It’s 2014 and lets just say over the past ten years 100,000 children were really trafficked every year. That’s one million children since 2004. According to the most recent census data the population of the United States is somewhere around 317,297,938. One million children (we are counting everyone under 18 as a child) might seem like a small number against 300 plus million for the total population and it kind of is. However, saying that they were all trafficked creates a slightly different picture. Imagine if each year 100,000 was a verified minimum number of children trafficked, we are not talking children reported missing, rather some verification came to light that each one of them was really trafficked.
I find it difficult to believe that we as country would stand by after a single official verified announcement came through stating for sure 100,000 children were trafficked in a given year. I believe it would only take one announcement and the country at large would demand action to prevent something of this scale from occurring in the coming years. The point being if the united states was truly serious about stopping all the things we citizens claim to care about; the government, private companies, and the public would be exhausting all possible efforts to resolve our issues in a fairly speedy fashion.
The keys to true crime prevention are just that, prevention. To prevent something is to act before it can occur. Catching people after crimes are committed does not really stop new crimes from being committed by another individual or group of individuals. Those who have ill intent won’t be deterred by new laws or additions to existing laws making them stricter. If any entity has a serious interest in stopping terrible things from happening, they will seek ways to lead people away from illegal activity before those individuals ever consider such activity in the first place. For example if every possible future gang member in a community is occupied elsewhere, recruitment will suffer. If the efforts to keep potential gang members out of reach from gangs are good enough, gang presence in a community will eventually dwindle. Additionally other efforts would target current gang members to help them improve their lives and move away from gang involvement. This double approach of targeting both sides of a problem by reaching out to potential new sources and targeting current sources could be applied to many different types of illegal activity.