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Mayor Bowser and Chief Lanier: Take Some Action to Save Ariana-Leilani and Other Children in DC

Distinguished columnist Colby King writes that action needs to be taken now on the epidemic of child prostitution and trafficking in the District of Columbia:

“Human trafficking is a cruel and inhumane practice found in countries around the world. So it should come as no surprise that President Obama proclaimed this month National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month.

“The exploitation and coercion of girls and young women into prostitution, however, is not limited to places overseas.

“Right here in the nation’s capital, our most vulnerable residents — children — are subjected to sex slavery. Their stories don’t make the evening news or even warrant blurbs in your morning paper. But human trafficking is, and has been, a shadowy and seamy part of D.C. life….

….

U.S. attorney spokesman Bill Miller told me this week, “Since 2009, about 70 defendants have been prosecuted in [federal and D.C. courts] on charges related to human trafficking . . . including abducting or enticing a child into prostitution.”

“The overwhelming majority of those cases” he added, “resulted in convictions.”

“The U.S. attorney’s office has a large task force and an active outreach program on human trafficking, and is urgently scheduling training sessions with D.C. police and schools. Seven churches are joining the Faith Coalition Against Sex Trafficking in our Nation’s Capital to sponsor a meeting Jan. 30.

“They can’t do it alone.

“Let’s help the president and the prosecutors: Human trafficking is in our region, in the nation’s capital, in your ward, on your block.

“Open your eyes. Don’t look abroad. Look down the street.”

Read more:  Colby King on Child Trafficking in DC

Please sign the petition to Save DC Resident Ariana-Leilani.

GoPetition

Sign the Petition to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Martin Luther King’s March on Washington

Injustice in DC Must Be Eliminated

Injustice in DC Must Be Eliminated

Fifty years ago today, the civil rights movement convened hundreds of thousands on the mall in front of the Lincoln Memorial to raise awareness and push for equal rights for all Americans.  Fifty years later, we stand today with laws that ban discrimination on the basis of the color of a person’s skin.  However, that is not enough.

The United States still has not adopted any federal laws guaranteeing children their rights.  The USA has still been the only holdout in ratifying the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

10 Year old African-American Ariana-Leilani is still being treated as property,right in the shadows of the Lincoln Memorial.   Treated as subhuman, she is still being denied her right to life saving medicine and medical care.

ariana-leilani

Ariana-Leilani

The District of Columbia government stands idly by and does nothing to help her.   It is ironic that the very persons speaking at today’s event, including Mayor Gray and President Obama, hold the keys to her proper treatment.   They will speak of the fight that we must continue for civil rights.   But, their actions speak louder than their words.   Send them a message, to walk the walk, and don’t just talk the talk.

Sign the petition to help save Ariana-Leilani.

GoPetition for ariana-leilani

For me, the speech is specifically about the recognition that all of us are human beings, that we all have human rights and all of our human rights are equal. It doesn’t matter where you live, how you live, who you love, who your family is, how much money you have, we all start out being human beings. And to me, Martin Luther King was quite poignant in the fact that he was able to give that speech and allow people to see what he was talking about, that he was actually referring to our future in seeing children walking hand in hand.

Mayor Gray Speaks About Dr. King’s Fight for Rights, But What About Those of 10 Year Old Ariana-Leilani

Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X meet bef...

In his remarks on WTOP on August 11, 2013, Mayor Gray reminisced about when he was a college student at George Washington University, and how he participated in Dr. King’s March on Washington for civil rights.   He said:

I consider it to be the greatest speech ever because Dr. King successfully appealed to Americans of all backgrounds to live up to the promises on which our country was founded – that all human beings are created equal, and that we deserve equal rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Ariana-Leilani is a 10 year old German African American living in Ward 3, just blocks from Mayor Gray’s office on Pennsylvania Avenue.    We wish he would act on his stated beliefs and make a reality “equal rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” for Ariana-Leilani.   Assuring her rights is within his power;  Mayor Gray needs to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s March on Washington, please sign Ariana-Leilani’s Petition:

GoPetition for ariana-leilani