Posts Tagged ‘travel’

       Slavery exists even today; i know that that sounds like an inflammatory statement but it is true.  It is just not talked about in any kind of real, life changing way.  I read a book recently which opens up a whole new way of looking at the world.  It is rather frightening.  Slavery exists today in what is called, modern day slavery….human trafficking.  People are bought and sold all over the world…but, it is not a subject that has been addressed in the fullness that it needs to be; to face it and, attempt to overcome it.

        The book is called, A Crime So Monstrous; it was written by author Benjamin Skinner; published in 2008.  He has traveled to places around the globe to educate and inform the world of the human injustice that is perpetrated against those who are vulnerable, and can not fight back without help.  It is a moral call to action.  Once your eyes have been opened up to the extent of the evil that is human trafficking…you will never look at the world in the same way.  Children, women, men, young and old…it doesn’t matter…crimes against humanity should never be tolerated.

        So what is modern slavery-human trafficking?  It is the forced sale of human beings to be used and abused.  There are many forms of it…from sexual slavery, prostitution, forced labor, to forced child marriages and the list goes on.  There are very real networks that cross continents buying and selling humans against their will; it impacts well over 800,000 individuals a year.   Sometimes repeatedly; without concern for the well-being of those who are being transferred like a piece of property.  It is illegal, it is immoral and it doesn’t stop there…sometimes, in many cases it is multi-generational.  In those cases, debt forces multiple generations to work to pay off debts…doing hard labor, with little or no pay.  In conditions not suitable for proper human living conditions.  Often, violence is used to coerce people to do things against their will.  They do not get proper food, shelter, health care or healthy human interaction.  It is not right.  Many of the victims are the most vulnerable in society…the weak, the poor, the disabled, the homeless, and those who are without protectors.

        Do you think it doesn’t affect you?   What if it was happening in your town?  What if it was in your neighborhood?   What if one of your loved ones came up missing?   Missing family member…what if they have become one of the invisible slaves bought and sold for someone else’s gain and pleasure?  People who patronize the prostitutes on any street, in any country, around the world did you ever wonder if …are they doing it because they want to?  Or, are they being forced to perform as a prostitute because they are in fact, someone’s slave?  If you purchase their services…you could be part of the problem. How about people who purchase the servant to cook, or clean in their business or home, especially those  individuals not legally present in that country; are they working for them willingly, or have they been bought and paid for?  

         Our country, the United States of America, is involved in war.  Our military men and women have seen things in other countries that would shock you.  In some of those countries, when war breaks out…rape is used as a tool to destroy cultures and to break down the resistance of the opposing fighters.   Our military men and women have seen what happens to the women in those countries that have been warring with one another when they have gone in to establish some kind of peace-keeping.  Women and children, as well as men, are raped and used horribly.  Some of them never recover, physically or emotionally.   This is unacceptable behavior…no matter what country it takes place in.  These are issues to think about.  No-one is guaranteed safety from these predators.  http://www.humantrafficking.org/updates  This is a global issue.  It affects us all.  If you met one of these individuals in person… how you could be unaffected?  Yet most of us live our lives unaware of their plight.  Their stories of abuse would horrify you. 

         Many of the hotbeds in the modern day slavery networks, are on the news everyday…either they are points of travel destinations, or glamour spots that the rich and famous travel to and from…others are known for their sexual tourism…PLEASE STOP FEEDING THE MONEY MACHINE.   Someone’s “tourism” is someone else’s nightmare!!!   Do some research…don’t travel or support countries that are known for trading the services of human beings, illegally, for money.  Governmental leaders must take a stand and enforce those who would disregard the value of human lives by their inaction.  We must expect legal consequences and demand it from the authorities who can make a difference.

         Ben Skinner’s book, A Crime So Monstrous, touches on some of those people and their situations.  It breaks your heart.  And yet, you know that it is just a way of outlinning the scope of the problem.  You can find out more about the book here:  www.simonsays.com  It is also available as an e-book.  Take the time to educate yourself…read it; and, understand how this affects us all.  We need to stand up and demand that our leaders help to wage a war against those who would commit crimes against humanity in such a vile, and dehumanizing way.  Thank you to those who fight the fight against such inhumanity in our world.  

