Christmas morning and I am pretty comfortable at home. Warm, well-fed, and laughing. This is in stark contrast to many kids in the world. Pope Francis pointed out the plight of children in his Christmas address here:
“. . children displaced due to war and persecution, abused and taken advantage of before our very eyes and our complicit silence. . .so many men and women immersed in worldliness and indifference” – Pope Francis, 2014
On a related topic, its hard to grasp how bad things are in many places. The US State department helps us wrap our mind around what slavery looks like today here:
- Forced labor
- Sex trafficking
- Bonded labor
- Debt bondage with migrant labor
- Involuntary domestic servitude
- Forced child labor
- Child soldiers
Estimates vary, but an often-cited number of slaves is 27 million people. Many slaves are not even aware they are slaves because it’s all they know. It is their life.
People working in horrible and dangerous conditions without any choice. Sex and labor traffic rings generate more than an estimated $30 billion in revenues annually.
Thankfully, thoughtful people are bringing attention to this problem. Action being taken.
- TED talk by Lisa Kristine on the topic here viewed millions of times
- Pierre Omidyar and his wife donate $115 million to Humanity United to fight human trafficking, pledging another $50 million in the next 3 years here
- Street Grace, faith-based group that looks to prevent some of the root-causes (e.g., hunger, food insecurity) that drive kids into minor prostitution
Love the year-end holiday spirit of love, grace, community and thankfulness. Time to think about others, and take a step-away from selfishness. Good time to watch the TED talk on human slavery and what we can do to make more of a difference in 2015 here.