25A Vane Attempt

"Don't Need a Weatherman To Tell Which Way the Wind Blows" 

A Series of Innocuous Blogs for Vainglorious Edification.

The Color of Charity
January 23, 2008

In the French organization Zoe’s Arc we have a case of purported charity gone darkly, cynically wrong.  The organization, supposedly set up to help the victims of the Asian tsunami in 2004, took on a bleak, menacing cloak when it knowingly kidnapped 103 Chadian children and attempted to forcibly hijack them to France.  The eight French nationals convicted of human trafficking and kidnap claimed the children were Sudanese war orphans.  The facts proved they were lying.  Each of the children was a Chadian citizen and each had at least one living parent or guardian.  The children were bribed by the “charity” workers with candy and biscuits.  Their parents, bamboozled by promises of charity, encouraged the children to go with the white people, assuming they would be given opportunity and education.  Zoe’s Arc had sold rights to foster families for each of the children and demanded payment of thousands of dollars for the privilege to do so.  Sound like a human trafficking scam?  It was, and potentially far worse.  And it begs the question how often does child abduction under the color of “charity”  occur around the worlds?

The idea that one culture has the right to kidnap the children of another culture is not new.  The question arises over and again when the rights of parents are pitted against the rights of children.  But what we learn in the French kidnap case is the deep destructiveness that results from human abduction of any kind.  In a world that claims to revile pedophilia, where men and women of deep conviction demand the death penalty for those who prey upon children - we overlook kidnap and abduction with blithe disinterest.  The hard law and order boys would much rather wrestle a fellating priest into the electric chair than a man who steals children from poor parents and sells them to the highest bidder.  Police bristle with righteousness at the crime of a single pedophile yet ignore the suffering of thousands of children abducted each year by their own bickering parents.   Kidnapping rips children from the only stable setting they know.  Abducting a child from familial security and parental protection (however misappropriated)  unleashes trauma that is rarely spoken of, rarely treated, and rarely healed.   Trafficking in human beings, especially innocent children is just as heinous a crime as is raping a child.  The rape is physical and has the potential to physically heal.  The abduction (and trauma of rape) is psychological, and will traumatize the child for the remainder of its life.

If society wants to act with equanimity toward crimes against children - it is time to treat kidnap, abduction and human trafficking with the same revulsion as we do pedophilia.  It is one and the same.  There is little or no difference.  To pretend that there is only makes men look ignorant in the face of their own capacity to abuse.  In the summer of 1932 the United States Congress passed a law declaring the crime of kidnapping a Federal offense punishable by the death penalty.  In the years since we have let lapse the outrage that the Lindbergh case caused.  We look today, witnessed by the intervention of French President Sarkozy in releasing the Zoe’s Ark kidnappers, upon this crime as if it were a mere misdemeanor.  We assuage our guilt in the thought that these were “charity” workers trying to improve the lives of war torn children.  They were nothing of the sort.  These “charity” workers should be seen in no different light than the pedophile who cuts the fingers off children’s hands.  They should be treated with the same revulsion as the village priest found on his knees in front of the alter boy.  Men and women operating under the guise of charitable cause to abduct and traffic in children should be offered no less a penalty than the kidnapper who buries a child in a box and refuses to reveal its whereabouts.  They are one in the same.  They are crimes of extreme psychological trauma.  They destroy the lives of children and the families they are abducted from.  If we have no mercy for the pedophile - there should be none for the kidnapper.  They are each an unholy and vile abomination that should be eradicated from the worlds of the living.  And equally from the worlds of the dead.


What draws uncomfortable silence from the guardians, angels and mortals in this discussion is the knowledge that “taking” any thing, person or idea, without transparent benefit to humanity and without just compensation - is wholly and unarguably wrong.  Not just morally and ethically wrong - but legally and conscionably wrong.  Beyond that, speaking to the divine nature of evolved life, we know that to capture, subdue and remove from their natural habitat any sentient being, is a divine abomination.  Those who perpetrate such actions do so with the full knowledge and understanding that they are in defiance of universal benevolence - that which many of faith call… God.