How about some thought on the issue. Maybe even some discussion. Is it ‘right’ when our teenage boys think there’s nothing ‘wrong’ with naked or half naked girls screen printed across their shirts?
One or two have recently shown up at our place. Our own kids have heard the drum but clearly the message hasn’t made it’s way through to the friends.
It’d be easy to write these young fellas off as ‘disrespectful’ or ‘rude’. But the reality is they’re great kids from good families and terrific friends.
The response to the challenge went something like this; “What’s wrong with it?” “It’s a shirt right? It’s just fashion. I didn’t put her there”. (Without wanting to sound harsh) Yes you did. You chose the shirt, bought the shirt, slipped it over your head and walked out of the house and (until that point in time) you hadn’t given it a second thought.
The saddest thing about a victim of fashion is the individual’s obliviousness; they just don’t get how tragic it is. In this case it’s a culture that ‘trends’ the sexualisation and objectification of women and girls, with little wonder that (in our young men) there’s a growing demand.
But worth considering is what part a globalised market place plays in meeting this demand and more importantly at what price?
It’s estimated that around 5 million sex tourists travel to Thailand each year. A great many of these are from Australia. Globally approximately 10 million children are subjected to various forms of sexual exploitation in the commercial sex industry; a further 2 million are added annually. In the Mekong sub-region of Southeast Asia approximately 30 percent of sex workers are between 12-17 years old (UNICEF 2009). In Cambodia around 40% of prostitutes are under 18.
Human trafficking, sexual exploitation and sex tourism are inextricably linked – the fusion of two worlds gone wrong; ours where young women are paraded as sexual lures and theirs where being poor and female means incredible vulnerability.
Hey I’m no fashion police but when I see another of those shirts; I’ll need to ‘gently’ say something. Why? Because nice young guys need to hear it, and beautiful young women right around the world deserve it. It might not change the world but it might help the next generation to look at it differently.
Check out the following Blog at Love 146; ’12 Hours with a Sex Tourist’