[Black] Girl's Guide to Avoiding Human Trafficking
It could happen to anybody - a five word statement that’s always wrapped around life’s scariest things, and trafficking is no exception.
Society’s List of Damnations is already extensive, but this is definitely in the top 5, especially when it comes to women and children. The realization that you or someone you love could be doing literally anything and suddenly be TAKEN is so freaky. There are major rings of people across the globe involved in this kind of fuckery, and that will never be ok.
For whatever reason (*money???), a resolution has yet to be found. So until that day comes, it’s up to us to protect ourselves and each other.
Red Flags to Watch Out For
- Gut Instinct: You be knowingggggg. Trust your gut. If something feels off, it more than likely is and you need to gtf. Even if it ends up being nothing, better safe than sorry.
- Weird Interactions: Sure, it’s nice to be nice but don’t be afraid to stiff arm somebody who makes you wonder wtf they’re doing talking to you. There’s a difference between a polite stranger asking for directions and some sketcho that seems to be trying to bait you into something.
Story Time! : I had a run-in like this in the middle of my happy place - TARGET. (Yes, I know. How dare they try to tarnish my red-emblazoned safe space)(This was in the ATL, Georgia area, at the one in Perimeter, for anyone that goes there)
A maybe late 30s Indian woman approached me, which immediately put a question mark over my head - it was just so far out of the norm for me that it was confusing. She was dressed in very plain clothes and just looked so suburban that that’s what made me wonder why she felt the need to spark up a conversation with me. I recall noticing that we were the only ones in that section at the time - I forget what time of day it was, but I worked an odd schedule back then. I’d be off when most people were at work.
Basically her bait was that she had just moved to the area and it was just her, her husband and her baby and she didn’t have any friends, so she was looking for people to hang out with. I know, red-tf-flag. But me, still confused, too trusting, and too nice, actually gave her my number.
In hindsight, I should have never engaged or just been like “girl fuck u and ur family,” but we don’t always do the things we should.
I felt icky afterwards but we parted ways and I finished shopping. I don’t recall feeling like I was being watched or followed afterwards, even when going to my car. She never called or messaged. Sometimes I wonder what happened to her after that. Did she start feeling bad and decided not to pursue me any further? Did she get in trouble for not making a successful snatch? Was she really just looking for friends and felt awkward about our weird encounter and decided not to call??? Whatever the case, it doesn’t matter. I’m just glad I was able to walk away safely.
Here’s some input from Twitter to supplement the rest of this section, because this is my blog, and I can do that (s/o to this young lady & her Twitter thread, which inspired this entire rambling & other conversations around trafficking:
Friendly Neighborhood Girl Gang
It takes a village to do more than just raise a child - we really have to start squadding up for each other.
Most of us know if we see someone being bothered, we can pretend we know them and try to help get them away from whoever’s following them. For the harrassee, it can be a little embarrassing to be on the spot and have this person tailing you. Don’t feel weak or anything ridiculous like that.
If you spot an obvious baiting going on and can think of a safe (because we want to protect you, too!) way to help out, go for it. If you’re at the bar, feel free to alert the most brolic bouncer you can find.
No one wants to come across somebody slumped out drunk and (seemingly) alone, but maybe, just maybe, calling an authority would be more helpful than just leaving them there. Feel free to do this from a distance. You don’t even have to go up to the person. In some places, you can even text 911 if you don’t feel like you can make a phone call.
And, lastly, if you happen to be with some friends that’s ‘bout it, feel free to jump whoever incites smoke by trying to poach the homie. Just saying.
Be aware of your surroundings - my best friend’s grandma always tells us to watch our backs and our fronts!
Check in with your folks - share your location with somebody, if you can!
Avoid particularly sketchy places during particularly sketchy times of the day.
Be wary of strangers (especially if they’re driving for Uber…that’s another can of worms. Here’s a YouTube video)
Don’t freak yourself out!! Please live your life. There’s evil in the world, sure, but there’s also so much good and so much to see.
Unfortunately, this is the kind of post that can and will grow with experience. These mfs are updating their trick bag, and we’re gonna do the same for as long as necessary.
Got tips? Please feel free to share!
*Not pointing no fingers, but mfs across the globe are profiting off sex, obviously. Same way they do drugs - both vices are maligned in most communities, but they make big bread, mainly for the big bread makers. That leaves small-timers wanting in, but it’s illegal-ISH. I say “ish” because they’re still out here and there’s only so many sting operations that can happen. IF proper forces even feel the need - there are some situations that lead to cast eyes, and these types of oversights are fucking us all. Shutting down Backpage doesn’t do much when people can send money through some of the most popular apps; plus cash is still king. People are really so sick that money can help them justify to themselves the way they’re ruining people’s lives. Can y’all not find another way to stir up some coin? Buy some wholesale outfits and start a store or something! It’s the IG way!