All across social media Tuesday, people are showing their support for “Shine a Light on Slavery Day,” which is being promoted by Louie Giglio's End It Movement.
“You know it. We know it. As a country, we've officially known it since 1863. But here's something you might not know—slavery still exists,” the movement's website says. “We want every man, woman and child to know that there are 27 million men, women and children, just like them, living in the shadows. In brothels. In factories. In quarries. Working as slaves. In 161 countries. Including our own. We are here to shine a light on slavery. No more bondage. No more sex trafficking. No more child laborers. No more, starting now.”
The coalition of seven nonprofit organizations is united in exposing the reality that there are more people trapped in slavery around the world today than at any other time in history. The movement, which officially launched Feb. 1 with a full-page ad in USA Today, is asking Americans to draw a red X on their hands Tuesday to represent the 27 million people enslaved around the world and share it via social media. Other suggestions include wearing a red X on your clothes, wearing promotional gear and planning an event.
“Most people think slavery ended with the Civil War, but the truth is that slavery is still very much a part of our present day,” said Bryson Vogeltanz, chief steward of End It. “By drawing the red X on our hands and sharing it virally using the hashtag, #enditmovement, we can help shine a light on slavery across this nation. Awareness is not the only step to ending this global problem, but it is the first.”
Many well-known Christian leaders have shown their support for the End It Movement on Twitter, including Joel Osteen, Mark Driscoll, Matt Chandler and Beth Moore.
The End It Movement has also received support from performer Nick Cannon, superstar Carrie Underwood, NFL quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, NBA player Kyle Korver and the 2011 Daytona 500 champion, Trevor Bayne. Cannon, Hasselbeck and Bayne all appeared in PSAs for Shine a Light on Slavery Day.
“It's not any one person or organization that's going to solve this. It's every one of us, doing what we can, at the level of influence we have, to not only shine a light on slavery, but to end it,” Giglio told CNN. He added that Jesus Christ was the “the ultimate abolitionist, the original abolitionist,” which serves as an inspiration for the world in the fight against slavery.