Like all the best advocates, they had the necessary points and stories to make it clear to me why demand had to be the driving advocacy objective.
First they shared with me the story of “Tami”:
Tami was kidnapped by a pimp, while walking home from school. He kept her captive for six months, raping, beating, and starving her. And selling her for sex with men every night. Tami thought she could escape her hell by telling the “Johns” that she was only a kid. And so every night, for six months, Tami told the men who purchased her, “I’m only 15. Can you please take me to a police station?” But not one buyer did. According to Tami, they ignored her pleas, forced her to perform sexual acts, and then returned her to the pimp because they had already “paid for her.”
And then there was the story of the girl who was burned to death. She had tried to run away from the control of her pimp/trafficker. To make an example of any girl who dares to escape, the pimp burned her alive on “the track” in front of the other girls under his control.
The girls said that as long as “Johns” could buy 14- and 15-year-olds without fear or consequence, more girls would be coerced into exploitation and trafficking — and tortured if they tried to escape.
Posts Tagged ‘john’
Let’s start with the prostitute: A previous survey of street prostitutes entering the Davidson County Jail found that 70 percent indicated that they had been victims of child sexual abuse and all were addicted to drugs. Many are introduced to drugs and prostitution by a male “protector.” Most have been on the street since they were teens.
Prostitutes who advertise through the Internet are more likely to be victims of sex trafficking and to be under 18. It is easier to traffic women and to sell underage girls through the anonymity of the Internet. Prostitutes are also victims of crime. Of the 544 women arrested for prostitution in 2009, 143 reported being victimized by forcible rapes, aggravated assault, simple assault, robberies, kidnapping and a reported homicide.
Additionally the “johns” can be victims of crime and exposed to sexually transmitted disease. Police have reported incidents where johns have been robbed or assaulted by prostitutes or their pimps. The incidents increase during sporting and entertainment events. Prostitution also brings in more drug dealing and has a negative impact on business development and entertainment venues.
Source: The Tennessean
Then, last fall, I interviewed a woman who runs a safe house in New York for foreign-born survivors of sex trafficking. Prayer was a significant theme of our conversation. And although her focus was on helping the women, I came away from our conversation strangely haunted by the perpetrators. Who prays for them? I wondered.
In the coming days, an idea crystallized, resulting in something I’m calling Pray for the Johns Day. The main day of prayer is Tuesday, February 14 (yes, Valentine’s Day). An additional day, Sunday, February 12, is an opportunity for churches to pray for the johns during corporate prayer. Although a “john” is literally someone who buys sex, the day is also meant to encompass men who pimp others, as well as those who contribute to sexual exploitation in more seemingly benign ways, such as porn consumption.
Praying for the Johns involves prayer that is two-fold: one, that johns would turn from their destructive, sinful ways (which is how the Bible views such actions: as sin); and two, that they would be transformed into men who could yet take up the good works for which they were made.
One former female pimp mistakenly believe that sexual violation against women is fact of life and can be used to benefit the women.
“I felt I was a good businesswoman to get paid and help my girls get paid for the same sh– that gets taken from you. It is a part of our society and what people want.”
– Youngbee Dale, “The truth about human trafficking, pimps, and johns”
Pimps said that while they had various tactics to recruit johns to their prostitutes, there was generally was no shortage of customers. One former pimp said that it seemed as if “johns were falling off the trees.
Youngbee Dale, “The truth about human trafficking, pimps, and johns”