Vietnam: Sex Trafficking in Saigonby Mong Palatino
Lets face it, prostitution has always been a fixture of District 1 Saigon, and it will never go away. However, it doesn't have to be so prominent--so in-your-face. Round and round these young women, men and children go, soliciting sex (as well as hardcore drugs), in front of authorities who are all-too aware of their activities. Try walking along Pham Ngu Lao in the evenings and they will get in your way, block your path and hound you... not once, not twice, but every few meters. Does it really have to be like this?
So why am I writing about this? Because I want it to change--ultimately I want it to stop, but at the very least, I want to reduce it. People need to be shocked, embarrassed, upset. Businesses in the area--particularly bars like Buffalo, Go2 and Allezboo, need to do more to discourage criminal activity around their bars, including prostitution, child exploitation and hardcore drugs. Expats need to stop denying that a problem exists, or for that matter stop suggesting that there is nothing wrong with these crimes. Tourists and expats alike need to stop patronizing businesses that benefit from these criminal activities as well. Lets work together to clean out the trash.
Certinly it exists because there is a very high demand. Tourists want it. American Servicemen want it. The French wanted it, and I'd say most Vietnamese men want it. For that reason it will never be eliminated. However, slavery existed (exists) because of demand, along with a miriad of other sins and social evils. Even though it might never be eliminated, I think at least diminishing it is a worthy and possible effort. Right now it's a three-ring circus. But first, to make any headway, the folks who's job it is to actually stop this stuff need to be motivated to get off their ass.
Text Available under Creative Commons license.