While accepting an honor at Variety’s, Power of Women: New York event, Blake Lively gave an emotional and powerful speech about the horrors of child pornography and the amazing work being done by the Child Rescue Coalition to fight back.
And yes, Blake Lively is now one of my heroes!
It’s quite amazing to see a celebrity use their status to join a cause and try to make a difference in the world. And for Lively to get up in front of an audience to talk about such an emotional, difficult, and painful topic that people need to hear despite how difficult and uncomfortable it is to hear, is nothing short of heroic.
Here is the video:
It’s such an overwhelmingly heartbreaking topic that must be stopped.
I chose to briefly write about her speech in hopes to continue the message in at least some small way.
Please visit the Child Rescue Coalition website today to learn more about this horror and how you can help.
If you skimmed some of the video and missed what they do, the Child Rescue Coalition partners with law enforcement around the world to rescue and protect children from sexual exploitation.
To date, the Child Rescue Coalition has played a part in rescuing 2,084 children and 9,062 arrest of predators.
Approximately 300,000 children are abused every year in just the US. They need your help!
Here are more statistics from their website:
“Over the course of their lifetime, 28 percent of U.S. youths ages 14 to 17 will have been sexually victimized.”
“Twenty percent of adult females recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident.”
“Up to 10 percent of adult males recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident.”
“Research shows that as many as 85% of online offenders are already hands-on offenders of children in real life.”
This nightmare has to stop. And it needs warriors to help fight the battle.
What can I do?
It starts at home.
Your kids are smarter than you think. And far more vulnerable than you think.
You can’t trust what they may find on the internet – whether intentional or not.
And much more than that, you cannot trust who they might be talking to on the internet.
Educating your kids on the dangers of the internet and when they’re ready, the dangers of pornography, is more important than ever before.
They need to know how to protect their mind and their hearts. They rely on you to help them.
If you can’t monitor their computer use, then utilize software such as Net Nanny, the award-winning internet monitoring software. Net Nanny filters out harmful content & other internet dangers to help protect you and your children.
It’s ridiculous that this isn’t done automatically by internet service providers. But since it isn’t, it’s up to you.
“Pornography, cyber bullies, and online predators make the internet a dangerous place for young minds. Protect your family! Take control with Net Nanny — the best child protection software available.”
Net Nanny keeps pornography from appearing, masks profanity, let’s you set time limits on internet usage, and can send alerts and reports.
Donate to the Child Rescue Coalition. You can help expand law enforcement utilization, expand education and awareness for parents, and expand the technological capabilities necessary to track and stop predators.
Visit the Fight the New Drug Website to learn more about how harmful pornography is. Educate yourself. Educate your children. Educate others.
Predators are not born predators. Pornography corrupts and destroys minds and hearts. Learn more and join the fight.
Below is a transcript of the video. Read it. And read it again.
Thank you guys. Thank you, Salma. You are a role-model in every facet of your life. She’s the best momma and wife and leader and boss and producer and actress and I just want to be her every day. So thank you, Salma.
And thank you to Variety for not only honoring and acknowledging women but acknowledging the issues that we all need to be talking about. I’m just so grateful to be in the company of all of the women being honored here today.
I’m here today because I’m a momma and I have two baby girls – well they’re not babies, but I think they are – James and Ines. They are my world. I would do anything to protect them. I would literally die for them without a moments thought.
For those of you who have children, I think you know what I’m talking about. If you think of what you would do for your child, I don’t think there’s anything you wouldn’t ask of yourself.
It got me thinking, what is the value of a single child’s life? What is the value of a child’s life who isn’t our own? What is her little life worth or his little life worth?
The sexual exploitation of children is something that isn’t happening rarely. It’s not happening worlds away. It’s happening right here and right now.
To show you guys that, while I’m talking, there’s a map right here. If you look at this map, every time a dot shows up, that is someone that’s trading or viewing child pornography right now as we speak. That’s how prevalent this is.
I didn’t really know what child pornography was. We all sort of have an idea of it and I was afraid to ask, as a mother, because it would be very painful to hear.
I felt like I had to ask, though. And I feel like I have to share it with you.
It is disturbing and I want to warn you, but I feel it’s my responsibility to tell you because it is the truth.
I believe if we all knew this we would dedicate much more of ourselves to stopping it.
