Does Our Society Promote Trafficking?

By society’s standards, sex is meaningless. At least that’s what many people will tell you. But we live in a world of “hookup culture” where sex seems to be on the forefront of everyone’s mind. It’s the first (and often the last) step in a lot of modern “relationships” and is obsessed over in our music, on our favorite television shows, and all over social media. Our society places high value on how many people you’ve slept with, and glorifies “player” and “pimp” as some of the highest achievements for a male. As a podcast I often listen to mentioned recently: Sex means nothing. But sex is everything.

Getting confused yet?

Our society has shifted, and not in a good way. We have set ourselves and future generations up to be entirely confused about who we are and what real relationships look like. We have set a precedent that cannot be obtained.. a standard that cannot be met. We can’t care about sex, but we are supposed to make our entire lives about sexually achieving more than the next person.

I don’t know about you, but by this point I’m just baffled. How can we be so fooled into the notion that sex is meaningless if it is promoted, accepted, and glorified all around us?

Aside from our poor, confused relational identities, this issue has a much deeper effect on our society. This divide between meaningless sex and a sex-obsessed culture is like gasoline to a fire when it comes to trafficking.

Let me explain.

A culture that is sex-obsessed creates lustful desire that often turns into demand for sexual exploitation (trafficking, porn, etc.). Coupled with that, a view that sex can be casual or mean nothing at all creates an illusion that there is nothing wrong with exploiting another person for sex.

Our society is in a downward spiral. Porn, hookup culture, sexual harassment, rape, sex trafficking… All these things feed into one another, and the decisions that our culture tends to promote only amplify the issue.

As I talk about this, though, I want you to know that this is in no means for the purpose of condemning anyone or the sin they may be struggling with. There are incredible stories of people tangled in the sin of this industry turning to chase after God, and I believe that can happen with each and every person who faces these issues. There is hope. But, hope requires action.

We cannot sit back and passively hope for a better future, for an end to trafficking, for the changing of hearts, or for our sin to go away. You cannot both be passive and have hope. There is no change without action. Not for our hearts, and certainly not for our culture. We are all called to action in different ways – going into the mission field, financially giving, supporting through prayer – but we are all called to action. And most importantly we are called to love. Our love for others should drive us to take action, so that we may have hope.

In order for us to hope for a better future and an end to trafficking, we have to stir up a movement of people who not only desire change, but demand it.

I’ll leave you with this:

A sweet friend of mine, Kaiti, who I got to know on our Germany trip said it this way. “Every brothel wall could fall down, but a thousand more could pop right back up if the culture doesn’t change.”

Our society and the things it promotes are inadvertently fueling the trafficking industry. We must actively hope for a change, and allow our love for others to stir a movement that declares this downward spiral unacceptable.


Abby Shrewsbury

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