Human Trafficking

1 January 2017

Movie Social Analysis Using the outline below, write a five- to seven-page review of the movie that deals with social issues: 1. A brief overview of the content, story line, and themes; 2. Identification of social aspects that are mirrored in the film; 3. Evaluation and analysis of the movie from a social point of view, with the use of social concepts. Each concept and key terms should be underlined. 4. Summary of your findings and description of changes in your beliefs and attitudes about this social problem.

You may choose a movie to analyze, you must briefly summarize the movie and then move on to the bulk of your paper, to evaluate and analyze it from a social point of view. Keep in mind that your review cannot be just a summary of the movie. You must isolate, define and discuss the social issues shown in the movie, looking for the directorial point of view and discussing what that point of view reveals about how the social issue is depicted.

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PLEASE NOTE: Your paper should not be limited to a summary of the movie. In fact the summary of the plot should be very brief.

It should not be a cognitive assessment or evaluation of the film’s production, or accuracy either. Grading Criteria for Movie review Organization and coherence 20% Evidence and support 30% Analysis and use of course concepts 30% Style and mechanics 20% TOTAL 100% PSY 311 The Whistleblower is based on a true story. It is about an American police officer Kathryn Bolkovac who is offered a job at Bosnia for the United Nations peacekeeping mission after the war. As she gets more involved in her work, she discovers that there exists a sex trafficking band that leads to prostitution of teenage girls.

The movie develops primarily around the story of two girls who are tricked and then lead to prostitution. They are offered an opportunity to work at a well known hotel but that’s a complete lie. They are sent to a border crossing country with illegal passports. They end up at her office and that’s how she starts to investigate. The investigation was not easy at all, the girls didn’t reveal any names because they were threatened and scared of the constant sexual abuse and severe punishments received when not obeying, also the torture and seeing the death of other girls when breaking the rules.

She starts looking for clues that lead her to the leaders of the band, certainly risking her job. After being turned down by various authorities to support her investigation and receiving certain anonymous threads to quit it, Kathryn gets more involved in this, discovering that not only the Bosnian police are involved but, also American officers who are there as peacemakers, her own co workers, high range authorities of the government as well as people who belong to the nongovernmental organization that she works for, the United Nations.

She is fired from her job and has to abandon Bosnia. Furious because nobody wants to stop the band and surprised it’s the authorities who permit it, she goes to the British press and reveals all her investigations mentioning all the names involved in the case. The news becomes worldwide and of course, denied in certain occasions. In this film, The Whistleblower , we can observe several social issues. One of them is human trafficking, which is considered the second largest high paid crime after drug dealing.

The International Organization for Migration (2002) defines this concept the following way: Human trafficking involves controlling and exploiting people after transporting them to a new location, often beyond the borders of their homeland. In this modern form of slavery, traffickers use threats, intimidation, and violence to break their victims’ will and resistance. Human trafficking has become and international business. Unfortunately it exists in all the countries in the world and it’s a high profit industry.

In this case, the girls are victims of sexual exploitation but, not necessarily have to be a sexual type. It can also be used for slavery, working long hours in factories, for selling their organs among other things. The victims usually include women and kids because they are tricked easier. Traffickers usually promise a better life style or more job opportunities. Poverty, bad relationship with family members, abusive history, low self –esteem, discrimination and the lack of education are some of the factors that make people vulnerable for human trafficking.

Tricking is not the only way; in several occasions specially kids are just stolen and sold (Pan American Health Organization, 2012). The conditions in which they treat these persons are mostly harsh, usually treated as slaves. To begin with, if they disobey any order they are threatened, abused and even beaten up. Girls are often sexually abused if they don’t obey the trafficker, even forced to prostitute themselves. What we observed in this movie is human trafficking of minors used for sexual exploitation.

The National Working Group for Sexually Exploited Children and Young People (2008) defines sexual exploitation the following way: “The sexual exploitation of children and young people under 18 involves exploitative situations, contexts and relationships where young people (or a third person or persons) receive ‘something’ (e. g. food, accommodation, drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, affection, gifts, money) as a result of performing, and/or others performing on them, sexual activities.

Child sexual exploitation can occur through use of technology without the child’s immediate recognition, for example the persuasion to post sexual images on the internet/mobile phones with no immediate payment or gain. In all cases those exploiting the child/young person have power over them by virtue of their age, gender, intellect, physical strength and/or economic or other resources” Sexual exploitation not only harms the victim but, also the family and people that surround them.

This involves not only physical damage but also a psychological one, making it difficult to continue with their lives (National Working Group, 2012). Regardless of the country where the trafficking occurs, sadly most women suffer from sexual transmitted diseases as well as forced abortions. The lack of access to health care fearing that they will be deported or threatened by their trafficker deteriorates their quality of life, in occasions exposing them to near death experiences (Pan American Health Organization, 2012).

The persons who are trafficked suffer an extreme violation of their human rights (Pan American Health Organization, 2012) such as the right to liberty, the right to dignity and security of person, the right not to be held in slavery or involuntary servitude, the right to be free from cruel and inhumane treatment, the right to be free from, and last but not least the right to health. If we take a closer look to sexual exploitation, we can see that more social aspects are involved. As mentioned before, women and kids are vulnerable to be trafficked because of their innocence.