When I asked what child pornography entailed, yes, it’s nude images of boys and girls under the age of 18. But now because of high-speed internet, it’s also videos very prominently. Videos of kids. And by kids, I mean pre-pubescent – visibly pre-pubescent.
They make that distinction because of the internet. There’s so much content, these paedophile’s are desensitized. Because of that, the kids are getting younger and the content is getting that much more devastating.
When this law enforcement officer told me this, I asked him, “how young are the young kids he’s seeing?” He told me, “infants.”
I have a 6-month old baby. So I said, “what does that mean? What does an infant mean?” He said, “with the imbilical cord still attached.”
I know, it’s so devastating to hear this and I’m really sorry to share this, but I’m grateful that you are listening. Because this is actually happening and it’s important that we know this and that it resonates with us so that we think about this in our days and in our personal lives.
I asked them what happens in these videos. Unspeakable things happen and again, I’m going to speak about them because I feel like if these kids are experiencing this, the least that they deserve is for us to hear what is actually happening to them.
No, it’s not just touching. There is penetration. There is extreme torture and bondage. There is beastiality, which is having an animal penetrate the child or infant. There is incest.
They said you think of it, anything you could think of, it’s out there and it’s being traded.
It’s 30 to 50 million files a day being traded that we know of.
You can see what’s happening right now.
This is happening to any child and every child. Ninety percent of children know their abusers. Our children are at risk. You may know this person. It may be a doctor, it may be a coach. I thought that people that were working with children were people that wanted to protect them, but often times it’s people who have this purpencity for wanting to lure children. They find a profession that gives them access to children and lots of them.
Ideal victims are young children because they can’t speak up and they don’t make great witnesses if they do. Only 10% of children actually do speak up once they’ve been abused.
What’s incredible about the Child Rescue Coalition is that they’re proactive. They don’t wait for these children to speak up. They can identify these pedofiles. They can see the IP address that’s trading this child pornography. There’s no privacy issues. There’s no big brothering. They see the IP address of who’s trading these files and they give that to law enforcement.
The trading of these files is a felony. Law enforcement can knock on that person’s door and see if that person has access to a child.
The average abuser abuses between 50 and 100 children in their lifetime – per person, per abuser.
The average person that views child pornography, between 55 and 90% of people viewing it are actually hands-on abusers or will become abusers.
You think that sounds like a lot, 50 to 100, maybe that’s unrealistic, but the kids age out of the age that they stay silent or they age out of the sexual preference of the predator.
I was told the story of an oncologist, a pediatric oncologist, who was raping his children with cancer by the hundreds. There was a nurse that was working with children with mental and physical disabilities. When he was caught, they asked him how many children he abused. He looked outside the window at the snow and said, “how many snowflakes are there outside?”
This is so prevelant. I want you to know this and I want it to resonate with you.
I want you to see that the Child Rescue Coalition, in just three years, has found 9,000 predators so far.
They have saved 2,000 children.
Yes, they need donations, that’s great, because they can continue to make this tool free for law enforcement, but they also really need introductions. Which is why I’ve been talking for way too long and I’m very aware of that and I’m sorry. But you are all very important and well-connected people, so this is my time to tell you: they need introductions.
They need introductions to big companies. For example, let’s say, because they have the IP address of all these predators, they could give the IP address over to care.com or uber and if that person is filing for an application to work at this company to become a nanny or a driver, they’re immediately rejected because they’ve traded child pornography.
If Comcast wants to receive their list of IP addresses, or any big internet service provider, they can block that content from being shared because they know what those files are.
There are no privacy issues. They just block that illegal content.
So why the hell are we not doing this?! It makes no sense!
We have to make these introductions.
We have to help these kids.
It doesn’t infringe on anything illegally, so I just encourage you, table 17, we have flyers with a list of companies that need introductions.
Thank you to Carly Yoost, who is here, the founder and CEO of the Child Rescue Coalition. She is the real hero along with everybody at the Coalition. Bill Wiltsy, thank you to everybody protecting our children. They are the real heroes.
Thank you to all of you who spent your afternoon, sitting here listening to all of us talk about these things that are really painful.
I feel really grateful to have the opportunity to speak for the people that aren’t able to speak for themselves. I know that all of us feel that way today.
Thank you for valuing everyone’s life – for these children’s lives.