Slavery in America: A Conversation with International Justice Mission

In honor of National Human Trafficking Awareness Month, this is a repost of an interview held with International Justice MIssion staff member Lauren Johnson in early 2010. IJM currently is one of the world leaders in combatting slavery today. 

 

Last month I visited the International Justice Mission headquarters, not far from the Pentagon and just outside our nation’s capitol.  It was a beautiful day. The air was crisp and cool and the ground layered with the remnants of the recent snow storm.

Inside IJM headquarters - aka HQ -, you’ll find a quant, but inspirational photo gallery. The walls are lined with telling photographs of beautiful people who are part of IJM’s work abroad. Each face on each photo tells a different story of survival, of redemption and of justice at work.

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The L.A. “Riots” 20 Years Later: Toward A Theology of Action by Any Means.

Twenty years ago one of the largest insurrections occurred in Los Angeles California. I was 18, angry from the tirade of police brutality, enraged from a lifetime of racism growing up in Texas, prepared to give my life for justice, and in shock to the “not guilty” verdict just handed to me on the closed circuit television in my senior English class. I could almost literally see the world around me turn red. I was infuriated that, once again, White’s would “win” and Blacks—for that matter all ethnic minorities—would have to take a backseat, yet again. The anger rose, filled the room, others looked around, and in an almost joint accord we—the student body—decided to go out and discuss this issue of racism in a more “public” setting. One by one, each of the classrooms began to empty out as word of the verdict spread. My friend Larry pulls out an American flag and begins to burn it. My other friend Tyrone picks up a trash can and throws it toward the quad. Another friend of mine begins to yell, “No justice, no peace!” Friends of mine are visibly crying. And the mood of everyone is that “How much longer can we take this?” I corralled several friends of mine; we packed up heavy weaponry, our bullet proof vest, and made our way down into South Central Los Angeles to physically manifest our disgust, not just with the not-guilty verdict, but with the continued mistreatment of ethnic minorities in American history.
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