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Girl child prostitution, a disturbing trend: Part 1

KUNGWENGWE STAR CHARLES


Almost all religions ,and cultures alike , across the globe ,portray children as godly-perfect beings(metaphorically speaking)  and ,as such, handle them carefully .In Mark 10:14;Matthew 18:3 Jesus Christ asserts that the ‘Kingdom of God’ belongs to them.
This is so because their minds are still naïve in the light of the vulgar aspects of life.


Accordingly, the prophet Isaiah, saw in his vision seraphims (youthful angels) surrounding God’s throne (Isaiah 6:1-2). Even  an animal  of a base instinct such as a dog, no matter how fierce it might be, oftentimes jealously guard and would fight to death in order to protect its youngsters. Every society that seriously considers its self-renewal, perpetuation or sustainable development has a mandate to guard its offspring from danger.  


Contrary to the above-mentioned virtues, children have joined the world’s oldest profession, prostitution and our salacious men, some very old, for that matter, are preying on them. Yes tones and tones of paper and volumes of ink have been used to campaign against girl child premature marriages but to date little or nothing at all has been said about girl-child prostitution yet the girl –child is very vulnerable.   For example, it is estimated that about 60% of those who are HIV positive or have died of AIDS are the youthful. Or maybe much has been said about the problem in question but little has been done to address it—just a talk-show.  Does it imply then that this (child prostitution) is a better evil?.


 According to statistics child prostitutes constitute a large percentage of the population. Some, as young as 10, are always seen swarming around beer-halls like bees around a flower and that is a very disturbing trend indeed!. And countries which are leading culprits in this regard include Sri Lanka, Thailand, Brazil and even the US, the so-called paragon of civilized societies. Thailand, for example, registered about 800 000 child prostitutes who were below 16 years in 2004 while UNICEF indications are that there are at least 40 000 recognized child prostitutes in Sri Lanka.

The U.S.A boasts of between 1,4 to 2,4 million children as young as 12 who have joined this risky trade. As if this tragedy were not enough on its own, the desperate toddlers are subjected to sexual exploitation as most are getting as little as 80p per transaction, an amount that is just enough to secure basic needs.


For fear of reviving your wounds let me not venture into the emotive topic of child trafficking by some unscrupulous money-maniacs. These ‘kids’ are used and abused  for the purposes of turning them into prostitutes ,for personal gain, by these greedy  people who are ,at best ,without a single soft spot on their hearts and ,at worst ,heartless.


The situation is even worse during wartimes when these vulnerable and gullible people are lured or forced to render free sexual services to soldiers. According to Wikipedia globally more than 10 million children, especially in South America and Asia, are forced into prostitution each year and in Third World, developing countries, it is estimated that a significant number of children are on the streets.


A wide range of factors account for this trend but, due to both time and space, this writer will identify only a few:
First, unlike was the case in the yesteryears, nowadays children are being thrust into the world of adulthood at a very tender age. In this age of globalization, in which by merely pressing the knob of a computer, one is exposed to what is happening millions of kilometers away, these youngsters view various obscenities on the internet eg pornographic materials. 

This equally applies for modern entertainment, on romance, which the girl-child views daily on the television screen. And all children would want to experiment what they see thereon. Seeing is believing, they say, as opposed to hearsay or town-talk.
Added to this problem is poverty, coupled with child –headed families, as the AIDS pandemic continues to spread its tentacles into the social fabric at alarming proportions.

The child, especially the girl-child, would have the unenviable burden to fend for both herself and her youngsters. This is the traditional role of women, in general.  Self-preservation, they say, is a natural instinct in the face of danger, unless one has a disproportionately large sense of endurance or sacrifice, large enough to equal that of Jesus Christ who offered his life in order to save the world. Such rare people are indeed abnormal.

Our law has nothing to do with either the abnormal (above the normal) or the subnormal (below the normal) but the normal, usual or reasonable man (diligens paterfamilias standards) whose conduct we must strive to emulate. Harsh economic times can easily weaken one’s moral stamina .In that context, one hardly thinks of morality while on an empty stomach. This is the case of the proverbial drowning person, who can do anything, even if it means clinging to straw, in a bid to save deal life. The implications are self-evident.


 Most Schools of Thought hold the view that the end justifies the means while others contend that the means must justify that end. According to the former group of philosophers what is important is merely getting food on the table and not how that food has been obtained and this is the reasoning of most people, including the girl child herself. But this solution amounts just winning a single battle and not the war or to what Shakespeare describes as merely ‘scotching the snake but not killing it’ as it begets worse problems such as HIVAIDS. To the girl child it never rains but it pours. It would appear as if all the plagues of Egypt and a few more have combined their crushing weight against her.   


 Over and above that, poverty-related accommodation problems can also contribute to the above tragedy. We shall revisit this issue next week when we explore the concept parental abuse.  
Peer pressure (45% of the cases) from deviant girl children, who even come from well-to-do families, and attendant juvenile delinquency is another cancer that has been eating from the heart aspects of the girl-child morality to a point where she is now a bare skeleton of moral decay. This is understandable because children, and practical experience has proved, time without number, are both impressible and impressionable.


