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Sally Richardson NOT For Sale... Ever. Again
The whole idea of being driven in life is connected with the idea of causality, of life moving under the power of the past. And that is so ingrained in our common sense that it’s very difficult to get rid of it. A thing constructed can only be loved after its constructed, but a thing created is loved before it exits. - Charles Dickens, Authentically Pivot
By Simon E. Bois, Florida Night Train
January is “Human Trafficking Awareness Month”. Meet Sally. She is an avid motorcycle enthusiast and an icon representing courage in the communities and people she touches by advocating against human trafficking and such crimes. She is also a seasoned professional model who you probably have seen before. Sally is a true warrior. Her story and what she went through is gut-wrenching. I am privileged to call her a friend. Sally is mother to six children (7 if you count “Dyna” her Yorkie) and grandmother of two. She is currently Co-Director of “Fighting Against Trafficking Organization”.
Sally also strongly focuses on her practice as a consultant, championing the cause of victims' rights especially those of sexual crimes, domestic abuse and violence against women and children.
Sally recently won a supreme court case in South Dakota, making it case law across the country, thus giving victims of abuse who are able to prove they have long suffered and currently still suffer from their abuse, the ability to take their perpetrator to civil court for jury trial and pursue punitive damages. If you voted in the last election, one of the issues to vote on your ballot was a direct result of Sally’s hard work on behalf of victims nationwide.
Sally’s expertise has been utilized by legislators throughout the Midwest to help pass new and tougher sex trafficking legislation. She is a sought-after speaker and has successfully contributed to organizations such as; Creighton University’s Human Trafficking Initiative, Women’s Fund, NHTTF Thriver Committee, National Survivor Network, and the Polaris Project.
In Sally’s own words:
“It seems that the value of someone’s pain depends on the size of their bank account, or that of who caused your pain. Many Survivors of human sex trafficking will never get the chance for justice.
Here are some terms you want to get familiar with:
Sexual Exploitation: Taking advantage of sexuality and attractiveness of a person to make a personal gain or profit. It is the abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust for sexual purposes.
Sexual Assault: Refers to an assault of a sexual nature on another person. It can include a wide range of unwanted sexual contact such as rape, forced vaginal, anal or oral penetration, forced sexual intercourse, inappropriate touching, forced kissing, child molestation, exhibitionism, voyeurism, obscene phone calls, torture of a victim in a sexual manner, etc.
Sexual Abuse: Aggravated sexual assault is a felony sexual offense governed by state laws, which vary by state. It is typically defined as a sexual assault that maims, wounds, or disfigures the victim, or involves a victim who is physically or mentally incapacitated. It may also be defined to include a sexual assault that is aided or abetted by another person, occurs during commission of another crime, or involves use of a deadly weapon.
Sexual Harassment: Occurs when a person is subject to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature to such an extent that it alters the conditions of the person’s employment and creates an abusive working environment. Sexual harassment may include touching, feeling, groping and/or repeated unpleasant, degrading and/or sexist remarks directed toward an employee, implying that employment status, promotion or favorable treatment depends upon the employee’s assent. Pornography displayed in the workplace or emailed to coworkers may also constitute sexual harassment.
No matter what name you give it, it just does not discriminate. It does not see gender, age, beauty, religion, social status, or financial background. It does not care where you’ve been or where you’re going, or if you are in good health or not.
This egregious tragedy happens to many on an hourly basis. The common theme is that sexual abuse is present in conducting business to make a profit. Harvey Weinstein did this and so do Traffickers/Pimps. Both predators/perpetrators, at the time of the occurrences were seeking to gratify no one but themselves i.e.;
1) sexual gratification
3) financial gain
The sexual abuse Weinstein’s Victims felt as well as trafficking victims was and is, they were all made to feel trapped, vulnerable and all were exploited. I have no doubt that both Weinstein’s and Trafficked Victims/Survivors had or still feel the ripples of the deep oceanic tides of this heinous act that was forced upon all. What comes to mind is – as a trafficked victim myself I know that my safety was and is still a concern for me. That during the time of occurrence, I was not in control of my situation any more than the those who suffered at Weinstein’s hands. Both perpetrators used their position to commit sexual torture by using manipulation, coercion, and force – to obtain and gain from their victims.