Most of the people trafficked lead to sexual exploitation, so we can observe a gender issue here. Many of the victims are searching a better life opportunity which involves an economical factor. We can see in the movie that the two girls in which the plot centers were seeking a better life. Both of them came from a low socio-economical level as well as a dysfunctional family. One of the girls was even sexually abused by a family member, and her mom literally told her to stay away because they lived with the aunt, pushing her out of the family.

Unfortunately, all of these problems mentioned are seen more frequently each day. We can see more kids dropping out of school because they need to work to pay their studies, and here is where traffickers come by and trick them to later explode them. The lack of opportunity to study is an influential factor. All of these lead to a low self- esteem and a poor concept of themselves that if not treated on time it can turn into a depression. This can last several years but if they don’t change this concept it can end up in a suicide. Suicides are becoming a big social issue now a day.

We can see more teenagers committing all around the world. Even though it’s not shown in the movie, it is a consequence too. A big phenomenon involved in this crime is migration. It can be defined as the movement of people across a specified boundary for the purpose of establishing a new or semi-permanent residence (INDEPTH, 2008). Most of the people that end up in this mafia are because they want to get out of their countries and like many don’t have the resources, they get involved with the wrong people. Instead of being helped, this innocent people become victims of human trafficking.

The region in which the movie develops is known for being a conflict zone for several years. The border with the other cities is usually a war zone; influencing in the Bosnian’s way of life. Why can’t they just leave? Several trafficking victims are physically imprisoned and controlled by guards. And if they have the freedom to leave the place in which they leave for several hours, they are being supervised in other ways. Violence is usually involved in this cases including physical, sexual and psychological. Former victims have accepted that in occasions they are beaten with different tools for refusing clients or trying to escape.

Others have said that are forced to use drugs or consume alcohol and that many become addicted. From a social point of view, addictions are also a problem. The abuse of substances such as drugs, alcohol and narcotics can be seen more frequently and have turned into a huge problem in society. They affect the life of millions of people a year causing even hundreds of deaths (Pan American Health Organization, 2012). They can go when they finish paying their debt. They supposedly owe them because they give them food, shelter, a job and moved them out of their country.

It is a never ending debt because it continues growing each day. Victims are usually threatened by the traffickers saying that their family will be harmed. The threats and intimidation has made this profitable business work and continue working through several years (Pan American Health Organization, 2012). HIV/AIDS and other STD’s are very common in the victims. They are exposed to serve sexually too many men a day without protection that getting infected is very common. It is unfair but the number keeps growing of minor girls who suffer from this diseases.

Teenage pregnancies occur because of the unprotected sex as well as many unwanted abortions (Pan American Health Organization, 2012). I find this to be a very awful and enormous business. It is a huge crime organization because victims are trafficked throughout the whole world. It is a complete mafia and the question is who controls it? In my opinion and because of the true facts of the movie, several working government people need to be involved in all the countries. It is said that probably in several years it is going to be the highest paid crime passing the drug dealing business (Querol, 2009).

The Merriam Webster Dictionary (2012) came with this concept of corruption: impairment of integrity, virtue or moral principle. Clearly the people who don’t have any ethics, moral principles, values and integrity. They are not empathic with others feelings and are compulsive liars. The psychological profile of this people is dangerous as well as the one of the sex offenders. The ones who abuse of the children trafficked were probably abused too as a child and have and emotional congruence (Neddermeyer, 2006). This crime involves many social problems because one may lead to another taking away hundreds of lives.

Indirectly it involves a whole family, one person can be the victim but the suffering is for all family members. Definitely thousands of persons get profits from this organization regardless of whether they are harming someone or not. I still can’t believe how they can live of this knowing that it is through people’s suffering. My beliefs about nongovernmental organizations changes completely as well as working government people and police officers. Who can we trust completely anymore? The NGO they mention in this movie is the United Nations but, probably it is not the only one involved in cases like this.

I’m not criticizing the UN because I know they have many positive things too and help a lot of people but, now I’m aware that they are also corrupted and have their negative parts. I’m glad that people like officer Bolkovac still exist and that are willing to risk everything including their job to break this system. She could’ve cooperated indirectly with this crime by just ignoring it and being blind as many others do but, she fought for what she thought was fair exposing herself to even being killed. I’m also very happy that she didn’t stay silent. She went with the press and told the names that were involved.

Even though some denied it she did and effort and contributed with what was in her hands to stop this mafia, because this is what it is. As a psychology student I think I can support a little to stop this crime. Maybe I can’t go a check places and have court orders to enter places but, I can the victims with their emotions and self-esteem issues to feel confident about themselves making them less vulnerable to be victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. The social issues mentioned before such as addictions, depression, dysfunctional families, lack of education and low self- esteem can be treated.

That’s were psychologist participate and have a big role changing the lives of these people preventing this horrible crime. I’m sad that all this social problems exist and the number keeps growing but I’m happy that I can help, whether it is preventing it or helping directly the persons affected.

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Human Trafficking. (2017, Jan 26). Retrieved July 18, 2019, from
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