations because their survival is dependent on a man and when they are alone they find it extremely difficult to sustain themselves when scarce work is always given to males because they are the more valued gender. It is through these consequences that they seek to make money fast and that decision isn’t easy to live with and not one they make lightly. Providing for themselves or their children by selling their bodies is not a feminist cry that sex work is work, it’s a suffering groan of a system that has abandoned them and cares nothing for their future while society continues to stigmatize them and claim superiority and privilege.

We must look at these situations and not dismiss them because they are in “other countries”, they’re right here in front of you and if things don’t get better more of these decisions will be made or made for women and girls who have always been collateral damage in any society. Let’s be real. Families are hurting-a lot. Domestic violence, child abuse & molestation has been on the rise ever since the beginning of quarantine and now people and families have been stressed to the breaking point of “what are we going to do?” If COVID didn’t stop abuse, sexual or otherwise, exploitation or sex trafficking then it won’t stop the distressing reality of a parent or individual victimizing or willingly selling their own bodies or someone else’s for financial gain. The profits gained from big pornography such as Pornhub and it’s affiliates consisting of rape & torture videos of women and children are enough to fund every city and state in this country, that’s what the second amendment has done. While some are patting themselves on the back for going after this latest form of human rights abuses, we will see more of this because even though we may have been able to “out” the biggest online internet traffickers, we may not be able to extinguish the darker more hidden enslavement.

What we know to be true is that an economy that only serves the interests of the rich is a broken one in the sense that the have nots portion of the haves will erode the social fabric in what’s left of a democratic society with a kill or be killed mentality. As we begin the new year next week we will still be in the waiting stage but we must be aware that whatever normalization starts to happen we cannot let desperation and bad choices destroy futures. Every woman and girl has potential, gifts and something so special to give to the world. Let’s not move forward with the pain of 2020 but of a mission that makes sure our women, girls and children have support, options and not a country who will throw them in the fire for political advancement or conspiracy theory insanity. 2021 can be our year if we allow it.

Thank you for reading!!! If you like this blog please share it & spread the word!! W.A.R. is part of BeaSister2aSister an 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to helping women and girls who are survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and come into a life of full independence and self sustainability. If you would like to contact us or make a donation to our work you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org & click the donate button. You call also send us an email at info@beasister2asister.org.

We so excited to share that we will be having a new podcast coming in 2021 on Anchor.com called Global Sisters where there will be discussions on human trafficking and the broader human rights issues that are affecting populations all over the world. We hope you tune in!

Lock Down #2 COVID & The Vaccine Timeline

Samantha Inesta Human Rights Fellow/Founder/Executive Director BeaSister2aSister

Here we are again. We knew this was going to happen and yet we are still unable to quite figure out why we’re going backwards. Just when we thought we would taste true freedom again-the door slams shut and mocks our attempts to escape. Everyone is going though their own anxieties in their own way. For some it’s not being able to see friends and family for holidays, hangouts and parties but still have all the comforts of a home, food and a job. For most others it’s having to put off Christmas, wondering how they will eat or where they will live or how their children will go to school and when will they work again. Everyone’s worries and anxieties are validated by by their own changes in situations and circumstances, even those that seem to whine and complain while others don’t have a fraction of what some do. I know that’s hard to hear but when you’re used to having everything and then you suddenly don’t you start to question, panic and horde because the fear of having nothing is greater than the fear of societal breakdown because of a pandemic.

But there are other fears and anxieties out there that seem to be hidden from the usual governmental rebellion. These are the hidden, forgotten and abused. These are the GBV (Gender Based Violence) and sex trafficking victims that have been on lock down since this thing started. When states issued the stay at home order rates of domestic violence skyrocketed with police stations and law enforcement all across the country receiving a record number of calls for help. Some got the resources that they needed but many others did not because trying to get to a phone or outside of their captivity meant their life-literally. The reality is much darker for sex trafficking victims who are on watch night and day while forced to continue knowing that at any point in time they can contract the virus. Sex buyers will patronize these women and girls with all types of STDs and viral infections, some will even be HIV positive so it’s not impossible that they will come in with COVID and spread it. There are no protections, no PPE no COVID tests, nothing just women and girls coerced and forced to be victims of trafficking and COVID.

The woman that is locked up with her abuser whether it’s her boyfriend or her husband and by the way they can also double as traffickers, has an ongoing nightmare scenario. She is his punching bag his domestic slave his sex toy and bullied victim all at once. She can be thrown out of the house for any reason with no PPE and told that if she gets sick she will not be let back in the home, even if her children are there. Her abuser will take care to wear a mask and protect himself but he cares nothing for her life. He will use the pandemic as another weapon to control her in order to “keep her in line”. Because there is a stay at home order the beatings can be non stop with no room to breathe and no one that will hear her pain. Being kept inside means no one sees the bruises, the blood or the abuse. His hands are always clean and sanitized and it’s not for the reasons you think. Is this too graphic? Yes. It’s supposed to be. People must see beyond what is in the news media and government. These are the issues that are buried, not in the top 5 headlining stories. This is the original pandemic that came to our shores decades before AIDS, N1H1, SARS, Ebola and COVID. This is a disease of society, cultural norms and the standing of women and girls in this country and after all these years no one even dared to make a vaccine for it.

