Yesterday, Deadline reported that NBC/Universal had purchased an option for a possible half-hour sitcom based on a web series called Mail Order Famiy. The series, which is co-created by the same creators of Superstore (Ruben Fleischer and David Bernad), follows the story of a recently widowed man who purchases a mail-order bride from the Phillipines to help him care for his two preteen daughters; it is loosely based on Superstore writer-producer Jackie Clarke’s childhood.
I had a chance to view the Vimeo of the Mail Order Bride webseries before it was removed from the public domain. It is exactly as racist, sexist, demeaning and offensive as you can imagine, and possibly worse than you could imagine. It’s also just plain terrible.
The idea of turning this series into sitcom is a horrible idea. Human trafficking is not funny.
By Guest Contributor: Brian Kent
Most readers are likely aware that human and sex trafficking is a serious problem in countries such as Thailand and India. In fact, Asian women are the most trafficked group worldwide. But, readers may not know that human and sex trafficking of Asian women is a large problem here in the United States, as well. While abuse lawyers like those at AbuseGuardian.com can help victims of human and sex trafficking take legal action against their captors, trafficking is an issue that has sadly gone widely unnoticed in America.
70% of human trafficking victims worldwide are girls or adult women. Asians and Pacific Islanders (API) are disproportionately trafficked into sex work in America. Although APIs represent roughly 6% of Americans, nearly half of trafficked people into America are API, making APIs the second largest group of human trafficking victims in the Americas, and the largest group of people trafficked into the region. According to a 2004 U.S. Department of Justice report, 7,800 Asians and Pacific Islanders were trafficked into America out of an estimated 14,500-17,500 trafficked people. More recent reports from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime show that more than 1 in 3 human trafficking victims in Northern and Central America originated from East Asia, South Asia or the Pacific Islands, and most of them are trafficked to the United States or Canada.
Last week, the Nobel committee announced that this year’s Nobel Peace Prize would be jointly awarded to two powerful activists within the Asian diaspora for “their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.”
17-year-old Pakistani education justice activist Malala Yousafzai skyrocketed to global fame for speaking out against the Taliban for their policies banning education for girls throughout her native Swat Valley, an area in the northwest region of Pakistan; her activism for the right of girls to have access to educational opportunities prompted an assassination attempt in 2012 that nearly claimed her life. Yousafzai (note: I use Yousafzai’s last name because female activists are often infantalized and dismissed by media coverage that selectively uses first names to refer to women where they do not for men) survived a gunshot to the head. Yet, her advocacy was undeterred and she has since become, quite legitimately, the face of female educational justice around the world. With last week’s announcement, Yousafzai becomes the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in history.
Kailash Satyarthi is a child rights advocate who founded Bachpan Bachao Andalan, a non-profit organization that focuses on child labour and human trafficking throughout South Asia. BBA organized the world’s largest campaign against child labour in 1998 in the form of its Global March Against Child Labour, and estimates that through its direct action has rescued over 80,000 children from bondage since the group’s founding in 1980.