Last night, I joined Compton and The Russell for a screening of Playground, director Libby Shears latest documentary on the interstate sex trafficking of American children. In the Q&A that followed with Shears and reps from DC policy groups, it was noted that as of 2005, federal dollars had been authorized for programs to develop shelters and intervention resources, thereby decriminalizing and devictimizing the children who are basically sold into prostitution. And, oddly, as of FY 2010, the authorized dollars have yet to actually be appropriated for use. We throw around billions of dollars everyday like it’s going out of style, what’s a few more that might actually go to good use?
On a more ironic side note, in the film’s discussion of the sexualization of children in mainstream marketing, American Apparel ads are heavily cited. Strangely enough, for a clothing company, the young women featured were mostly anything but clothed (something parodied on on Cracked.com). This, from a company that proudly touts its positive environmental and economic consciousness (“Sweatshop Free, Made in the USA”).