In a world that not only defends but also actively and ceaselessly encourages and manipulates the individual to strive for pleasure and happiness as some sort of sacred duty, it is not difficult to conceive how such a bleak view of reality is so readily accepted by so many. Heck, there are a slew of "reality" shows on television depicting people aspiring to make it big in the sex industry. The participants are mostly portrayed as savvy business people with great ideas and marketing plans. It's glamorous. It's mainstream. All the participants have one thing in common - they are all "rational" adults who have made a conscious decision to enter the industry of their own free will.
There is no denying that there are adults who, having seemingly nothing else to offer the world, make a conscious decision to put their bodies or other people's bodies on the sexual marketplace for profit. There is also no denying that, with a few exceptions, most of the businesses and trades these adults choose to enter are legal. Therefore, the sex industry is all consenting adults who are legally doing what they do of their own free will. Nothing wrong with that, is there? If you like it, you'll accept it. If you don't, you can easily ignore it.
In either case, you are not obliged to think too much about the topic and you are allowed to get back to the business of getting on your life.
If only life were that simple.
For many years I too held fairly liberal views about the sex industry; now, I realize it is depravity, pure and simple. Like those with more liberal views concerning sexuality and what adults are allowed to do with their own bodies, I refused to accept that the sex industry has a dark side. Of course I knew sex trafficking, child prostitution, and sex slavery existed, but I refused to group them with the legal and legitimate branches of the sex industry. Child pornography and sex slavery were anomalies committed by sick individuals and had nothing at all to do with the healthy, rational choices adults like me made when they desired a little sexual stimulation to break up the grayness of a drab week or ease the stress of a long day at work. Sex trafficking and the like were rare occurrences, I told myself. If they did happen, they were perpetrated by perverted people and they mostly happened in faraway places with horrible economies where people are forced to engage in such crimes because it is often their only way of securing their own survival.
Once again, if only life were that simple.
I could go on for hours about the sex trade and its inherent evils, but the main purpose of this post was to draw attention to the reality that "anomalies" like sex trafficking are far more pervasive than most people would like to believe; it is also happening much closer to home than most people would feel comfortable acknowledging.
Case and point, York Region, the place I currently call home, compromises of a collection of affluent commuter towns that sprawl out over the northern borders of Toronto. On the surface, it is a place of spacious homes, green lawns, playgrounds, and good schools. It is almost excruciatingly monotone in its suburban composition, but it is exactly the kind of environment most people are drawn to when they begin searching for a nice place to raise the kids.
It's also a nice place to run a sex trafficking and child prostitution racket:
Naturally, this has nothing at all to do with the legitimate sex industry. It's just an anomaly, I'm sure.