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Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Tennessee's Modern Day Slavery

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. went through extreme challenges to bring revolutionary change for social justice. His goal was to unify all of America and instill values of love, tolerance, forgiveness, and reconciliations through a colorblind society. This holiday was not meant for one race, but all races to treat each other equally. It is a holiday to volunteer to help others and reassess how you are living your life.

A quote MLK cherished from the bible verse Mark 9:35, Jesus said to James and John,” whosoever will be great among you shall be the servant of all.” This message was the message he led his life for which was to love and serve humanity. This day is about equality for all and to have every American to have the same rights as the other.

I believe we have come a long way in our society since the 13th Amendment was officially adopted in 1865 stating, neither slavery nor voluntary servitude…shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction and since early 1960’s where social justice was fought to end segregation by MLK, however, there are still people out there who are struggling to have their equality.

I want to take this day to not only respect MLK as the fearless leader for humanity and for unity in America, but I want to shed light on an issue that still needs social justice. I am referring to the people who still do not have their freedom and who still are slaves in our country, the modern-day slaves, human trafficked people.

These Slaves are from any background, race, or age. They were promised to come to America for debt as high as $60,000 from people who promised them better lives or they are children groomed to know no other life or forced into slavery. Both instances made the market for sex trafficking a multimillion-dollar crime. It was just a few months ago near the Nashville area there were 22 men indicted. These slaves are forced into labor or sex to make money for their exploiters right in our own state.

This is happening in Tennessee and to our youth in Tennessee. In a report from 2016, more than 40 million people were estimated to be victims of modern day slavery, 25 million into labor and 15 million into a forced marriage where 71% were women and girls.

In Tennessee, a 2017 report had 54 human trafficking cases reported, 42 of which were sex trafficking. When we talk about freedom and equality, let us talk about our modern-day slaves and put efforts into stopping slavery in our home state of Tennessee. Find out how you can help end this slavery at

MLK, I Have a Dream Speech:

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