The death of the traditional extended family network, which used to allow uncles and aunties to play a crucial role in the upbringing of the child so that shehe would grow up with a sense of moral values, has not helped the situation either. This is the dark side of capitalism and westernization in typical African settings.


 Capitalism is also associated with materialism or the urge to get rich at the slightest given opportunity and at whatever cost, even if it means prostitution .The vultures of Westernization have not only killed the animal of African culture but are also picking clean its decomposing carcass.  Needless to say, the disintegration of the traditional extended family system has engendered the development of street ‘kidding’ to those orphaned children who have nowhere to go. Apart from begging, these kids tend to supplement their meager alms with money gained from prostitution. This disintegration of the extended family has other implications – the phenomenon of sugar daddies and jelly-mummies.

In the past all elderly persons used to regard every child, even non biological ones, as their own product and would always be indifferent to the girl’s sexual appeal, no matter how appetizing or mouth-watering she might be. Furthermore, the elderly had a right to discipline  every  child ,anywhere ,but now that is regarded unlawful ,unless one is either in a protective relationship  with the child or has another legal duty to perform concerning the child. As a result, the child is now at liberty to misbehave, while away from the watchful eye of her parents. Our governments deserve blame in this regard.


Also, back then one‘s biological product would always be one‘s child no matter how old, till death did them part, and would always be given advice by these parents. All this has been overturned by the so-called Legal Majority Age (18) that has been misconstrued to mean upon the attainment of the above age a child is automatically free to mislead herself, away from the wise advisory words of her parents. The children tend to forget that these parents   are tried, tested and trusted in this regard. Perhaps, to sound like John Dewey, the Pragmatist Philosopher, they (parents) have long worn a tight shoe and therefore know where it pinches most, as opposed to ear-witnessing!


Because of modern entertainment, which the girls ape, and the freedom which the latter enjoy at a time when parental advice can easily be mistaken for child abuse, the girls go around naked in the ‘miniskirts’. How seductive!. Of course ,no-one can deny the fact that in some countries the weather is very hot ,and no-one can deny the fact that democracy allows freedom of dressing ,but the girls tend to overstep the mark in this regard and in the process advertise their velvet thighs .Maybe these are fashion issues.  

 
What worsens the above situation is the fact that some countries in the so-called civilized world, such as South Africa, have legalized this contra bonores mores practice under the guise that this promotes individual freedoms, an aspect of the Bill of Rights human rights. This relaxation of such laws also allows the girl-child to peddle her flesh and she may not be spotted since prostitutes do not carry around identity cards to show their ages.    


Another significant fraction of these deviant children are victims of rape and other various forms of abuse suffered at the hands of men. Often, rapists are close relatives whose identities will never be disclosed due to the stigma associated with such taboo sexual relations. It is no hyperbole to say victims of rape are usually blamed as having invited the men ,by say, through  putting on ‘provocative outfit’, and hence the cautionary rule that is invoked in the law of evidence whenever such cases are facts in issue.  


Added to the above plight, the child may fall pregnant and automatically graduate into a mother but without the resources to fend for her child. This child’s child would also  need to be fed and in these times of economic hardships if this feat cannot be achieved through fair means it must be by foul ones then——prostitution. And with no jobs available and no extended family network durawall to fall back lean on either the beer-garden or street becomes the next destination. Prostitution thus becomes an escape route-easy route to get money because the ‘job’ needs neither an academic qualification nor capital.

It sounds logical but a cost-benefit analysis is needed in the light of this immediate ‘benefit’ versus associated long-term dangers such as HIVAIDS. But it could also be argued that immediate needs, hunger, by far outweigh unforeseeable ones such as HIVAIDS. She may also seek solace in drug abuse as a way of toning down her misery (Proverbs 31:6-7) or engage in other risky misconducts. Research has proven that there is a cor-relationship between joblessness or idleness and crimemischief: an idle mind is the devil’s workshop.   
We now come to the end of this article . This writer shall further explore or stretch this topic far and wide in the oncoming series.


 (Charles is a Lawyer, political philosopher, historian, sociologist and gender activist)
 

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Export Processing Zones: How to Get SEZA to Sizzle

23rd September 2020
Export Processing Zone (EPZ) factory in Kenya

In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.

It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.

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Egypt Bagged Again

23rd September 2020
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… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan

With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.

Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.

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‘RO, ‘RO ‘RO YOUR ‘BOT

23rd September 2020

If I say the word ‘robot’ to you,  I can guess what would immediately spring to mind –  a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and  tv shows.  Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name,  Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama,  Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…

Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us  inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator,  Box in Logan’s Run,  Police robots in Elysium and  Otomo in Robocop.

And that’s to name but a few.  As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves.  And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of  robotics in the workplace.

ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.

A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles.  It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.

DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.

AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,

AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.

INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour

These examples all come from the aptly-named site www.willrobotstakemyjob.com    because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.

This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count!  For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars.  It’s a theory, at any rate.

Already, customers at the South-Korean  fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic.  The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners.  Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.   

‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP. 

Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions. 

Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders.  Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.

These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly  Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.

And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth.  Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.

But there may be more redundancies on the way as well.  Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable?  So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid?  Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons  may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!

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