(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
There are now more slaves on the planet than at any time in human history. True abolition will elude us until we admit the massive scope of the problem, attack it in all its forms, and empower slaves to help free themselves.
THONY BELIZAIRE/AFP/Getty Images
21st-century slaves: 300,000 children are in domestic bondage in Haiti.
Standing in New York City, you are five hours away from being able to negotiate the sale, in broad daylight, of a healthy boy or girl. He or she can be used for anything, though sex and domestic labor are most common. Before you go, let’s be clear on what you are buying. A slave is a human being forced to work through fraud or threat of violence for no pay beyond subsistence. Agreed? Good.
Most people imagine that slavery died in the 19th century. Since 1817, more than a dozen international conventions have been signed banning the slave trade. Yet, today there are more slaves than at any time in human history.
And if you’re going to buy one in five hours, you’d better get a move on. First, hail a taxi to JFK International Airport, and hop on a direct flight to Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The flight takes three hours. After landing at Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport, you will need 50 cents for the most common form of transport in Port-au-Prince, the tap-tap, a flatbed pickup retrofitted with benches and a canopy. Three quarters of the way up Route de Delmas, the capital’s main street, tap the roof and hop out. There, on a side street, you will find a group of men standing in front of Le Réseau (The Network) barbershop. As you approach, a man steps forward: “Are you looking to get a person?”
The Price of Life
Visit the site link above to listen, you will also find the following transcript there as well:
“A World Enslaved” author E. Benjamin Skinner recorded the following conversation inside a brothel in Bucharest, Romania. Listen as a pimp offers Skinner and his translator a handicapped, suicidal girl in exchange for a used car.
The audio is difficult to hear, but you can follow the rough transcript below as you listen to the recording.
Skinner: “Two thousand euros? I don’t understand, because you wouldn’t be making two thousand off her in two months. That seems high.”
Florin [the pimp]: “That’s not a lot. For one night, I make two hundred euros off her.”
Skinner: “Tell me a bit more about the girl. I want to know more about the product that I’m buying.”
Florin: “She’s very clean. A very nice girl-you won’t have any problems with her. Whatever you say, she will do. Anything you want.”
Skinner: “Two thousand seems like a lot.”
Florin: “No, for two months that’s very inexpensive! The girl is very nice, she is not doing drugs. She is good at what she is doing.”
Skinner: “How about something else? A trade. A motorcycle-I can see that being about the value.”
Florin: “A car, maybe. Not a motorcycle. A good car.”
Skinner: “A Dacia? But only if I’m buying the girl for three months. And the car will come with 50,000 kilometers.”
Skinner: “I’ve got to call around. Could I leave the country with her?”
Florin: “What if you leave me with my eyes in the sun? [a Gypsy expression for being stood up] I don’t know if you’d be back with her. I need a deposit. But I can get a Romanian passport for her.”