The league of {social} justice!

In the debut issue of Dallas Christian Family Magazine, I wrote a column on social justice and the single. During the last few years, social justice has become very important to me. I don’t care much about politics. They frustrate me. But people? I love people.

I was in Ireland a few years ago, just after the movie Amazing Grace came out. The movie highlighted the abolitionist movement that was spearheaded by William Wilberforce 200 years ago. Buncrana, the town that I was staying in had ties to the story – it was where John Newton wrote Amazing Grace. The townspeople were proud of the connection. But some people believed that not enough was being done. Slavery is still an issue around the world. The statistics for human trafficking are staggering. Thousands of people simply disappear out of their own lives, being smuggled across borders into houses and cheap motels. People dare put a price on humanity, money being used to buy sex. Not everyone who is trafficked ends up in the sex trade. There is still a robust market for domestic slaves, similar to what Wilberforce and other traditional abolitionists were fighting against. People are unaware of the problem because they don’t know what the face of slavery looks like any longer. Sometimes it follows racial lines but by and large, slavery is colorblind. Buyers will buy anyone. There’s been a recent resurgence in the abolitionist movement.

As passionate millenials come of age, more and more of them are using their voices to spread the word that slavery will not be tolerated any longer. I’m proud to be a young abolitionist. I firmly believe that all men (and women) were created equal. They may not be born into the same socioeconomic environment but that does not mean that they do not all have the same intrinsic worth. The price of a human soul cannot be measured by net worth.

In the Fall 2009, YWAM helped launch a group of young artists creating a documentary called Sex + Money: The search for a human’s worth. You can learn more about the project on their website. In the future, they will also be offering resources on how you can get involved in this movement.

Another project is taking place in India. Instead of focusing on a people being trafficked, it focuses on people being trivialized. This isn’t about people being ignored, it’s about people being treated inhumanely. The caste system has not lost its stranglehold on the people of India. The Dalit people are on the bottom of the social order. It has been estimated that there are as many Dalits in India as there are American’s in the United States. Imagine the entire nation being trivialized, forced to pick up sticks for a living, told that education would do them no good, and living in sewer pipes and street corners. For the Dalit people, this is a reality. Dogs are treated better than Dalits.

My friends Stacey and Noel cofounded an organization called Redeem the Shadows. In the summer of 2007, the three of us were partnering with OM, a group that helps mobilize churches. Just before coming to England, Stacey learned about the Dalits. While she was spending the summer, she found out that OM works extensively with the Dalit people, running medical clinics and schools to help improve the quality of life for them. She was intrigued and became educated about the Dalits and what was being done. Within a few weeks, she became passionate about them and came up with a plan to raise awareness and money for them. Whenever she had the opportunity, she would tell anyone and everyone what she was learning. She knew that it had to be from God and she was going to everything she could to make her dream become a reality. Something sparked inside of Noel as well and many hours were spent discussing the project at our base or the local Wetherspoons. I vaguely recall a yellow legal pad brimming with ideas being scribbled on during our lunch breaks. Three years later, Noel and Stacey are on the ground in India, shooting a documentary about the plight of the Dalit people. Instead of letting their dream die, they are sacrificing to make it a reality.

I love it when people are passionate about people. When that fire burns in their heart and they will do anything to stop the injustice that they see being passively accepted. For the Sex+Money crew, they are traveling around the United States in an RV. That’s hardly glamorous or comfortable as there are quite a few of them. They are tackling a topic that is uncomfortable and dangerous. They aren’t investing in their 401k or working on getting a “real job.” Stacey’s life was changed that summer we spent in England. She’s reprioritized her life. Noel has made sacrifices as well. No one is independently wealthy, they aren’t living the dream life. They are altering their lives so that the lives of others can be changed. That’s worth thinking about.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: