Monday, March 25, 2013

Issues that are too distatesteful to mention: slavery

The topic in this week's meditation class was sexual misconduct.  The teacher mentioned trafficking on her list, and rape.  I wanted to bring it home to our compassionate meditators and mentioned how the euphemism of "trafficking" takes away the impact of what it truly is, SLAVERY.  The sex slave market has exceeded the drug market at the Mexican border.  Having had a sex slave and her unwanted issue as patients while I worked in the Obstetrical Dept at the local hospital, I had done a study on the subject of modern day slavery. 

The NY Times did an extensive expose on it January 25, 2004, "The Girls Next Door" By PETER LANDESMAN
There are more slaves in the USA today than there ever have been in history.  And, should they become pregnant, their child will be sold into slavery as well.  The women are abducted off the street, especially in Oaxaca.  Girls from Europe think they are going to an au pair job in the USA.  They abduct runaways and children.  After their brutal indoctrination in Mexico,  San Diego High School boys are paid to drive them across the border into the USA where they are distributed to slave markets all over the nation.  This is one of those unpleasant stories that is distasteful for people to think about.  Like the Pope being a pedophile.  More than one Catholic priest is known to have kept a sex slave boy. 

And as far as rape, except for the time of Saint Patrick when a virgin could walk across Ireland without being molested, rape is less now than in the last couple of millenia.  I spent 5 years in India, and there wasn't one woman that I spoke to who had not been raped.  Every house servant in India can expect to be raped by the master or his sons.  What can she say? She needs the job.  And if she goes to the police, they will rape her.  And her doctor will rape her.  And her guru will rape her.  That's why girls are married as soon as they start menstruating because having been raped by whatever man had his way with her, now they want her child to be that of her husband.  The real news in India is that there are so many girls now that HAVEN'T been raped! 

Even when you read Isaac Balshevis-Singer, he describes the 19th c. Polish Catholic peasant society in which any man could have his way with any woman he wanted including his own daughter and his neighbor's daughter.  Girls grew up expecting to be raped.  Throughout the 1000 years of the "Middle Ages" aka the Dark Ages, when Catholics had a stranglehold on the entire culture, basically any thug or knight could have his way with any female he wanted.  And the king and his lord could certainly have whatever woman they wanted.  We are alarmed by rape, and we certainly should be alarmed!  But in an historical perspective, what makes it alarming is that thankfully it isn't so commonplace as it used to be. 

By the time all this spilled out of my mouth, the meditation teachers face was twisted in a tortured mask, and several people were crying.  I cry too.  But now I am taking action to foster in a new era of social and distributive justice. 

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