Pedophiles on World Tour…

GlassesI want you to take a journey with me, it will be brief and it won’t cost you a penny. All you have to do is close your eyes and imagine.

Imagine: Picture yourself a child, in a poor country, from a poor family … you sleep on a mat on the floor, eat maybe once a day … there are too many mouths to feed … too many bodies in too small a space … chaos, filth, hunger, pain, despair – these are your daily companions … the family needs to reduce the number of hungry mouths or bring in extra money.

Your parents decide to take desperate action. They owe money and can’t feed the rest of the family. Older siblings who can find work do, but what to do with you, the young one?

Their desperate act? The act designed to help solve their financial troubles? They “sell” you to a flesh merchant who will keep you locked in a small, dirty room, fed enough to not starve. Your job? To “service” your clients. To sell your young body for the sexual pleasure of the adult men who pay high dollar for young flesh.

Your body suffers injuries from the sexual abuse. You are given drugs to dull the pain and to keep you quiet and compliant. This is the way you live for the next several years. Never having clothes except those that your “owner” puts on you in order to please a client. The only pleasures you have are those that come from the hands of clients – maybe they let you watch a little TV, maybe they give you a special treat. But always, always there is a price, and you pay it on your back.

Eventually, the conditions become too much. Your body, already frail, begins to shut down. Years of abuse and drugs take their toll. Your immune system is nonexistent. You get sick and are no longer able to provide for the clients so you are unceremoniously shoved onto the streets.

There, you have no choice but to continue in the only thing you know – peddling your flesh to feed your starving belly and clothe your naked body.

What will end this miserable life? What death will greet you? Perhaps an overdose, maybe an illness. Or something more violent?

When times are tough in our country, you get another job, seek public assistance, or any number of other things. In some countries, you sell a child into slavery – sexual slavery.

Girls
That’s not the only way that children fall into prostitution. No, sometimes they are kidnapped, sometimes they have run away and are coerced into it – but no matter how they got there, they are there – their bodies being sold for the sexual gratification of paying “customers”. The risks of disease and the ravages of drug addiction are high. There is no retirement plan, there are no health benefits, this is not a “job” – for these kids, this is their life, their only life.

And it’s disgusting.

When I began researching for this piece, I was stunned to discover this was still a problem. In my innocence, I had believed child prostitution to be an “old” problem, I believed it was history. How wrong I was.

There is a dark side to the tourism industry, it’s called sexual tourism – “clients” coming from other countries (about 25% from the US) in order to indulge in their pedophile tendencies and engage in sex with children, some younger than 10.

They go to Latin America, Asia and Africa, frequenting the poorer places, in search of those “professionals” whose services are for sale. These predators claim they shouldn’t be prosecuted because they are using the services of a “professional”, yet these are still children, servicing two, three or more “customers” a night and suffering lasting physical damage because of it.

This is nothing new and it has brought together seemingly opposing factions as Chuck Colson and Gloria Steinem joined forces in 2000 to support legislation against human trafficking. Back to the days of Victorian England, there are reports of child prostitution one of which caused the age of consent to be raised from 13 to 16.


In Asia alone, estimates are that over one million young boys and girls are engaged in prostitution.


Even with the legal loopholes slowly closing, increased arrests and prosecution of the offenders, it is still possible to purchase the “services” of a child. There are those who still do it, there are those who go out into this world seeking sexual gratification from the body of a child. That they are paying for “professional” services does not make it any less sick, it does not make it any less wrong.

Until recently, the US had a difficult time prosecuting these offenders because the law stated they had to travel with the “intent” of molesting children. The Protect Act of 2003 changed that and made the act itself the crime and increasing penalties, making arrest and prosecution easier.

The problem, the travesty exists and persists. The question, however, is this: What can be done to stop it? What can we do to curb the prostitution of young flesh?

There will always and forever be those sick individuals who seek sexual gratification from children. It’s disgusting, and to most people, completely unthinkable. But in order to fight this, we have to accept that there are those who desire it, will travel to obtain it, and will pay for it.

There are organizations out there fighting this practice. They are fighting for stricter laws, heavier penalties, better communication between countries – they are fighting for these children’s very lives.

The first step in making change is awareness. Now that you are aware, the question is, what are you going to do?


Normally, I fill this type of post with links right in the text, clickable as you read. This time, I chose to save them for last. I wanted to offer a resource – an all-in-one spot to obtain information on several groups who are taking action, and how to be a part of the solution.

For information on sexual tourism, child prostitution and the things being done to fight it, let your fingers do the walking. I was honestly disgusted by how prevalent child prostitution really is, and the wealth of information, while helpful, was disturbing. These sites include information on the problem, as well as ways to be part of the solution.

ECPAT International

World Vision

Fact Sheet 2005

US State Dept Info

Kid Shield

The Code at Responsible Travel

Doctors for Life

Unicef

Roxy Sig

BigFoto

4 Responses to “Pedophiles on World Tour…”

  1. tarynjade October 4, 2007 at 4:34 pm #

    This is a powerful, well organized, and more than anything, heart breaking story. Thank you for writing this and giving such great sources to find more information!

  2. Team Leader December 5, 2007 at 8:48 am #

    Who is the auther? Who wrote this piece? Maybe I could not look far enough for the credits? Because you bring a tear to my eye once again for this problem. The tear again is because I know very well of this problem resulting from some of the most desperate forms of poverty in South East Asian countries. Most especially Kampuchea (Cambodia).

    If the child prostitute were not there, would the pedophile be there? If the pedophile were not there, would the child prostitute be there?

    Most of your story is so very true and very real. I know, because I have seen it. It is so obvious in the more populated areas. After you spend enough time there, you can not hide from IT. IT will come searching for you. Searching for the cash pockets of the foreigners. And not only the western tourists, but also the Asian tourists from the modern Asian countries. Why? Because they know the tourist has cash to spend so much more then thier fellow countrymen.

    Can any laws stop the masses of the sex tourists? The sex tourist has no fear in thier persuits. He is a true predator. Opperating as if he were at the top of his food chain. I have seen them too often operate openly and freely. It takes law enforcement and the people to carry out the laws in the problem countries for a real change to begin to take place. The protect Act of 2003 has weak teeth and can not be trully effective on the mass of sex tourism. The sex tourist is able to fly into any third world poor country, feed his need and fly back to his jacuzzi and sports car in his home garage with out being cought. The protect Act enables procecution on sovereign US soil, but does it enable the needed arrests and charges to be filed at the time and place the offence is commited for things to begin? Does the Protect Act enable the needed enforcement to catch the pediphile in the act?

    To my fellow modern world (especially us culturally and economically spoiled North American) readers, can we do something to aid the children? Aid the innocent unprotected children? After having a total time of about 13 months and three trips across South East Asia, I consider to volunteer my time in some way. Can anyone recomend a few volunteer organizations working in South East Asian countries?

    Added note: The adult men do not pay a high dollar by thier economic standard at home. It is a high dollar in the economically deficient third world countries where child prostitution is common. My personal investigations found that a child prostitute in a South East Asian country will usually cost him a fraction of the price for a common street prostitute in mid North America. And how do I know this? My concern, (and sorrow) brings me to ask around.

  3. Roxy December 5, 2007 at 3:19 pm #

    Thanks for your comments. As to the author of the above piece – that would be me… I’m glad it touched you in some way.
    Check the links at the end of the story, particularly ECPAT International, there are ways to get involved, ways to help and this is truly one of those cases where each one of us may not be able to make a big impact, but our combined efforts – each little drop in the bucket – soon can and will change the world for the better.

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