Sitting at the airport in Hangzhou thinking about a few things.
First, how fortunate I am to be able to freely travel wherever I want FREELY (you’ll see why I emphasize that shortly)
This is my 8th flight since January 1. and I’ve literally been around the world.
Hong Kong to Hangzhou- Jan 2
Hangzhou to Osaka – Jan 16
Osaka to Seattle
Seattle to NYC
NYC to Ft Lauderdale
Miami to London Feb 7
London to Shanghai
Hangzhou to Hong Kong
Now about the sex trade… There have been 3 stories in the last couple of days. News stories bring awareness. I was sitting behind the old white guy and the Asian guy in pink shirt just now, waiting for my flight. The old white guy was speaking in English very disrespectfully to the young Asian guy. I suspect the young guy is more than likely a victim of the sex trade. What would you do if you saw this? BE HONEST and put yourself in my place. I’ll tell you what I did after I get some responses.
I’m interested in reading other peoples responses because I truly don’t know what I’d do…probably nothing because I’m a wimp.
I think we’re uncomfortable in general, with prying our noses in other’s business 😦
I’m not sure what I would do, you say there has been 3 stories in the press lately, maybe that old guy has read those articles and knows what he is doing is wrong. I have been to Asia many times and seen and been repulsed by the way these people prey on these boys, it’s horrible but I have never said anything. What I would like to do is to go up to the old bastard and tell him ( scream & shout) he is disgusting at what he is doing and the way he is speaking to the younger guy. I would want to get the other guy away from him and help him get back home to his family. What did you do Sandi?
I I’ll post what I did in about 18 hours after the readers in the States get a chance to respond.
I’ll add that they were boarding a flight to Kuala Lumpur.
I think I would have waited until the older guy left for toilet or something and gone to speak to the young lad, I would have asked him if he was Ok or if he needed some help. Beyond that I dont know, these young people are so scared, they’ve been promised better things and end up in this dreadful situation, I suspect many times they cannot go home as the traffickers would know where to look for them, to them they are just property, so if they left, they would lose money. Horrific I know. Thankfully there are alot of organisations that help. xoxo
As someone there temporarily myself, I fear I would be too afraid to say anything b/c of lack of resources. I don’t know the culture, and if the local police authorities would intervene. I like to think I would try to help him but, for the life of me right now, I am not sure what that entails.
Excellent point, MJ. Because the police speak a different language than ours.
Here is what I did. I walked up to the fat old pig and looked at him with disgust, said, “Your behavior is deplorable STOP!” OK, so I only did that in a brief meditation just now, not in person, but spirit knows no time/distance. Sandi this is a travesty. Being confronted with such glaring ghosts of the more gruesome side of human nature must be a challenge. It will be interesting to see your response.
I’ve had 3 funky things happen today and I can’t ain’t to share them with everyone. Will post in MY morning 🙂
Waiting for rest of story.
I’m not sure what I would do. If I were here, in the US, I’m more likely to call someone out on behavior. If I were overseas, though, and unfamiliar with culture, I may just bite my tongue.
Susan, that does seem like the safest thing to do.
Oh Sandi this breaks my heart. I too have been in Asia in some of the worst places for the sex trade. I have had times in Bangkok and Singapore airports where I have nearly screamed at the old white perverts. But as Susan said above, when overseas I am very cautious how big the waves I make are. It is frightening how that culture works!
Hi Brian! I saw this in Thailand, as well. It is sad and sick 😦 It is scary speaking up in a foreign country!
First of all, that flight schedule sounds grueling, so if I was tired from travel and jet-lagged I might not be so kind to the asshole abusing the guy, or I might be zoned out on my headphones and praying for a clean restroom.
I will be eager to hear what happened
I was content to be getting out of Hangzhou for 3 days 🙂 St coming up!
Here in Louisiana there hasn’t been much on that. There was a recent article on sexual slavery, but it wasn’t even front page news. Because of that and being a geeky guy, I’m not sure I have the awareness. I’m not even sure I would have noticed. I likely would have had my head buried in a suduku game or some such thing. If I had noticed, I’m not sure what I would have done.
I’m usually absorbed in an iBook or reading emails when idle, do I get that. It was something the man said and the way he said it that triggered something in me.
I agree with Susan… Being in a foreign country, I probably wouldn’t have said a word, but it would have depended on the circumstances. I can see going to the airport authorities, but who knows how communication would go. And… I’m sure they see this all the time and recognize it as what it is. Sad… But if it was here, I would have definitely said something, probably extremely inappropriate and offensive.
Communication can be a HUGE problem and could get YOU in trouble. Hell, even at work my personal assistant mistranslates things I say, then people don’t speak to me for a month, until I finally get to the bottom of it… Those stories for another day… Working on the post now.
If I was staying in an area where I’d seen this before, I guess I’d try finding agencies that could help, and maybe have the information on a card with me to hand out to someone who seemed to be a victim, if I could do it inconspicuously? Still awkward, I know, but the same idea as giving a woman you know to be a DV victim, the info on shelters or agencies or other resources to help her, if not then, then when she’s ready. I know there are human rights organizations in many of these places that can help, or so I’ve read. But I know it is very complicated.
Great idea! I do a lot of traveling for business and pleasure in southeast Asia… I was thinking of having biz cards with my blog info on them, maybe I’ll do the same for Aid associations.
I don’t know what I would do if I found myself in that situation. If I could speak to the young person alone I would ask them if they needed help, and then take it from there. I’m curious to read what you did!
Hi Carla… It’s a chance moment and you have to make a snap decision, I’m happy with the one I made 🙂
As casually as a woman with a mission can, strike up a conversation about the recent reports of the sex trade… “Have you Mr. American man heard of such things? Can you believe how sick one can be? Mr. China it does show the how bad things can get for someone to have to resort to such doesn’t it? How horrible that people take advantage of the desperation of others. What losers those are that do such a thing. I mean, if the only way you can ‘get it ‘is to pay someone who will do absolutely anything to feed their family….” Making the ‘conversation’ at a volume that those around can hear also. Even if it did not stop the ‘act’ I can at least hope that during the act my words could cause some ‘interference.’
By the way, the back of Mr. America’s head looks familiar, I wonder if all of ‘them’ look alike? ;(
I talk about the profile on my follow up blog 🙂
I love your suggestion to engage the people in a conversation 🙂