I've recently gotten into listening to investigative journalism bits while working. Logging into sites for shows like 60 minutes, 20/20, and This American Life, the stories on these shows have kept my mind active and awake and have helped me stay up to do with the happenings of the world.
Last week I came across this story on the ABC site.
Americans Targeted for Allegedly Running Underage Prostitution in Philippines - ABC News
Of course, being Filipino, I was drawn to the story and had to listen to it and OMG. I was kind of embarrassed that this sort of thing was happening in my motherland, but I can't say that I was surprised: The Philippines is a third world country where a majority of the people are poor and in their poverty stricken desperation, are willing to do anything, including prostitute themselves to anyone willing to pay.
I've heard other stories about foreigners going to the Philippines and participating in these sort of activities. One of them, an American exec. who fathered this kid from a Filipino stripper. The Exec died, and the mother is trying to file claim to some inheritance for her son.. at least that's the story that I remembered hearing.
Hearing the story on ABC was a reality check. I think I often live so engrossed in my nice little American bubble of a life, that I tend to forget that there is a world that exists outside this bubble, one where women living in a 3rd world country succumb to prostitution as a means of survival. While my initial reaction in hearing the story was that of disgust and embarrassment, both for the women who succumb themselves to that sort of lifestyle and for the fact that it was an American who bragged that he had all these women in the Philippines ( and a wife in the states who had no idea - thank you for representing America is such a light you sleezy bastard ) I stopped myself and thought really, what would you do if you were in that situation? I mean, I would would like to think that my moral standard would prevail given that situation, that the thought of being a prostitute would make my stomach turn and that I would do everything in my power to get myself out of that shit hole of life while maintaining my dignity. But then again, I am not them and they are not me; I was never given their hardships to experience to begin with, never forced to make their decisions. So, I'll leave all judgement aside, pray for those girls and any girl who is in a similar situation, and hope for country will someday - somehow be better.