This trip invoked so many emotions and so many learning points that it’s hard to accumulate them into one post. What I can say is that my eyes were literally forced to open. I saw how widespread and encompassing the issue of sex trafficking is for many young women in San Diego. The fact that 14-15 is the average age to enter sex trafficking really shows that these young women are being targeted because they are vulnerable. These vulnerabilities are being sought after and exposed as these young women are subjected to sex trafficking.
I was moved to tears when I began to realize how systematic these issues are. Girls aren’t just being “snatched” off the street and brought into this world of human trafficking. Young girls with histories of sexual abuse, live in foster care, etc are being chosen. Therefore, women of color, poverty, LGBTQ+, etc are being chosen for this life. I really started to check my own misogynistic behavior after this trip and those I surround myself with, especially as a black male. The media and the music we listen to has really shaped us into internalizing subconscious misogynistic behavior and I began to realize this after trip. The way I interact with women and treat them has been shaped by what society has taught me and trips like this really opened my eyes and will help me spread awareness that literally 1 in 4 women have encountered sexual abuse. This is because men literally think that we have the freedom to belittle women and objectify them. I will be more conscious of this in the future and hopefully spread awareness to those around me.