The problem of child sexual abuse and sex trafficking is very real and widespread in the United States. It is not something that most people think about on a daily basis. This is especially true when it comes to sex trafficking because it is so difficult to believe that it could happen in a modern country like America. It does, however, and children are often the victims of the sick criminal underground. Law enforcement has been making headway into the criminal sex trafficking trade over the last few decades. Many of the tactics and strategies that are used by the criminals are now easily identified by law enforcement and known to some people in the public. This is helping to reduce the problem slowly.
A mother named Nicole recently got a scare involving pedophiles and child sex trafficking. She had traveled to Syracuse, New York with her two young children. They were going to see a car show called the Monster Jam. It was intended to be a lighthearted and fun day for the family. Everything went fine during the show and the family started to leave at the end of the day. Nicole decided to stop at a vendor on the way out of the arena. The vendor was selling stuffed monster trucks for kids. The mother got a pink stuffed truck for her 2-year-old daughter as a reminder of the event.
The stuffed truck looked perfectly harmless. It had some symbols on top like a heart and a fist. Nicole thought nothing of it and went home with the kids. Her sister came over some time later and saw the toy and the symbols on top. She remembered an episode of “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” that talked about one of the symbols on the toy truck. The one of interest was a stylized heart with a smaller heart in the center. The crime show on television described that exact symbol as being for “girl lovers” also known as pedophiles. She immediately informed Nicole about what the symbol might mean…
It appears toys that contain the double heart symbol are given to young girls as a sign to other pedophiles that the child is ready to be abducted and entered into the sex trafficking trade. Any pedophile who saw a young girl with the toy might think that. This upset Nicole greatly since she thought her daughter might be at risk. She got rid of the toy immediately. She also contacted local authorities about it. The company that makes the toy in Tampa Bay did not realize what the symbol meant. They immediately recalled and stopped selling the toy once the meaning was discovered. It is not clear how the symbol came to be a part of the design in the first place.
Not everyone is as upset about this as Nicole is. If you look at the double heart symbol, then you will notice that it has appeared in many places throughout the country without any association to pedophiles or sex trafficking. It looks like a relatively harmless heart shape. There is also some doubt as to whether the symbol means what certain law enforcement officials think. The information might be old, outdated or simply incorrect. This has resulted in some people saying that Nicole overreacted to nothing more than a small heart shape on top of a stuffed toy.
Nicole has taken action because it is better to be safe than sorry when it comes to protecting your children. The toys are now being redesigned without that specific heart symbol on the top. Although no one was harmed, this is just a reminder that there are some very sick and dangerous people out there intent on hurting children.