See possibly related story:  http://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/WireStory?id=6081857&page=1 or http://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/story?id=6121646


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       Breaking news on the mayor of Detroit; he disregarded instructions by the court to get prior authorization before leaving the state of Michigan (not to mention the country) when he recently traveled to Windsor, Canada.  The mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, said that he was traveling to Windsor to try to make a deal to save approximately 1,000 jobs in Detroit.  He was under court order to get prior permission for traveling…either for personal or professional reasons.  He chose to travel without that authorization.  He apologized to the judge, Ronald Giles, saying that no one respected the legal process, that he was in, more than him.  The mayor has admitted that he did in fact travel to Windsor and therefore violated the court order.  The judge ordered him jailed for violating his court order of getting prior authorization.  It is serious business when the mayor of a large metropolitan city chooses to operate outside of legal boundaries…as this case illustrates…a price has to be paid.  This case has had a large impact on it’s community’s ability to function with any degree of efficiency.  There is so much legal wrangling going on…how does any of the city’s business get addressed with any appropriate focus?  (more…)

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       A week ago we were all horrified to learn of a young 22 year old man who was stabbed to death while he slept on a greyhoud bus that was traveling through Canada.  This young man did nothing wrong and yet, he was vicously stabbed over and over again; and then, sorry for having to say this…was beheaded by his attacker.  The attacker, Vince Weiguang Li, then ate parts of the body.  That is a violation of mind, body and spirit and is hard to understand how someone could act so normal and be so unbalanced.

         As all of this was happening, the other bus occupants left the bus for their safety.  An officer reported seeing some of the horrifying actions of Vince Li.  He was arrested and has gone before a judge who asked him if he wanted a lawyer.  He supposedly shook his head and said, “Please Kill Me”.

          Killing him would be all too easy.  Yes, I am sure there are many who wish that to be his punnishment.  Even if that is the end result, it is not going to be that easy.  There will be a process for Li that takes time.  You don’t request death and it is done instantly through legal proceedings.  It is not going to be that easy for Li.  He will have a long time to relive the horror that he perpetrated.  Over and over again, he will be tortured by memories of what he did.  (more…)

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        A family from Israel made news over night by leaving their three year old at the airport.  Remember the old movie, Home Alone, where the parents are bustling around trying to catch an airplane with all of their children and belongings?  Well, this case seems to mimic the movie to a degree.

         The family was running behind trying to catch a plane to Paris for a vacation.  The parents and their five children were hustling, they made it…well, most of them anyway.   Eighteen pieces of luggage and four of the five children boarded with the parents; the fifth child was left behind without the parents realizing it.  She had to be full of fear.  A little over half of an hour into their flight they were informed by an airline employee that they left their three year old daughter at the Ben Gurion airport in Israel. 

         I can’t begin to imagine the terror of that.  Anytime i leave home for an extended period of time…i torture myself going over the thousands of things that i imagine that  have been forgotten!  Their daughter was found by a policeman; but, it was too late…the parents and siblings had left on the plane.

       The family reunited when an airline employee and the child took another plane to Paris.  No doubt that when they return the family members will be questioned about the incident…they could even face charges of neglect or abandonment. As long as it was an accident and not a purposeful child endangerment; hopefully, further trauma will be avoided by not pressing charges. Thank God the child is safe.  I would imagine that when they fly home they will have some sort of safety, buddy system procedure in place to prevent another terribly scary incident.

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         Did you ever notice after being gone from home for a while how good it feels to be back in your own spot?  No matter how much fun you have somewhere else; no matter how good it feels to go on vacation; or, to travel to see others that you’ve been missing; there is something very special about getting close to your own home.  It really is true, there is no place like home!

        Just entering your familiar stomping grounds feels good; the anticipation that you feel is measurable, almost like your blood pressure.  Unlocking that door and smelling the smells that are familiar to you or seeing what passes as normal on your walls, floors, or furniture; well, it just says welcome home…we’ve missed you!   The sights, sounds and smells of home….Ahhhhh….there is no place like home!  Put your feet up and just breathe it all in…you are home. 

         While you are doing that…remember those who are going through the trauma of the natural disasters that the world has been dealing with lately; tornados, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and say a prayer for them and their situation; give thanks to God above, for the blessings in your life, while you are at it. 

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        My children arrived safely from Atlanta for the Thanksgiving holiday.  They are going to be here several days to enjoy each other before everyone arrives for Thanksgiving dinner.  This is good.

         My son said…he almost didn’t get to come as (he owns his own business) he had alot of business to do during this week.  I am thankful for the high speed internet that allowed him to come and work out of my husband’s office here at home.  Otherwise it would have been another holiday without my son, daughter-in-law and grandson and granddaughter.  That just would not be a good thing.  We were supposed to go there for the holiday but finances just didn’t permit it, unfortunately .

         We can never get together as often as a Grandma would like.  The grandchildren have a bad habit of growing up in between visits :)! 

          Here is wishing safe travel for everyone during the holidays so that more good memories can be made.  The only downside is the crazy sicknesses that are going around.  Baby girl arrived with a bad cold and cough…kind of like the virus that keeps on giving…the one that my family here has been battling for the last couple of weeks!  Here is hoping that she is feeling better soon.  Happy Thanksgiving!

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      It seems that the last few months, it has been very hard to have our family members spread around the country.  Several family members have been having severe health problems that have required hospitalization.

      We are a close loving family and we are large.  The problem is when everyone lives so far apart it is impossible to “be there for each other” in a way that feels like you can actually help out. (more…)

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