It seems to me that Haiti would be far better off with a thousand Sislbys running around than a thousand Bill Clintons. If you know that there are 225,000 slaves in Haiti, that means you probably know where many of them are. The failure then is a government (and a society) that obviously tolerates slavery. I am sure the arrests were a godsend to the government who could claim to be doing something about child trafficking. The same government which is obviously turning a blind eye to real traffickers.
It is wonderful to them, I am sure that the arrests were of the Left’s favorite Bete Noir, white evangelical Baptists! Those same people who want a Theocracy in the good old USA. What better way to deflect criticism of the govt than this media side show aided and abetted by the NGO crowd like your guest author who want to hold some kind of monopoly on the whole do gooder business.
The one thing I do know is that if those kids had left Haiti, none of them would have been sex slaves. They would have been adopted into American homes and their families would have ecstatic at the outcome. As they got US citizenship they might have brought their families here. I am sure that is what their parents had in mind. But no, as usual you know best. Poor people are too stupid to know their own interests.
I makes me continually happy to see those who address the issues with child exploitation, as Laura Silsby has so obviously tried to do. However, in regard to your posting, I would like to point out a few things and comment on them.
“Predictably, the fool’s errand of the Baptist missionaries from Idaho has instead consumed the post-earthquake news cycle.”
I have to disagree that this was a fool’s errand. Laura Silsby knew EXACTLY what she was doing, she just failed to plan it well. If you remember the WSJ article a couple weeks ago stating that Silsby, prior to the Haiti debacle, had big plans to open up a “runaway home” in Kuna, ID. My personal experience and research tell me that Silsby got the idea for this place from some very well-known fundamental preachers, or at the very least one of their affiliates.
Totally setting the abuse topic aside, it needs to be noticed how much MONEY has been and continues to be made by those running unlicensed, “faith-based” church supported children’s homes here in the UNITED STATES! The exploitation of children and teens by these places is RAMPANT. All these directors have to do is load the kids on a bus, and travel to different churches begging for money so they can continue doing “God’s” work.
This post has confirmed my suspicions that slavery is still rampant in contemporary settings, rich or poor. It also encourages me to continue to develop my desire to be an effective and caring foreign policy advisor, either for government or independent. I am looking forward to helping other people to see as you have done here.
Thanks Walter and Ben.
PS Walter: I have enjoyed reading your books for University. (am an adult student  embarking on a new career.)
Your problem is that, like so many other liberals, you see everything from a systemic viewpoint. You say that giving a handful of children a chance at a decent life is a fool’s errand because it leaves Haiti without a systemic remedy to the problem. We have heard the same argument with regard to school choice (giving a few children a chance to escape weakens the school system), abortion (abortion will go away when the system supports mothers) and other issues and, frankly, we are sick of it.
People like you are busy inventing new societies. The Silsby’s, with a more realistic and modest self-regard, just want to help someone in need.
“it (1 billion in funds ed) will go a long way toward recovery if invested in the right way.”
Yes and if I had superpowers I could just fly over there and fix everything myself. However I don’t and the funds almost assuredly won’t be spent in the “right way” unless by “right way” you mean spread out among the corrupt government which exists for the sole purpose of protecting the 1% of the Haitian population that doesn’t live in abject poverty. So lets be honest, the odd’s of Haiti not being a third world hellhole 50 years from now are slim and approaching none even if the world gives them the $20 or $30 billion the UN and NGO dogooder network think they’ll need to “rebuild”. I’m sure the Presidential Palace will be much nicer but I doubt the average Haitian will notice much difference.
In addition I found the scorn you heaped on the missionaries for not respecting Haitian laws to be particularly amusing. Certainly Haitian law and government has done a wonderful job of protecting the innocent and providing a stable civil society. So by all means lets work within the unbelievably corrupt and incompetent Haitian “government” to save the children. It will probably only cost us about $100,000 per child saved and thousands will die or be sold into slavery while we try to figure out who to bribe next but hey at least we wouldn’t have shown disrespect for the haitian legal system. In contrast buying children off the street for $50 from the monsters who sell them actually kind of sounds like a decent way to cut through the red tape. And we could keep a list of the slavers and reward them with a bullet to the head at some later date.
It won’t solve all of Haiti’s problems but I’ll bet the kids that get out of that hellhole and get to go live in America will probably be pretty happy about it.