Sadly, this Weinstein situation, has brought to light one very important issue I myself am struggling with and that is: no matter how many experts a task force can bring together or a law enforcement agency, they will never have the insight survivors have. I personally am having great difficulty getting this across in my own community task force. Again, proving that although predators all share many
characteristics the reasons behind why they commit this never-ending hideous crime greatly differ and so do the visual aspects.
As far as victims go – pain is pain and what we all suffered is horrifying to say the least. However, there are some differences between Weinstein’s Victims and those who are Trafficked. Weinstein’s Victims have received attention from every aspect starting with the investigation to possibly the courts and great financial compensation.
Trafficked victims receive little to no attention if you are an adult victim. If you’re a minor, you may get about 15 minutes of fame so to speak. As far as any financial compensation, most if not all trafficked victims receive absolutely nothing. With these two most important issues, it leaves many trafficked victims, what they deem reasons they either stay or go back to their traffickers. Most important is, all or most of us victims had our voice and freedom violently taken away.
All victims of sexual predators are valuable. They deserve a voice and the media should not discriminate on what is going to get them ratings.”
That said, there is a growing number of organizations and individuals rallying alongside Sally. Among several others for example, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally organizers as well as the city of Sturgis teamed-up with Sally’s organization and conducted a charity ride called “FAST Ride” which stands for “Fight Against Sex Trafficking”. In their Memorandum of Understanding the organizers state; “We recognize that trafficking doesn’t happen because of events like Sturgis. It happens because demand exists wherever there are large gatherings of people, and traffickers are more than willing to leverage any event to exploit vulnerable individuals for financial gain. But we also recognize that the biker community in general is filled with good, compassionate men and women who could be inspired and engaged in combatting this evil; and this is the opportunity we hope to capitalize on with the Sturgis F.A.S.T. Ride 2019”. As it turns out, the event successfully raised several thousands of dollars in support of Sally’s cause.
Fighting Against Trafficking (www.fightingagainsttrafficking.org ) is a SD-based nonprofit organization led by survivor-leader Sally Richardson and Senator Lynne Hix-DiSanto. There are multiple well-intentioned organizations fighting against human trafficking in the nation. All effective in their own merit to various degrees.
Sally so far has grown to nationally champion advocating against human trafficking and related crimes. Her testimonial has made a direct impact triggering real tangible legislative changes further protecting victims.
Sally is moving mountains by the power of her past. She has become a warrior. She was born a warrior. Dare I say a warrior “predestined” or “created” therefore truly “loved before she existed” (as Charles Dickens would say) and, designed for a fight only she could fight. She deserves to be heard. Her journey forces us all to see the undeniable reality that the value of human worth is indispensable rather than disposable.
Sally is scheduled to visit Florida in 2020. We should all look forward to seeing her or if not at least support her cause.
To contact Night Train: www.facebook.com/FloridaNightTrain
ABOUT “NIGHT TRAIN”
Night Train has been published since 2000 in both Canada as well as USA featuring columns about lifestyles and celebrities such as Ted Nugent, Bill Davidson Jr. (Harley Davidson), Danica Patrick, Jesse James (West Coast Choppers), Paul Teutul Sr. (Orange County Choppers), Billy Lane (Choppers Inc.), Paul Cox (Indian Larry), Mondo (Denvers Choppers) etc… HOG Magazine, Born to Ride Magazine and Full Throttle Magazine, NSAEN.com and now Florida Women Magazine are a few of the publications Night Train has published in. Night Train invites you to connect on www.facebook.com/FloridaNightTrain. Night Train also reproduces and creates fine art using metals www.facebook.com/tattooedsteelllc. Night Train is also proud father of three children; Trinity, Jade and Eric.