Friday, October 30, 2009

Movie Review: Playground.

Where does child prostitution happen? Why does child prostitution happen? Is it a problem Americans have to worry about?

The majority of Americans would probably not like to think about child prostitution as an issue that we have to worry about; we would prefer to maintain the ideas that it happens in other countries, that the only people who have to worry about their children being kidnapped for exploitation are those who are poor or come from impoverished families. But, as the new documentary "The Playground" points out, not only are they wrong, but the mindset of cheerful ignorance helps fuel the robust domestic child prostitution trade.

"The Playground" demonstrates that children in every city are being forced into prostitution and pornography across the nation, from every class and racial demographic. It interviews law enforcement officers, social workers, victims of trafficking, committed sex offenders, and investigators and through their testimonies uncovers startling facts about the domestic child sex trade.

Children as young as 11 are being forced into the sex trade--being arrested for being part of a trade that was forced on them while the "john" that rapes them goes free. (Think about it: if she weren't a prostitute, her rapist would be deemed a pedophile and would be prosecuted as such.)

The Sex Offender registry is so bloated (in some states 6-year olds are being registered as sex offenders) that actual dangerous sex offenders AREN'T LISTED, and can get away with crimes.

By looking at tragic statistics, the viewer must re-examine their understanding of the American legal system, its foster care system, and the American culture--which various interviewees claimed promoted the child sex trade on account of its sexualization of women and children.

For more about the documentary, check out
For more about child sex trafficking, check out

Photo Credit: striatic on

1 comment:

Val said...

Thanks for writing this review! This was such a wonderful film. I really hope our campus groups take advantage of it and do some screenings. It's a fabulous resource.