Victor Steinbok aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Apr 5 16:19:32 UTC 2010

Resurrecting one of the old topics, the following is from Change.org
(reproducing in full):

Who would have thought that a Twitter exchange between Demi Moore and
reality TV star Kim Kardashian this past week would have provided a
teachable moment on the subject of sex trafficking?

The exchange surrounded the word "pimp," which Kardashian used when she
linked to a photo of her and some girlfriends out on the town, and
labeled it "Big Pimpin'."

Moore, an advocate against sex slavery who recently donated $250,000
with her husband Ashton Kutcher to help the survivors of human
trafficking, responded:

"No disrespect. I love a girls night out but a pimp and pimping [refers
to] nothing more than a slave owner! If we want to end slavery we need
to stop glorifying the 'pimp' culture."

The result? A slew of celebrity tabloid headlines pitting Demi vs. Kim.

But as Changemaker Rachel Lloyd, founder of the anti-trafficking
organization GEMS writes on Change.org this week
the glaring omission from all the articles and commentary that resulted
from the exchange is any real analysis of Moore's point --- that we
glamorize and glorify pimp culture, use terminology that seems to
legitimize the practice, and in doing so ignore the fact that pimps are
modern-day slave-owners.

Of course, Ms. Kardashian didn't intend to glorify real pimps any more
than most people do when using the word as slang. But this slang
desensitizes us to the terrible reality of pimps and the sex trade, and
has a very real impact on the psychology of young girls most vulnerable
to sexual exploitation.

The median age of entry into the sex industry in America is between 12
and 14 years old. And partially because of the use of the word "pimp" to
glorify men in music videos and popular culture, many girls grow up
thinking of a pimp as someone who is cool, rich, and sexy, rather than
someone to be feared. Rather than as someone who might kidnap them. Or
rape them. Or beat them for failing to bring home enough money one night.

This is the awful reality of pimps, who sell more than 100,000 children
for sex in the United States each year.

It's unfortunate that it took a celebrity squabble to bring pimp culture
to the nation's attention. But now that it's arisen, let's take this
opportunity to have a real conversation about how to address a very real
issue. For more information on the dark reality of pimping, click here

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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