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It's Not Normal - "The Window-Shopper"

The Window-Shopper. In any business, you have the product, the customer, and the salesman. But there’s one other entity at play, often much broader than those. That last person is the window-shopper - the person who knows of the business but does not take part in it. In the business of trafficking, the “window-shopper” is us. It may sound like a bit of a stretch, but that’s essentially what we are. If you’re reading this, then you know the reality of sex trafficking in the U.S. and you are now an on-looker. But this forces each of us to ask the question, “What will I do?”  Let’s paint another picture for ourselves. Imagine you’re walking down a busy city street...

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It's Not Normal - "The Salesman"

The Salesman. In looking at trafficking as a business, the next role we need to discuss is the salesman - the pimp. For many of us, the thought of controlling, abusing, and exploiting someone in this way is unimaginable. But it’s obviously the norm for a pimp. Imagine a boy who grows up in a rough neighborhood in a home full of economic distress and instability. All this boy knows is disfunction and the struggle to survive. What he sees portrayed in culture is an image of success at any cost. For the salesman, illegal activity has most likely been a part of his upbringing from the beginning and greed is his primary drug of choice.  Now that we’ve painted...

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It's Not Normal - "The Customer"

The Customer. The next key player in the business of trafficking is the customer, otherwise known as the John. The “John” is the person who buys sex - the person who is so driven by his (or her) untamed desires that he no longer sees the humanity in the person from whom he receives his pleasure. He exemplifies the full extent of human selfishness. This is the role in the trafficking system that is very confusing to a lot of us. How could a man find it “normal” or okay to purchase sex from a young woman, let alone a child? But the reality is that if there are millions of girls being sold for sex, then that means there...

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It's Not Normal - "The Product"

The Product. Every business centers around a product that is being sold. It is that good or service that people seek out and others work to sell. When we look at human trafficking through the lens of business it becomes immediately clear that the product in this business isn’t just sex, it’s people. The problem is that the customers (the Johns) and the salesmen (the pimps) see these young women as a product rather than a human. But more than that, the issue is not just that the Johns and pimps find it normal to dehumanize people in this way, but that the girls themselves seem to have lost their humanity to the point that they find it normal to...

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It's Not Normal - "The Business"

The Business. “It’s not normal…” We realize that probably sounds like a strange title to an awareness campaign about an issue as heinous human trafficking. After all, if you’re reading this, then you’re probably at a place where you are dumbfounded that this issue even exists. However, the origin of the idea was quite logical. This idea spawned when one day we were discussing the root causes of trafficking and realized that for the people involved in this system, it is the norm. To most of us, the very thought of exploiting a person for personal gain, using a girl for pleasure, or allowing yourself to be sold is obviously not normal at all. However, to the people involved in...

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