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Brianna Martinez

Katie Lewis

English 2010

1/25/19

Cultural Analysis

How many times have you heard of women and young girls being kidnapped? I know I

can think of multiple times. During this time across the nation and even all over the world, sex

trafficking has been a prominent issue. In the movie “Taken”, it shows the danger of traveling

alone to foreign countries. The movie stars Liam Neeson, who is a former government agent, and

finds out his daughter has been taken. He courageously goes after his daughters’ kidnappers.

This film had premiered in 2009. The film takes place in Paris, France.

European countries had reported that between 2013 – 2014 there had been 15,486 victims

of human trafficking. 76% of that number had been women and young girls. While human

trafficking has different categories such as sexual exploitation, forced labor, and unknown work.

67% is sexual exploitation, 95% of sexual exploitation are female. Many of the victims come

from Romania, Bulgaria, The Netherlands, Hungary, and Poland. Throughout the world it is

estimated that 21 million people are victims of human trafficking, and 70% of that number are

women and young girls.

The United States isn’t immune to human trafficking. Since 2000 the United States had

made child sex trafficking illegal. Under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act it is illegal to

recruit, harbor, transport, provide or obtain a person under the age of 18 years for the purpose of
commercial sex acts. Although the United States are viewed as criminals other than victims.

According to the department of justice in 2006, 1,600 children were arrested for prostitution.

These children are first used for commercial sex as young as 11-14.

Pop culture has become more involved with cases with sex trafficking, such as famous

actors and social media influencers. Ashton Kutcher has even put his acting career on hold while

he helps his foundation fight and save those who are trafficking victims. Ashton Kutcher has an

organization called “Thorn.” In 2016 his organization had saved 6,000 victims. Kim Kardashian,

Amy Schumer, Ashley Judd, and other celebrities fought for Cyntoia Browns release from

prison. For those who don’t know who Cyntoia Brown is, she is a woman who was 16 when she

killed a man with the name Johnny Mitchell Allen that had solicited her for sex and abused her

himself. She shot him in the head while he was sleeping, took money and guns, stole his vehicle

and fled. She was arrested and convicted for murder and robbery in 2004. She was sentenced to

51 years in prison before being eligible for parole. This year Tennessee’s governor has granted

her clemency and will be released to parole in August.

Sex trafficking deals with other issues concerning gender, race, and economic class.