Swindled Out of Freedom and Into Slavery

By: Viviana Garcia

Pross, Long. (2009). Oprah.com.

The prospect of a well paying job for a college student is sometimes attractive enough to justify putting certain things on the line, but for Yumi Li, a Chinese student traveling to the States, it was her dignity and self-worth that were at risk, not a late assignment. Nicholas Kristof, writer for the New York Times and Nobel Peace Prize winner, states in an article that, “Nearly 150 years after the Emancipation Proclamation, it’s time to wipe out the remnants of slavery in this country.” Here he tells of Li’s story, which took place in November of 2010, the year she headed for the US in hopes of securing an accounting job, but instead wound up being forced to work within the walls of a brothel. The men who organized this operation were located in an office on 36th Street in Midtown Manhattan. Hers is a story similar to that of a plethora of other young women tortured within the slave-trade industry.

Recently, the New York Times ran a story on a Manhattan case involving two girls (15 and 17) that had been advertised on Craigslist. Often it is the case, that the customers benefiting from their services, are unaware of their involuntary duty to their oppressors. What can be done, according to Kristof is to “focus more on customers and, above all, on pimps,” those are not as easy to prosecute within our judicial system.


Kristof, Nicholas. (November 27, 2010). “A Woman. A Prostitute. A Slave.” Retrieved January 28, 2011 from the
New York Times website: http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/01/26/two-indicted-for-pimping-girls-

Robbins, Liz and Rosenberg, Noah. (January 26, 2011). “Two Charged With Pimping Girls on Craigslist.” Retrieved
January 28, 2011 from the New York Times website: http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/01/26/two-

Published in: on February 3, 2011 at 4:27 am  Leave a Comment  

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