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For many people, the image that comes to mind when they hear, the word slavery is the Transatlantic Slave Trade. I thought of the buying and selling of people, their shipment from one continent to another and the abolition of the trade in the early 1800s. But even if one knew nothing about the slave trade, it is something one thinks of as part of our history rather than our present. Yet the reality is, slavery continues today. After reading Francis Bok "Escape From Slavery: The True Story of My Ten Years in Captivity – and My Journey to Freedom in America," I realized slavery is not ancient history. Slavery is still an issue all over the world. This book is so descriptive that it made me care about the issue, and it made me want to do something to help. This book not only informed me about this issue but it also helped me as a person. It made me want to help others and a stronger person.
In Sudan, Africa's biggest country, chattel slavery is making a comeback, Arab militias, armed by the government, has been raiding African villages, shooting the men and enslaving the women and children. These people are kept as personal property or taken north and sold. This was the case of Francis Bok. In his autobiography Francis Bok told the story of his life and how they captured him in a raid at the age of seven. An Arab family enslaved him for ten years and Bok escaped in 1996, only to be enslaved by local police officers for two months. An Arab truck driver helped him flee to Khartoum, where security forces arrested and jailed him for seven months. He fled to Cairo when he was released, and in 1999 the United Nations helped him move to North Dakota. Bok has since addressed many members of Congress about the enslaved Sudanese people. He was the first escaped slave to testify before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in 2000. Now He works for an anti-slavery group. He said, “ I will not rest until I see my people free.”
Finding this out made me realize that slavery was probably not only an issue in Sudan but all around the world. Contrary to popular belief, slavery did not end with Abraham Lincoln in 1865. Experts estimate that today there are still twenty-seven million people enslaved around the world. It is happening in all six inhabited continents, which includes the United States. The CIA estimates 14,500 to 17,000 victims are trafficked into the "Land of the Free" every year.
This book made me view the world differently. It made me realize that people have not learned from the mistakes of the past. People are still enslaving others and that is not right. Something must be done. The only way things will change is if people do something about. Everyone deserves to be free. This book encouraged me to help others. If Bok did something to help his people why can’t I do something to help my community. That is why I joined the Young Senators program to help my community to change it. The book also made me realize that I should never give up and always keep trying because some how some way things will change. However, they only change if one keeps on trying. If this man was once a slave, escaped and now he is an important abolitionist then why can something one believes in also happen. It makes me a stronger person. This book has made me keep trying when things get tough I just think of Francis Bok and I know I can do anything.

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  1. Powerful writing. You did Bok justice; his book and lectures are moving.
    Sometime in the morning someone will check grammar and structure for you.

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  2. Dan or Stef or whoever,


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