Against Sexual Slavery and Exploitation
The United Nations defines “sexual exploitation’ as any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. [i] The term “sexual abuse’ refers to the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature.[ii] Human trafficking is the third largest criminal enterprise in the world, just behind arms dealing and the drug trade.[iii] In many parts of the world, human sex trafficking and exploitation remains mostly unchecked, with authorities either complicit or lacking the resources to enforce existing law. Culturally, in many of these same places, women have long been devalued and subjugated. It’s no wonder nearly all of the victims of sexual slavery and exploitation are women and children. In fact, poor families have been known to ‘sell’ their children, as young as six years old, to traffickers, dooming them to a life of sexual slavery. In their book, Half the Sky, authors Sheryl Wu Dunn and Nicholas Kristof chronicle many stories of sexual oppression, and violence against women. They write, “An essential part of the brothel business model is to break the spirit of girls, through intimidation, rape, threats, and violence. We met a fifteen year old Thai girl, whose initiation consisted of being forced to eat dog droppings so as to shatter her self-esteem. Once a girl is broken and terrified, all hope of escape squeezed out of her, force may no longer be necessary to control her.”[iv] Citizen Sluts strongly condemn illicit sex trafficking. Every person has a right to make their own choices sexually, free of any kind of threat or coercion. We stand firmly for a cultural norm the world over that fosters personal freedom and applies the law aggressively against those who enslave or sexually exploit women and children.