When it Comes to Abuse, Trafficking, and Violence, Do We Have a Race and Gender Problem?

posted in: Child Abuse, Observations 0 |
Reading Time: 4 minutes

What I want to address, however, is how our society defines victim, and how it leaves far, far too many people behind. That article above is a great example. How many people, if asked about sex trafficking, picture little white girls or women abducted from Target? Probably a lot. For many, the only real information they’ve ever gotten about trafficking are warnings about Target or shopping mall parking lots from their Facebook friends. They don’t know how many teenage boys from broken homes, living in poverty, are pulled into being trafficked. How many gay youths, rejected by their families, fall victim to it. How many immigrant children here with no parental supervision, are sold off by the people who should be protecting them, into sexual slavery. 

Those stories, even if they’re told, are not going to grab national headlines. They are not going to evoke world-wide outrage and sympathy. Those are things that happen to “other people”. We might even be tempted to start looking for reason why it’s their own fault, or at least the parents fault, right? 

From a media perspective, we also have to keep this in mind. An abduction of a young white girl from her home, is a rare event. It’s actually newsworthy because it happens so rarely. When it happens, it’s shocking. A trans, minority, teen being coerced into selling themselves, with no one to turn to for protection, isn’t any of those things. A gay male teen being kicked out of their parents house and trying to make it through homelessness, is also not something that happens so rarely that there would be major news coverage of it. These things happen all of the time. So often, that they aren’t really news. 

So, which group should we have support and services for? I’d like to vote for ALL OF THEM. But that will take educating people about the reality of who gets abused, who gets trafficked, and for us all to accept that it happens everywhere. Until we get there, and are willing to see all different types of people as victims, we will continue to fail one group or another. That’s not acceptable. … Read More

What’s So Toxic About Positivity Anyway?

posted in: Observations 0 |
Reading Time: 3 minutes

This is really my biggest problem. Sometimes, sadness, grief, anger, and uncertainty are entirely appropriate, so why are we telling people to ignore those emotions?

Look at it this way, when we watched George Floyd’s death on video, we all felt something, and it probably wasn’t all that pleasant. Or, when we read the overwhelming number of deaths from COVID, we felt something. Maybe we all didn’t feel exactly the same thing, but we all felt something, and maybe most of all we felt a need to do something about it. If we had simply flipped the page and focused on what we are grateful for, we weren’t changing anything, we aren’t doing the things we need to do to keep ourselves safe and well. We are just ignoring it.… Read More

Child Abuse Advocacy Groups Caught up in Facebook QAnon Purge?

posted in: Newsworthy, Observations 0 |
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Am I sad that there are fewer child abuse advocacy groups on Facebook overall? Sure. But, what makes me sadder is how many legitimate advocacy groups fell massively short of their duty to tell the truth to their followers. How many continued to share these theories well after they were disproved in some bizarre effort to show how much more they cared about children, while diverting attention and resources from real victims and organizations trying to help them.

So no. I don’t feel sorry for you if your page was taken down by Facebook for violating their terms of service around spreading disinformation. You owed real survivors, and the people who followed you to learn more about true child abuse stories, more than that. You are right about one thing, child abuse and child trafficking is an incredibly important issue. Spreading lies doesn’t help that message, it provides the rest of the world an excuse to ignore it. If you truly want to advocate for children, stick to the truth, or suffer the consequences.… Read More

When People Show You Who They Really Are…

posted in: Observations 0 |
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Now, as many of you know, I’m not big on politics, and never really have been. I am pretty accepting of most political views, and don’t really find that many extreme political views, one way or the other, are useful at all. This year though, this one has gotten to me. There are definitely some folks who I’m not really going to go out of my way to stay in touch with, and really it’s not the politics of the pandemic as much as it’s the fact that these views exposed something else that makes it obvious that these may not be great friends.

It’s because these views are often expressed with so much selfishness.… Read More

The Extreme Things Toxic Positivity Forces You To Believe

posted in: Featured, Observations 0 |
Reading Time: 4 minutes

I feel fairly certain I have never read a worse example of how certain worldviews will have to end up blaming the victim for their own suffering than this quote from an article about how we can fetishize “surviving” during difficult times, often taking more interest in things like the Holocaust:

Recently, a textbook required for the UNC minicourse “21st Century Wellness” was skewered for suggesting—as a headline read—“Holocaust victims who died failed to find their inner strength.” The actual text included: “The people in the camps who did not tap into the strength that comes from their intrinsic worth succumbed to the brutality to which they were subjected.”

I realize that this seems shocking that anyone would believe this, but I have a different take on it. Why wouldn’t some people believe this?… Read More

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