Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results. – Rita Mae Brown
You remember 8 Minutes, right? That awful A&E Network “reality” show whose utterly-ludicrous premise was that a cop-turned-preacher would trick sex workers into meeting with him by lying to them, pretending to be a client (you know, like cops do)? Then he only had eight minutes (he knew that was how long he had, ’cause he’s a hooker expert) to talk them out of their life of degradation before their pimps came busting through the door to shoot him or “traffick” him or something, and if the girl agreed he would “rescue” her and give her access to all kinds of nifty resources so she wouldn’t have to whore any more, and the pimp presumably would shake his fist and gnash his teeth while saying “Curses, foiled again!”, then skulk off to a mall or bus stop to abduct a brace of crying 13-year-old middle-class white girls. Of course, the truth was that Kevin Brown was the Pastor of Nobody, the sex workers were contacted ahead of time and agreed to be on the show, the “rescue” conversations were edited down to eight minutes, and the “pimps” either didn’t exist at all or were the sex workers’ husbands or friends waiting for them in the car, or else just some dude who happened to be in the parking lot at the time. And the “rescue resources” consisted of a couple of hundred bucks and the phone number of a social worker. Oh, and when that wasn’t enough to “rescue” a kitten, and the workers went back to work because the bills were due, the big brave hero cops were watching for their pics & phone numbers so they could immediately arrest them. Unfortunately for all involved, one of the women exploited by the show got in touch with my friend, the indomitable Mistress Matisse, who proceeded to stomp a big muddy hole in them and attracted so much negative publicity that the abomination was cancelled.
Now, one would think that given the high-profile failure of this monstrosity, AND the very public exposure of frauds like Somaly Mam and Chong Kim, AND the success of sex worker activists in causing other attempts to exploit real, living whores for entertainment value to belly-flop in spectacular fashion, AND the recent surge in mainstream media articles skeptical of the “sex trafficking” myth, that reporters would be wary of new tragedy porn masquerading as “sex trafficking” reality, or would at least temper their urge to publicly jizz all over themselves when thinking about the exciting fantasy of teen virgins in bondage, right? Nope:
…The Abolitionists gripped me from the start, giving me an inside look at O.U.R.’s (Operation Underground Railroad) child trafficker stings…Tim Ballard…founder of O.U.R and former employee of Homeland Security, leads his group of ex-spy/army/commandos…right into the thick of the child trafficking/sex trade world…He and his team spend weeks, sometimes months, buddying up to these traffickers, setting up deals to purchase kids, convincing them that they are dirty old guys who want to have sex with 14-year-old girls, and bartering/paying for as many girls as possible so that, when the traffickers arrive with their child-slaves, the bust can be as massive as possible…
“OK”, I hear you say, “but this reviewer is some clodhopper from Idaho (not to mention possessor of a liberal arts degree) who thinks Google is a word describing the eyes of a ‘pervert’ looking at a ‘child sex slave’. His opinion is ignorant and unintentionally hilarious, but ultimately unrepresentative of the zeitgeist.” Fair enough; surely urbane TV producers with big bucks to lose would do their research more diligently than Mr. Potato Head, yes?
The efforts of Tim Ballard…and his nonprofit Operation Underground Railroad team to combat child trafficking worldwide are being documented in The Abolitionists, a 10-episode hourlong documentary series being shopped by EveryWhere Studios…For 12 years, Ballard served as a U.S. Special Agent for the Department of Homeland Security, helping infiltrate and dismantle trafficking organizations that kidnapped children and forced them into sex and labor slavery. Frustrated by the red tape when chasing predators beyond U.S. borders, Ballard left his government job in 2013 to start O.U.R. Since then, he and his team of mostly volunteers — who call themselves the Abolitionists because of parallels to the movement to end slavery — have done missions with the cooperation of foreign governments and police departments in Haiti, Columbia, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Mexico and other locations. Ballard recently testified before Congress in support of pending sex trafficking legislation…The process started with a feature-length documentary, The Abolitionists, produced by FletChet Entertainment, which chronicled the launch of O.U.R. and its first two “jumps”…
Is it just me, or does the idea of a TV show about Heroes of the Homeland fighting to rescue The ChildrenTM from evil dark-skinned foreigners have a vaguely goose-steppy, repurposed-Vedic-symbol sort of feel to it? And since that’s the case, maybe this isn’t a case of “They Never Learn” after all, but rather one of opening the collective mouth for insertion of the master’s boot.