My grandma, who gets credit for telling me this, said that in the 1920′s to 1930′s, the government ran a campaign to get people to bathe more for health reasons. People just didn’t bathe much and they needed to be educated on the healthiness of doing so every day. The campaign went something like, “A Bath A Day…” Eventually everybody changed their habits and now I bathe once a month whether I need it or not. Seriously tough, they actually made a change for the better of society.
In the above link, a British minister wants to dig deeper into the sexual grooming of children for trafficking purposes. I support and applaud him and feel he has his work cut out for him. The article also mentions a group of Asian men that were arrested in Derby England for grooming children as young as 12.
I was in training last week at a university in Florida. One of the instructors said that he was in Indonesia training a group of police officers about human trafficking and child sexual trafficking. Nineteen of the police officers were women police officers. The instructor got the feeling from the officers he was teaching that girls having sex around the ages of 14 and younger with grown men was not unusual or even shocking. The instructor then polled the women officers and found out that all 19 women had their first experience with a close adult relative around the age of 14. These are women police officers in that country. That means that there’s a pretty good chance that the male officers don’t think that it’s taboo either.
Yesterday I was talking to some wonderful ladies from Malaysia at the International Center here in Indianapolis. We were talking about human trafficking cases that were local and of course we started talking about the cultural problems like the one mentioned with the Indonesian police officers. Everybody agreed that changing a culturally way of thinking is extremely difficult. It’s especially difficult if it’s something that’s happening but also not brought into conversation. For example, I’ll use something that happened in this country and my family. Back about the same time the “Bath A Day” campaign came out, my Great-Grandma from an old German family, had her third child. Even though they knew back then that having a kid was stressful, they didn’t talk about it. Well she decided to plunge herself into a deep horse bath and kill herself. Sure there were other things going on in her life but now they know that post partum depression is a serious thing and was missed often back then and ignored.
We can’t solve the world’s problems but when it comes to kids (under 18) being exploited or a family member having their way with them, it needs to be unacceptable in any culture. Basically those governments need to find a way to establish “A Bath A Day” in their own countries and make the practice a norm and not the exception.
By the way, the first grandma mentioned is still going strong in her 90′s.