03 February 2014
I'll warn you up front that this is not a book you will be able to read quickly, nor should you try to read it quickly. You should let each story and statistic sink into your soul. In the first chapter you will encounter three stories: 1) Yuri's Story, 2) Mariamma's Story, and 3) Laura's Story. Each one is from a different part of the world. You'll be transported to Latin America, South Asia, and East Africa to learn about the devastating reality of what women and young girls face every day in developing nations. Millions have experienced the same trauma that these people have been through. They are representatives, and their stories are true. It will be hard for you to read. It made me angry to hear how easy it is for the powerful to use their wealth and influence to oppress others.
The prevalence of violence against young women is so great that we have all been affected by it. Whether you're familiar with the story of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Taken, or even one of the latest episodes of Downton Abbey, you know that our global society is beginning to tell these types of stories and expose the kind of evil men who carry out violent sexual crimes against women and young girls.
The first chapter of The Locust Effect will lead you into a world that is often easy to look away from because of how painful it is to engage. It took me a while to finish because I couldn't take in all the suffering at once. Each story and the accompanying statistics will leave you with sadness. There is, however, an underlying sense of hope that our knowledge of these things positions us to respond.
What are we missing? We're missing how big the problem of violence is as both a cause of poverty, and one of the main factors that keeps people in poverty.
31 January 2014
Nearly a billion people in the world live in fear that the rest of us may never experience. The threat of violence is one of the biggest concerns of the poor, and one of the biggest hindrances to their ability to thrive. Here is a quick glance at the numbers.
28 January 2014
As I read the first chapter of the book and learned the stories of mostly women and girls who suffered violence at the hands of oppressors in cities throughout the world, I couldn't help but be reminded of the old Proverb that says, "Abundant food is in the fallow ground of the poor, but it is swept away by injustice" (Prov. 13:23, NASB). The problem is not only a lack of food, but the constant fear of someone who will come and take your farm or the food that someone freely gave you. The problem is not only a lack of education for girls, but that girls are afraid to go to school even when it is available for them, because of the possibility that they will be abducted and raped on their way to or from school (or even at school!). The problem is not only a lack of jobs or skills, but that business owners use their businesses to enslave people and intimidate them by causing fear and never providing a living wage. The problem is bigger than you think, and at the same time, there is much we can actually do.
I'm part of the launch team for The Locust Effect. I've received an advance copy to read and review in the hopes that we can get this book onto the bestseller list to bring awareness to the problem of everyday violence against the poor. I'm asking you to buy the book and sign the petition with the incentive of knowing that a generous friend of International Justice Mission has offered to give an additional $20 for every book purchased during Feb. 3-7. I'll do my best to summarize, give highlights, and express my thoughts and feelings as I read through each of the following chapters:
- Chapter 1: What Are We Missing?
- Chapter 2: The Hidden Crisis at History's Inflection Point
- Chapter 3: The Locust Effect
- Chapter 4: "No One's Driven That Truck In Decades"
- Chapter 5: The Emperor Has No Clothes - At All
- Chapter 6: A Dream Devastated
- Chapter 7: Colonial Legacies And A Failure That Makes Sense
- Chapter 8: Private Justice And Public Awareness
- Chapter 9: You Get What You Pat For
- Chapter 10: It's Been Done Before
- Chapter 11: Demonstration Projects Of Hope
21 January 2014
No doubt you are all familiar with the infamous burning of the library at Alexandria in 48 B.C. when the world lost 500,000 scrolls, but what about the destruction of German libraries in WWII when we lost over 10.5 million volumes. You may not have even known about all that was lost from the Iraq National Library in 2003, or the 20,000 manuscripts lost in the Ahmed Baba Library last year in Timbuktu. Here's an interesting infographic I found at Global Data Vault, highlighting Information Destruction Through History.
Check out the larger version of this infographic at Global Data Vault.