Everything Comes at a Cost

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
X-NONE
X-NONE

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:10.0pt;
font-family:”Times New Roman”,”serif”;}

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
X-NONE
X-NONE

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin-top:0in;
mso-para-margin-right:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt;
mso-para-margin-left:0in;
line-height:115%;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:”Calibri”,”sans-serif”;
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;
mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;}

“Look at the shirt you’re
wearing; find the tag. Maybe you bought it at Macy’s, or maybe the Gap -but
that shouldn’t matter too much. Where was it made? India; Vietnam; Cambodia;
China? If you answered yes, then chances are that some element of that shirt was
produced by the unpaid toil of another human being.  But it isn’t just
your shirt. Consider your cell phone. Microchips and other components found in
cell phones require numerous minerals for their production. These minerals
-found in remote areas of Southeast Asia and Africa -are most often extracted
from the ground using slave labor. And that’s only the beginning of the cell
phone supply chain. New slavery -a term coined by the director of Free the
Slaves, Kevin Bales -oppresses 27 million people in the world today (4).”

 

The above selection is from an
essay I wrote last semester titled “New Slavery: the State of Human
Trafficking in our World Today, and the Realistic Approach to Combating
it.” In my essay, I explore a few of the different industries that exploit
real people for financial gain. 200 years ago, a slave was an investment. They
cost about the equivalent of a tractor in today’s money, and therefore it was
in the best interest of the slave-owner to keep their slaves in good, working
health. Today, however, because of the exponential growth in world population,
a human being can be purchased for as little as $8 (note: that isn’t a typo).
This means, that it is no longer in the best interest of a slave-owner to keep
their slaves in good health, as the cost of upkeep is higher than the cost of
simply buying another one.

If you want to know more, my
organization, International Justice Mission is hosting a movie showing on
Wednesday the 26th of January (2 weeks from 2 days ago) at 8pm in the HUB movie
theater. The movie is a documentary called “At the End of Slavery”,
and you can watch the trailer for it here:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLcJg66pUWc

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Everything Comes at a Cost

  1. BETH MICHELLE RUDOY says:

    I had to comment when I saw the name Kevin Bales! I saw him speak at Pitt my senior year of high school and the way he emotionally impacted and shocked myself and the rest of the audience was incredible. I remember him talking about the horrific devaluing of human life and also a time when he went to Africa and was being nagged at to buy a little girl, just for $12. We think this institution of slavery has gone away, especially in the US, but he showed me that human trafficking/modern slavery is a huge problem in the US. The stories he told about women being brought over here being told they would be given a better life and then being locked in a basement doing forced labor was just so upsetting.
    I wish I could come to the movie but unfortunately I have class :( But I’ll try to be on the lookout for more events – I had a real interest in this topic in high school after seeing Bales speak. It would be awesome if your organization could bring him in! I know there is also a guy who is sort of his protege who came with him as well.

  2. MARLA T KORPAR says:

    Harry– Present-day slavery and the exploitation of human beings is an interesting topic that is often ignored by today’s society. Just by watching the trailer to “At the End of Slavery” I’m intrigued to learn more, starting with the viewing of the movie. Your cause reminded me of the genocide and wars presently occurring in Congo over the minerals used in cell phones. In Congo forced labor, torture, recruitment of child soldiers, extortion, and killings by armed groups to oppress and control civilians are all tactics being used to obtain mineral rights. The scary reality is in addition to all those issues, the main war tactic is committing acts of sexual violence against women and children. Congo is yet another example of how human rights and lives are being disrespected: minerals in the soil are considered “more valuable” than human lives. It’s frightening to know that such violent crimes are occurring all over the world without significant public awareness or recognition of the crimes being committed. It is important for the general populace to be educated on this topic and take a stand to stop the injustice. If you’re interested in learning more specifically about the troubles in Congo, check out this website http://www.enoughproject.org/publications/can-you-hear-congo-now-cell-phones-conflict-minerals-and-worst-sexual-violence-world. Enough is a national organization working towards goals similar to yours, beginning with bringing awareness to the public and holding cell phone companies accountable for the minerals they are purchasing. Your cause is noteworthy; good luck to you and your organization.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s