Preventing Female Sexual Abuse and Trafficking

Via:  tig  •  4 months ago  •  3 comments

Preventing Female Sexual Abuse and Trafficking
Sexualization of preteen and young teen girls is particularly dangerous because they are children, not women.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

By:    Brian D. Johnson, Ph.D. and Laurie Berdahl, M.D.

Numerous models and minors who are aspirating models have brought allegations of sexual crimes  against photographers associated with clothing companies such as Victoria’s Secret. Parent company L Brand’s CEO Leslie Wexler had a close affiliation with convicted sex offender and accused sex trafficker, Jeffrey Epstein. We applaud the models who wrote to Victoria’s Secret seeking protective measures against abuses. 

No matter how girls or women dress or move their bodies, and regardless of their chosen occupation, they deserve respect and equality. However, the objectified, hyper-sexual poses and clothing required to model for companies like Victoria’s Secret actually perpetuate the very process that endangers models and all girls and women:  sexualization

The American Psychological Association’s  Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls  explained that this common phenomenon results in girls feeling valued only (or, we contend, mostly) based on their sexual appeal or behavior; (2) that their sexiness equates with a narrowly defined, unrealistic standard of physical  attractiveness ; (3) and that they are not people, but objects (things) to be evaluated and used by others for sexual purposes, thus being objectified; or (4)  sexuality  is imposed on them(forcing them to be sexual, such as by using authority or sex trafficking). 

Boys are less likely to grow up feeling valued by their sexual appeal, behavior, and unrealistic standard of physical attractiveness, but sexual abuse of boys is appallingly prevalent and thought to result from child sexualization.  One in six boys  will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old.

Sexualization of preteen and young teen girls is particularly dangerous because they are children, not women. Dehumanizing and objectifying girls endangers them by increasing societal acceptance of child sexual abuse,  pornography , and trafficking, and is linked to inequality, mental illness,  eating disorders , low  self-esteem , acceptance of violent treatment, and  substance abuse among other harms. Female objectification is detrimental for males too—valuing females by these superficial, unrealistic criteria impairs work relationships and romantic partnerships, and makes males more likely to commit sexual assault and harassment.  

Warning Signs That Sexualization Is Affecting Your Children 

It’s normal for preteens and adolescents to be insecure about their looks and spend quite a bit of time enhancing their physical appearance, but when it appears to be the most important thing to the exclusion of other activities and priorities, it’s a warning sign of sexualization. Often expressing concern about not fitting into narrow ideals (six-pack abs for boys, large breasts, long thin legs, and tiny waists for girls) is another warning sign.

Here are others: using pornography, speaking about women or men as body parts or in derogatory or stereotypical terms, accepting or preferring media highlighting assaulted or objectified women, succumbing to peer pressure to dress or act sexually, and for girls, expressing concern about looking sexy or having good enough bodies to attract a romantic partner, or wanting to buy sexualized toys, products, and clothing. 

To help prevent sexualization and protect your children from its serious harms, here are some suggestions:

  • Encourage kids to have full childhood experiences by avoiding sexualization as you describe what it means and its harms. 

  • Ask kids what they think about sexualized images in media like movies, e-games, music videos, and magazines: “What do you think about how she/he is dressed (or is posing or acting toward men/women)?” “Do you think she/he looks like that in real life (was imaged altered)?” “Who is sending that message and why (trying to sell things, showing they value women based on looks or sexiness)?” and then say what you think. But discourage judging people by their dressing style and poses—these choices don’t reflect personal character. Simply suggest they not pay  attention  to sexualized bodies and styles in media or real life. 

  • Help kids understand how sexualization harms them. Contrary to media messages, how “hot” or sexy girls are doesn’t matter compared to things that can give them real  happiness  and power, such as  confidence , self-respect, educational and other achievements, good relationships, and having fun. Help infuse self-esteem into girls, so they feel valuable as people just as they are. Suggest dressing for respect, comfort, and fun and praise them for doing it. 

  • Help boys and girls understand how idealized physical images harm their perception of important qualities for a potential partner (such as thinking that physical attractiveness is most important when close relationships matter most in the long run). Discuss how sexualized images increase aggressive behaviors against women and  gender inequality. 

  • Express outrage and boycott companies that use sexualized images of women and girls, and encourage girls to speak out too. A group of thirteen- to sixteen-year-old girls who protested Abercrombie & Fitch T-shirts printed with the objectifying slogan, “Who needs a brain when you have these?” successfully removed them from the market. 

