Today, you may have notice that Twitter and Facebook were a little quieter than usual. Part of the reason was a “social media blackout” to create awareness for human trafficking and slavery that exist in the world today. @enditmovement is the official twitter handle of the day- which received a big boost from the Passion Conference earlier this year. Most estimates I’ve read have around 27 million people are trafficked or in slavery—and this kind of oppression is worse today than at the height of legal slavery.
I am opposed to human trafficking and slave trade at all levels. It’s abhorrent that this continues to exist in our world. Scriptures are clear in Genesis that every human being is created in the image of God- and has divine worth. How can we “buy/sell/trade” another human made in the image of our Creator?
I do, however, question social media activism and wonder if it is sometimes a shortcut to really getting involved. It’s easier to click “like” on a Facebook page or RT something on Twitter to raise awareness- it’s another thing to actually send funds or give of your time and talent to get along. What would happen if everyone who went silent today (or took part in other campaigns) wrote their government representatives; or financially supported a church or non-profit working in this area; or used their talents to join a non-profit working to end slavery?
Perhaps, for some, it is the start of a process. By “liking” or supporting a cause on Facebook or Twitter- it does put it into a frame of thinking about the topic. We have awareness; a seed has been planted. Some of those seeds, when fed a healthy dose of passion creates opportunities for you and I to get involved.
I applaud the efforts of @enditmovement and those who went silent today. We, especially those of us who call ourselves “Followers of Jesus Christ,” should be in it to end it. I encourage each of us to prayerfully consider how God is calling us to go beyond “liking” or “retweeting” a campaign to using our God-given gifts in talents to, “preach good news to the poor, proclaim freedom to the captives, recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed and to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Were you “in it to end it” today? How has social media given you a platform to raise awareness? How are you being led to go beyond “likes” and “retweets” to getting more fully involved?