From Professional Truck Driver John Grosvenor
Honor and Valor
22 years ago when I started driving big trucks, I witnessed a 379 Peterbilt parked in the back of a truck stop in Michigan. A large group of teenage girls (not of consenting age) emerged from that truck and started “working” the truck stop. They appeared to be directed by a middle-aged Asian woman. Many years later I stopped at a travel plaza in West Virginia. When I parked my truck I sat there staring at a man who looked out of place. Later, I was in the food court sitting in a booth next to 2 young women (minors) who were having lunch, when suddenly this man arrived and commanded one of them away, making her leave her lunch at the table. I was appalled at what I was seeing, but I didn't know exactly what to do at the time.
Throughout the years I have seen a lot of prostitution. It's my observation that it's not too often that you see someone working under the control of others, BUT it doesn't mean that they aren't. It just means that handlers don't necessarily like to be seen. They don't need to be on site due to their brutal coercion tactics. Just the same, not all people are working by force, but that doesn't exclude that there is a sickness involved. One 60 year-old women tried to solicit herself to me in Las Vegas, Nevada to support her gambling addiction. With others it's drug addiction. No matter what the reason, when someone pays for sex with a prostituted person, that money goes to support sickness and usually ends up in the hands of criminals or in organized crime.
The United States was founded on the principles of high standards and values; that everyone has the right to the pursuit of happiness. There is no happiness in slavery to another person or slavery to addiction. The fact that the Federal Government has failed to stop the 3 worst crimes in America, illegal drug trafficking, illegal arms trafficking, and human trafficking that plague the people of our country, means that it behooves the American people to take action by whatever legal means possible to stop this atrocity. Innocent children are kidnapped every day off the streets of good and rough neighborhoods and forced into prostitution. This can only continue when good men don't have the honor and valor to stand up against the greater evil.
Consider this, there is a ratio of 245 law enforcement officers to 100,000 people in the United States and only 10 percent of the criminals are incarcerated. That's a lot of criminals overwhelming the law enforcement community. In order to achieve the goal of eliminating human trafficking, we as a society of people need to get involved to assist the law enforcement officers of our country. The FBI uses the info we give to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center tip hotline number when we call 888-373-7888 and report what we are seeing. They use the tips to help inform their national raids and rescues.
However, we can do more! We as drivers have other tools that can be utilized to help prevent this sort of crime. Cell phones take great pictures that can be used to document what's going on and help to identify perpetrators of human trafficking; whether it's pimps or individuals paying for the services of human trafficking. The C.B. radio is still a useful tool when you witness activities in truck stops you may inform others that you are opposed to such activities and will be documenting it with pictures, truck numbers, and DOT numbers to inform their employer and law enforcement of any criminal activity that a person may be involved in. Even if you have no intention on following through with it, it gives you an opportunity to create a conversation to promote awareness of human trafficking. Thought has a contagious quality and by communicating with each other we can create unity in the trucking community.
Murder is a terrible crime, to break a person’s spirit is spiritual murder. That is what perpetrators do when they engage in human trafficking. It is my hope that my fellow drivers can bring themselves to act with honor and valor if the time comes for them to do so.