08 October, 2008

Call and (no) Response

I am on a listserve and this came out this morning. Beyond believing the film has no bite (aka appropriate "responses") - there is another, more underlying, issue to be had. Hiowever if the movie could actually get people to admit that the policies of this administration and the ones being proposed by Biden and Obama will do little more than make it harder to prosecute those who traffick people in the US something good could be accomplished. We need to put pressure on our elected officials in the Senate to pass the TVPA Reauthorization as it passed in the House. For more info on how to do that - and even a script to use, go here.

The point is that trafficking in this country is becoming ok. There is a measure on the S.F. ballot in November to de-criminialize prostitution. To be blunt - the stories people tell of prostitution being a legitimate and "chosen" profession are completely false! It's interesting that those who would benefit most from it's "legitimization" (from the pimps, to the buyers, to the traffickers) are the ones pushing the hardest for it.

Prostition is the oldest, and I would say, the most harmful profession in the world. One based on fear, power, control, reducing women to pieces of meat, the pleasure of one off the pain of another, lies... there is nothing good about prostitution - and it's time we told our lawmakers to do something to stop it...


Please...check out its link to the trailer of the remarkable anti-trafficking "rockumentary" film, CALL + RESPONSE, that will begin playing in theaters around the country this week. The link.

For the moment, I almost wish I were not the conservative Republican that I am. Were it otherwise, I'd probably have greater credibility in calling on each of you to strongly urge the producers of the film to focus on Senator Biden's present (and I believe largely unknowing) role in undermining the anti-trafficking breakthrough that is now within reach. Every introducer of the film should be urged to cite the gap, noted by Nick Kristof and others, between Senator Biden's bill and Senator Obama's lofty and thus far unfulfilled rhetoric on the subject of trafficking -- and to cite the partnership between Senator Biden and the Bush Justice Department to undermine the historic, House-passed Wilberforce Act.

As a Republican, I've urged one and all to condemn the Bush administration Justice Department for its dreadful anti-trafficking policies, and hope that each of you will join me in ensuring that neither the Bush administration nor Senator Biden will be able to dodge or coopt the reform passions that the film will generate. If our coalition is to succeed, we can't allow political officials to gain credit or escape blame on the basis of mere lip service expressions of hostility to trafficking. Putting the heat on political officials whose policies fail to meet what's needed to truly rescue millions of enslaved trafficking victims can and will make all the difference.

Let's see if, in the remaining weeks before the election, we can use the film to help achieve that goal. If we do, I am confident that Senator Biden will instruct his staff to work out a satisfactory bill and believe that, the importance of other election issues notwithstanding, both Presidential candidates will be competing with each other to see who can best earn the praise of our broad coalition and the people who will be watching the film.