The New Year began with Pope Francis calling on everyone to join hands and end slavery once and for all:
All of us are called to be free, all are called to be sons and daughters, and each, according to his or her own responsibilities, is called to combat modern forms of enslavement. From every people, culture and religion, let us join our forces.
Why is the Pope so worried about a non-issue? Wasn’t slavery ended after the emancipation proclamation? Nope, slavery did not just up and disappear because of a single American civil war. Surprised…? In fact, it is getting worse. Much worse.
Time Magazine noted in 2011:
Despite more than a dozen international conventions banning slavery in the past 150 years, there are more slaves today than at any point in human history. Slaves are those forced to perform services for no pay beyond subsistence and for the profit of others who hold them through fraud and violence. While most are held in debt bondage in the poorest regions of South Asia, some are trafficked in the midst of thriving development.
There are more slaves than at any time in human history — 27 million.
Today’s slavery focuses on big profits and cheap lives. It is not about owning people like before, but about using them as completely disposable tools for making money.
Benjamin Skinner, who researches modern slavery, offers some chilling insights:
In an underground brothel in Bucharest, I was offered a young woman with the visible effect of Down syndrome. One of her arms was covered in slashes, where I can only assume she was trying to escape daily rape the only way she knew how. That young woman was offered to me in trade for a used car.
I knew that I could get that car for about 1,500 euros. While that may sound like a very low price for human life, consider that five hours from where I live in New York — a three-hour flight down to Port au Prince, Haiti, and an hour from the airport — I was able to negotiate for a 10-year-old girl for cleaning and cooking, permanent possession and sexual favors. What do you think the asking price was?
They asked for $100, and I talked them down to $50. Now to put that in context: Going back to the time when my abolitionist ancestors were on their soapbox, in 1850, you could buy a healthy grown male for the equivalent of about $40,000.
The worst offender of human slavery is India, according to Skinner who quotes the Global Slavery Index, containing more slaves thanany other country in the world. Despite this, America and much of the developed world is happy to benefit from the slavery while ignoring its victims, accepting India’s claims that poverty is the cause of this horror.
Skinner is quick to point out that Indian slavery is due primarily due to generational debt bondage, affecting kids whose grandparents made a bad decision, rather than simple poverty. The same kind of debt bondage that will soon afflict America, as even Bloomberg would be forced to admit:
Republicans and Democrats alike postponed a reckoning. They encouraged borrowing and ignored surging tuition, leaving loans to balloon to the size of mortgages, shocking even the system’s own architects.
“No one ever conceived this was a way to create a debtor class of former students, the indentured student,” said Tom Wolanin, who worked on federal higher education policy for 30 years.
You see, student loan debt cannot be discharged with bankruptcy. With more and more graduates underemployed, or even unemployed, the time required to pay off the debt really does approach a life-time, as observed in a few of the cases listed in studentdebtcrisis.org. Human trafficking and blatant slavery (as opposed to the less visible debt slavery) in America is also of concern.
Washington Blog warns that the rich would attempt to put us all in debt peonage. Indeed, inequality in America today is worse than experienced by slaves in colonial America, and is twice as bad as it had been in Rome. The irony is that after the emancipation proclamation, More Blacks Under Correctional Control today than In 1850 slaveholding America, more are In jail than In Apartheid South Africa.
Yet nobody seems to care anymore. There is no Abraham Lincoln, no Moses, no Gandhi, and no Martin Luther King Jnr. In this day and age of anti-heroes we have Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Warren Buffet. Many claims of charity are made, while wealth inequality and human slavery continue ever onward.
Most people do not even know about the enslavement of humanity, and most of those who do know simply do not care.
Original source: http://www.zerohedge.com