Lastly, advocate for social emotional learning programs in schools and communities. Our volunteer nonprofit team’s new  PowerUp Girls for Life program  helps preteen girls fight sexualization and other threats to their well-being and success. Despite many strong, deleterious sexualizing influences on youth today, including those created by clothing companies,  parents  and mentors can help defeat them just by starting the conversation with their kids. 


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Heartland American
1  Heartland American    4 months ago

Last night I saw an hour long program on the sex trade and trafficking of girls in America and around the world.  It was very good.  Much more needs to be done tostop this.

Heartland American
2  Heartland American    4 months ago

“Director and activist Jaco Booyens touted President Trump's historic work in fighting sex trafficking and defended Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as "incredible people" who helped keep children safe.

Fox News host Mark Levin asked Booyens whether Trump did more to address the issue than other presidents, including former President Barack Obama. "No question," Booyens responded on "Life, Liberty, and Levin," airing Sunday.

Booyens said that despite all the criticism surrounding ICE, the agency has become a vital partner in combatting sex trafficking.

"These are incredible men and women that help us ... incredible people who actually go and keep America's children safe. This president has empowered them to do so," he told Levin.”  

Sex trafficking, especially of children, is a diabolical scourge that still affects the modern world, but the depth and scope of this evil are worse than you probably imagine, South African filmmaker and anti-trafficking activist Jaco Booyens told LevinTV host Mark Levin on Sunday night’s episode of Life, Liberty & Levin on Fox News.

Booyens recalled how his sister became a victim of sex trafficking when they were growing up in South Africa, which made the issue very personal for him. “I didn’t jump on a bandwagon by reading a book or a movement that I felt led to,” the filmmaker explained. “It was dire.”

Booyens’ sister — now  Ilonka Deaton — was trafficked through corporate South Africa over the course of six years, he explained. He added that while his sister eventually came home, “It was a long, very painful journey that seldom has that outcome.”

“What is the typical outcome?” Levin asked.

“Death. The average lifespan of a child that’s trafficked is seven years. Because with it comes addiction, physical abuse, emotional abuse; suicide rate is through the ceiling, because how do you get out?” Booyens explained.

Booyens’ film “ 8 Days ” tells the story of a teenager who is sex trafficked after sneaking out to a party.

Booyens said sex trafficking is a crime that “doesn’t ask if you are conservative or liberal” but is instead a sex addiction Hollywood and the internet fuel.

Someone doesn’t wake up in the morning saying I want to buy sex with a 12-year-old girl — oh and by the way she has to be a virgin,” Booyens said. “They start somewhere else.”

“It starts with a pornographic culture, soft porn,” the anti-sex trafficking activist added. “It’s the objectification of women, which we as a country have done a great job at completely objectifying women to sex objects and emasculating men.”

Booyens also told Levin that CNN and MSNBC had shown no interest in giving his work a public platform. “I say that not to point finger or blame,” he said. “That’s just a fact.”

Heartland American
3  Heartland American    4 months ago

...If these people are addicted to illegal drugs, child sex, sex slavery, pornography, and other nefarious ‘sinful’ activities ; then their justification for hating President Trump could be warranted but not valid, since he is targeting these illegal activities .

Rumors abound suggesting the costs for child sex slaves has increased over 1000% since President Trump took office. Now, the costs for illegal drugs are following with massive increases with less availability.

After the arrest of Jeffery Epstein , the renown child sex slave merchant, we have learned most of his clients were Democrats and Liberals . Most of these people were not blue-collar workers but the elite of the elites.

Just as Donald Trump builds the wall on the southern border to stop child sex trafficking, he ordered his DOJ to go after the wealthy involved in horrific illegal businesses . We have just learned 70% of the unaccompanied minors coming across our southern border are sold as sex slaves .

Democrats remain firm in demanding President Trump release these children . If we then connect the dots from Democrats to child sex slavery, there is truly a major “NEXUS!”

If child sex and illegal drugs are the motivating factors in the lives of Democrats , then understanding their hatred for President Trump is valid – but unacceptable for such nefarious reasons. Doesn’t this make them criminal accomplices to be prosecuted?

Moving toward resolutions for these people requires denying access to children and illegal drugs. Next, they must receive immediate professional medical care and treatment...


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