We have now rounded the corner for a roll out of vaccines in the coming days. Pfixer and Moderna have diligently put together and are satisfied that the vaccine they have produced is good and will stop the spread. Astrazeneca and Johnson & Johnson are next in line. We all know the progress of how it will be decimated and nobody is disputing that but one has to wonder how victims of GBV and sex trafficking will get access to the vaccine. Will it be used against them, to control them to threaten them with early death if they don’t comply with the abuser/trafficker? How can we know that this most vulnerable group second to elderly and people with preexisting conditions will get vaccinated. How do we get them out of their situation first? Don’t try to find out if congress is deliberating this issue or putting it in the stimulus package or economic plan because you won’t find anything. Everyone deserves to have a stable home, food , a job as well as basic necessities like healthcare and education and a safe environment to live in. During these difficult and uncertain times where anxiety, anger and hopelessness has become a way of life the government must stand up and help the people-ALL the people, even the ones that are not seen.

We are living in a world that has turned upside down and for some of us that means every man or woman for themselves. Our government is preoccupied with petty divisions and satiating the appetites of the rich. But open your eyes and look deeper, check on the women in your neighborhood, even if you don’t really know them. The one time you introduce yourself and ask them if they need anything could be the time you save their life.

Thank you for reading!!! If you like this blog please share it & spread the word!! W.A.R. is part of BeaSister2aSister an 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to helping women and girls who are survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and come into a life of full independence and self sustainability. If you would like to contact us or make a donation to our work you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org & click the donate button. You call also send us an email at info@beasister2asister.org.

We so excited to share that we will be having a new podcast coming in 2021 on Anchor.com called Global Sisters where there will be discussions on human trafficking and the broader human rights issues that are affecting populations all over the world. We hope you tune in!

The Shelter System In the Time Of Covid

Samantha Inesta/HumanRights Fellow/Founder & Executive Director BeaSister2aSister

Housing has become an unnecessary human rights issue in recent months, so many are having to make the difficult decision to leave with just the clothes on their backs and what’s left of their dignity. Most have family they can live with until they can start again or friends who are willing to take them in but what about those who have nowhere to go and are forced into the streets. Lack of funding, bad house management and unscrupulous means are some the reasons survivors are finding themselves out in the street and homeless.

COVID has taken a toll on so many organizations and has changed how they work with survivors and which resources they can actually provide. But sometimes there are programs that cannot deliver on promises or even their mission statement. If you say that you have housing and call it transitional housing, it should be just that, not a shelter where participants are required to pay into it so that they are dependent on the program for food and clothing because the little money they are making (from a job acquired through the organization) is not enough to sustain them personally after they’ve paid the rent. This puts a huge strain on the organization to keep the housing going as well as the survivor who is only supposed to be there temporarily until they can “transition” to be on their own which unfortunately never really happens. If housing is not well funded or programmatically sustainable so that there can be a steady flow of women and girls coming in and transitioning out, it will have grave consequences like pushing survivors out into the streets, especially during a pandemic that has claimed the lives of well over two hundred thousand people.

Employment and housing are synonymous and you can’t have one without the other. COVID has put a strain on both and caused all the safeties put in place to crumble before our eyes as we rush to glue everything back together only to see it cracking at the seams. There is so much anxiety surrounding the need to keep a roof over our heads and having the means to pay for it, shouldn’t this right be freely given to a woman or young woman who is trying to take the steps to take her life back without having to suffer the ills of mismanagement or greed that has permeated the transitional housing and shelter system. Competition and inner circles are not going to make it any easier to find a place that will provide the right resources and stepping stones to a better future. We already have a shortage of beds so if you are not equipped to financially supporting a “home” don’t use survivors to support it for you. It’s not their job to pay your bills. That’s what donors and funders are for.

The only thing a survivor should be thinking about is getting back on track in her life, finding her path to sustainable and desirable employment that leads to steady housing. They are not your funders, housekeepers, babysitters or assistants they are women with a future and they need to be free to walk that journey to find the place they are destined to be.

Thank you for reading!!! If you like this blog please share it & spread the word!! W.A.R. is part of BeaSister2aSister an 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to helping women and girls who are survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse break the cycle of inter-dependency and come into a life of full independence and self sustainability. If you would like to contact us or make a donation to our work you can visit our website at http://www.beasister2asister.org & click the donate button. You call also send us an email at info@beasister2asister.org.

We so excited to share that we will be having a new podcast soon on Anchor.com called Global Sisters where there will be discussions on human trafficking and the broader human rights issues that are affecting populations all over the world. We hope you tune in!