Human Trafficking and its Relation to the Poetry
Rosemary Thompson who is the coordinator of the “Murphy Initiative for Justice and Peace in Maryland,” spoke about the tragic of Human Trafficking. She talked about how it is a theme that is not widely spoken about. The event was teaching us how important it is to be educated and understand what is going on around worldwide. Fr. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach writes about the Jesuit education in “The Service of Faith and Promotion of Justice in Jesuit Higher Education,” and the importance of helping others in need. Robert Frost in the poem “Mending Wall,” spoke about his neighbor and the “wall” that was always built between them, and how he wanted to mend it. Jill McDonough in her poem “Accident Mass,” spoke about the attitudes of people in Boston when accidents happen and how they attack each other verbally during the scenes. Frances E.W. Harper in “Learning to Read,” wrote in his poem about the importance of having an education and the difference it would make to have one. All the poems and the event surround the idea of being educated and reaching out to others; the idea of equality and that we are all human beings, not one is better than the other.
At the event Rosemary Thompson spoke about how education makes a difference in being able to recognize the people who are being trafficked. The huge difference it made when they trained police officers about the physical signs of those who are trafficked. The problem with the issue that people are not aware of what is going on around them today. The statistic that as she said “there are more human slaves now than ever in history.” She used the bible as a reference to showing that all humans are equal no is less or more than another. Religion is a strong value of hers and put the idea that when Jesus was being tortured how there were some around who did not know who he was or anything. Yet when he resurrected and came to those same people they were could not believe he was right in front of them the whole time. The incident related to human trafficking because the victim is usually bruised, emotionally abused, raped, and weak but yet we do not come to our sense to think that they have been trafficked. Kolvenbach relates to Thompson in that he believes the Jesuit education to be strong and believes that the mission is to help others in need. The Jesuit education also uses religion to cope and pray for others. As he states, “Our professors’ commitment to faith and justice entails a most significant shift in viewpoint and choice of values.” (Kolvenbach) Harper also speaks about how education makes a difference in life because it seems to have its own power as he says “Knowledge did’nt agree with slavery, Twould make us all too wise.” (Harper, 7-8) What suggests is that the “masters” would control the slaves by making sure they do not educate themselves because if they did, then it would bring them up the social scale and begin to equalize with the status of the master. The Bible was also valued in Harper, “And, I longed to read my Bible, For precious words it said.” (Harper, 29)
The issues with recognizing that everyone is equal is still an issue. In the poem by Jill McDonough, yelling at each other is like seeing who will win over the other. The poem speaks of the car accident and mentions the yelling beginning but things that stood out were “a little woman, whose first language was not English,” (McDonough, 6) and “Her little eyebrows pursed and worried. She was clearly in the wrong, I was enormous, and I’d been acting as if I’d like to hit her.” (McDonough, 30-34) These quotes show the demeaning of a person by appearance and how the person who did not speak English was seen as little. This relates with the event because it is about dignity being taken away from the person. The event also relates in that the people who are usually trafficked are those who are foreign and do not speak English because then the “master” can control and threaten them with deportation, rape them, and control their funds. The Jesuit education as Kolvenbach has mentioned is about helping one another in times of need, and not seeing difference between each other. Robert Frost in his poem “Mending Wall,” tries to mend the wall with his neighbor but his neighbor still lives traditionally and sees a need for the wall between them. “He is all pine and I am apple orchard. My apple trees will never get across And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him,” (Frost, 24-26) shows how in the poem Frost tries to show the neighbor that he means no harm, but the neighbor replies, “Good fences make good neighbors.” (Frost, 27) The neighbor sees the differences and does not want to associate with him (Frost). The relation between the event and the poems is the problem of equality.The relation between the events and the poems is that there is still the issue of not recognizing that we are all human beings and no one is better or superior than another. Education makes a difference in being aware of what is going on and preventing it. It allows an opportunity to grow and be open to others around you. The mission is to help those who are in need and reach out to make that difference in the world we live in.