The Sexist

Human Trafficking and the Romantic Narrative


The Washington Area Women's Foundation points to this short video on human trafficking in the United States. One interesting thing to note is how these young women draw comparisons between their entrance into trafficking and cultural narratives surrounding heterosexual romance. "I just thought I was so madly in love with him, and he just made me feel safe. I didn't have a dad figure, so he became my dad. And I loved him, too," one girl says about a pimp; " I hadn't eaten that whole day . . . and if somebody offered me something to eat? Oh, they cared about me. And I thought, what greater way than a guy who can sweep me off my feet like Cinderella?"

  • Eo

    Im very wairy of femi-factoids, the person they used in the vid. is at least 50 years old.

    There are a lot of articles about womens groups and governments lieing to the public about trafficking and wildly exagerated figures being uesd to justify totalitarian crack down on volentary prostitution, criminalising it using scare tactics and stereotyping it by using extreme examples rather than doing the reasonable thing, normalising and regulating it so its not being controled by criminals and all involved and some safety net.

    I think the volentary sex trade between adults on craigs list is being targeted here, are we really supposed to believe that 100s of 1000s of children are being sold on craigs list? Well if we do we will support criminalising the volentary adult sex trade on craigs list wont we?

    Last year UK feminists managed to criminalise "johns" by using the same tactics, they claimed that 86% of prostitutes were trafficked and forced into prostitution, facts on the ground say otherwise.

    See here for details and mainstream articles on trafficking factoids and the lies that the UK feminist told the public to justify criminalising "johns" h ttp://

    Here is a very good well sourced article on sex trafficking myths
    h ttp://

  • Manor

    Did you know the DC area is something like the third biggest destination in the US for sex trafficking? And that many of the massage parlors active in this trade advertise in the City Paper? And WaPo? Now that would be a story. Look for the sports medicine massage ads where the places stay open till 3am.

  • noodlez



  • Carol Fenton

    Eo: The woman who runs the organization might be 50, but the girls are teens. The average age of entry into prostitution is 13, that means that there are girls who are younger who are being prostituted, trafficked, abused and raped in every city of the U.S. every single day. A valid study done by the University of Pennsylvania over 2 years is considered to be the best, and refers to the exploitation of domestic minors as an epidemic.

    Noodlez: It's never how the girls dress or what they do. The cause is always the person who commits the offense.

    Offenders are the buyers - the demand - and they are from every socio-economic background and neighborhood.
    Traffickers are often someone the victim trusts. This can be a parent, step-parent, friend, neighbor, boyfriend, pimp, or organized crime. Facilitators may or may not know that they are facilitating the crime - these are the internet sites, financial institutions, corrupt officials, hotels, and transportation companies.

    It's worth noting that a majority of traffickers and pimps are women, and women are purchasers and become addicted to pornography too. All of which fuels human trafficking, sex trafficking and the exploitation of children.

  • MuthaMitch

    I always love the volunteering to prostitute argument!

    Prostitute or Doctor?

    Prostitute or Lawyer?

    When we bring in that whole argument of "choice" we don't really look at what IT really is. Which is women's bodies on demand. And I find there are more stigmas against those that sell than those that buy. hmmm.

  • May

    Great post, Amanda. It's so important to talk about sex worker's dreams, aspirations and the self-protection mechanisms they develop for survival. In Thailand, I befriended a prostitute (young bar girl in Pattaya) who told me of a regular customer whom she loved. This guy was a Swiss sex-tourist (apparently young, good-looking) who treated her like crap (like ditching her on her bday night for another prostitute), while she felt highly attached to him, and hoped he would just take her to Switzerland with him where she would be his wife.
    At that time, I interpreted the whole story as a "well, she's a girl just like me, dreaming of love and prince-on-white-horse-coming-to-save-you." But now I see there are so many possible factors at play, like the Stockholm Syndrome... or perhaps the very concept of 'love', which varies from culture to culture.