Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Real Heroes

When it comes to combating human trafficking, who are the real heroes in this fight? I’ve given a lot of thought to this. So far, I’ve come up with three.

To answer the hero question, you must first ask another question: What’s the real goal here? Is it simply to bring justice to victims? I’m all for justice. But that’s not the real goal in this fight.

To make this fight only about or even chiefly about justice misses an important point. Justice does a lot for victims, but it doesn’t teach them how to live free. Justice may help victims realize that they’re worth fighting for, but it does not sufficiently heal their deepest psychological wounds.

So who are the real heroes in this fight? Again, we have to ask: What is the real goal in this battle? Justice for victims and lasting freedom for survivors is the only real goal worth seeking.

Does this mean, then, that the caregivers who provide shelter or the counselors who promote healing or the vocational trainers who inspire hope are the real heroes? Yes, as much as law enforcement, prosecutors, the courts, and jailers. But, as I’ve said, there are only three real heroes in this fight.…Well, actually four.

People who pray for this cause are heroes. People who serve this cause are heroes. And people who give to this cause are heroes. Those are the only three heroes that I’ve come up with. And yes, every survivor is a hero but particularly those who tell their stories in order to shine more light on this ugly darkness.

Act heroically. Do good.

Children, you show love for others by truly helping them, and not merely by talking about it. (1 John 3:18, Contemporary English Version)