Just a Prostitute

I remember being at a convenience store in Houston Texas. I saw an older man who was very feminine with a much younger boy. The boy looked to be 16 years old if that. He also was very girlish, he looked high and his eyes seemed empty. He followed the older man around getting snacks that the older man pointed too. I thought “wow, the young guy looks like he could be his kid but something tells me it’s a sexual relationship, the way the older man is touching the younger boy.”Watching them gave me a sick feeling.

A few years back I was at the gas station here in town at around 2 in the afternoon. This gas station was located in a decent area. I was standing at the register waiting to pay for my gas behind a man that was at least 60 years old. When he approched the counter he bought two condoms. He then walked out to his car where a large transvestite “woman” was sitting in the passenger seat. He/she looked to be about 16 years old. They drove to the motel next to the gas station.

And then there is Laura. Laura died a few months back of AIDS. She was an alcoholic and a prostitute. Laura’s name on the streets had been “Trix”. She had lost several older kids to the state because of her life on the street but managed to keep her youngest daughter, Trina. Laura and Trina lived with a much older man that Trina called Daddy.

We first met Trina when she was 8. There had been a rumor that Laura was prostituting Trina out in the neighborhood.

If you saw Laura, Trina, the young feminine boy I met in the gas station in Houston, or the transvestite that was sitting in the passenger side of the car waiting for his john, how would you think of them?
They are all victims of the sex trafficking industry. ALL of them. A boy is taken, molested for years, accepts his life as a gay person and becomes the sex slave to an old man. An 8 year old girl is given by her mother to a man down the street in exchange for Crack, then she comes home to a “daddy” who gives her food, clothing and shelter in exchange for sex.

THIS is reality. We must start to see the victims of the sex industry for what they are. Daughters, brothers, sisters, mothers, they need to be rescued, restored not shunned and looked down on.
The huge Human Trafficking awareness campaign that has emerged recently needs to lead to more then Hollywood movies like Taken . It needs to be looked long and hard at by the church. We have the information, we have no excuse, we must act.

The first step is changing the way we look at people in the sex trade. Over the last three years God has changed my eyes. I see a lady walking down the Highway in the heavy prostitution area, and instead of thinking “oh, she’s just a prostitute” I stop and hand her a card that has a Human trafficking hot line number on it and information about a place she can go to to get help. I tell her we can help her and want to help her. Even if she NEVER takes the help offered to her. THAT does not negate my responsibility to her. We can never assume we know how she came to be walking the streets selling her body for money. She could be one of these statistics…

  • 14,500 – 17,500 – Number of foreign nationals trafficked into the United States every year.
  • 244,000 – Number of American children and youth estimated to be at risk of child sexual exploitation, including commercial sexual exploitation, in 2000.
  • 38,600 – Estimated number of an approximate 1.6 million runaway/thrown away youth at risk of sexual endangerment or exploitation in 1999.
  • 12-14 – Average age of entry into prostitution.
http://traffickinghope.org

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