Sex Trafficking hits the U.S. right under your nose

When one hears about sex trafficking, we think that sort of thing happens in faraway places such as Thailand, the Philippines or Russia. We shouldn’t…

Sex trafficking is growing in the US, and the cases are getting more outrageous while the statistics grow. (Shutterstock)

When one hears about sex trafficking, we think that sort of thing happens in faraway places such as Thailand, the Philippines or Russia. We shouldn’t want this human slavery to happen anywhere but it’s certainly a shock to learn that more and more children as young as 9-years-old are being sold for sexual pleasures right under our nose, so to speak.

Even the most hardened person cannot ignore the savagery associated with this type of growing human tragedy in the United States. Yet, sex trafficking in this country is rising, not lessening, and it occurs in the most unlikely places, such as south Texas and rural Virginia for example.

SEE ALSO: Are Colombia and Peru doing enough to combat human trafficking?

Children found in bondage in Texas and Virginia

I recently ran across an article from my hometown newspaper, the “San Patricio County News.” In it reporter Mackey Torres describes a recent incident of sex trafficking that is shocking at best. According to Torres, a south Texas ranch hand saw three young children, a boy and two girls, bound tightly together by a chain, being yanked and dragged by a man. The ranch hand fired a warning shot at the man, who fled leaving the children still chained together. The ranch hand who wasn’t fluent in Spanish tried to calm the children who were by now crying and probably thinking he was going to hurt them more than they had already experienced.

Lucky for those children, they were saved by a Good Samaritan who turned them in to a local church.

Cindy McCain attends a conference on sex trafficking.

Cindy McCain speaks about sex trafficking during a news conference, at Google’s Washington headquarters, January 8, 2015 in Washington, DC. Law enforcement efforts haven’t kept up with the growing rate of sex trafficking in the US. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

In New Kent County, Virginia according to the news forum, IJ Review, trucker Ken Kimmel earlier this month spotted an RV with black drapes drawn across its windows. While he waited to gas up, he noticed a man knocking on the RV door and minutes later the vehicle was rocking and rolling, it didn’t take much to figure what was going on inside.

A few minutes after the man stepped out of the RV, Kimmel saw a young girl’s distraught face as she took a glimpse out of the vehicle’s window. He thought of his daughters and the danger they too could face and immediately called police. An Iowa couple was arrested and federal charges were levied against them for sex trafficking. The rescued young woman showed signs of physical abuse such as nails hammered into her feet and a “hot key” pressed on her flesh — this apparently a signal that she was bought into the slave sex trade by the Iowan couple.

This entire incident is disturbing to say the least but even more disturbing is learning that something this horrific happened in one of oldest and most charming counties in America. English gentry founded New Kent in the 1600’s and its name is derived from Kent, England. It has some of the oldest roads in America dating back to the American Revolution, where its armies marched and later soldiers from the Civil War.

Sadly, criminals who persecute young women in ways we never thought we’d see in modern America now travel on these same roads.

Sex trafficking statistics in the U.S.

The sex trafficking statistics in this country are alarming. Approximately 300,00 children are at risk of being prostituted in the United States while a pimp can make as much as $150,000-$200,000 per child. This is an enormous amount of money for people who would otherwise be lucky to be employed at all.

Indeed, the money exchanging hands to buy and prostitute young boys and girls is lucrative, so this problem will only grow not lessen. Admittedly, laws have been passed to prosecute those found guilty of sex trafficking, but the children who are the victims are all too often ignored. Unfortunately, for the youngsters taken into sex trafficking their voices aren’t heard by our lawmakers. These children don’t vote and they certainly don’t have high priced lobbyists working on their behalf. So it’s up to us, the public at large, to rescue them and help them recover.

Thank God for the ranch hand in South Texas and the trucker in Virginia.

But it is of paramount importance to have a program/s in place that works to revalue these youngsters in their own mind. It can be done and must be done to salvage these terribly unfortunate young people. No one wants to imagine what that system of kidnapping, torture, verbal abuse and sexual abuse of a young person or an adult is like and that is one reason the trade flourishes. We must face and defeat this disease now, and by so doing law enforcement and our government will follow.

Recently, non-profit organizations have been sprouting up in key areas where sex trafficking is known to occur more often than in other U.S. locations. But there are many more that are needed to help these youngsters.

SEE ALSO: Sex for a few dollars? Children do it during the World Cup

Remember, “If you see something, say something.” This quote shouldn’t just apply to terrorist acts but also to everyday criminal acts and in the case of sex trafficked children; it’s a vital and necessary vigilance.