‘End It Movement’ Brings Attention To Slavery
by Emily Luxen
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A simple symbol with a powerful message is suddenly everywhere on social media.
On Twitter, Facebook and other sites, people are posting photos of red X's on their hands to increase awareness of slavery. Statistics show 27 million people worldwide are trapped in slavery, so on Feb. 27, the "End It Movement" encouraged people to bring attention to the issue.
Singer Carrie Underwood and Senator Bob Corker also joined the cause posting photos of red X's on their hands.
The issue is personal for the Burton family in Williamson County. After a medical mission trip to Ghana, Lauren Burton was appalled at what some children were forced to endure on a daily basis. Determined to make a difference, she helped Micah, 9, escape by adopting him.
"It was very hard to come back home and regain any equilibrium," said Lauren Burton. "I couldn't reconcile my life here with what I encountered there. I think every single person can make a difference. Even if it is just one child."
Now Micah lives happily with his new family and enjoys playing soccer and basketball.
"I'm grateful to be here," said Micah Burton. "It makes me feel good."
Lauren Burton knows while Micah's story had a happy ending, there are still millions others needing help. All members of the Burton family proudly displayed photos of their red X's to help bring attention to the cause.
"I think there is so much hope," said Lauren Burton. "I think it is just a matter of awareness."
Dr. Tiffany Ruby Patterson, a historian and African American history professor at Vanderbilt University, said the "End it Movement" has helped put a serious worldwide problem in the spotlight.
"It's not on most Americans' radars," said Dr. Patterson. "We should be concerned about oppression and inequality in the world. We should have discussions of how we are connected to the larger world."
Similar campaigns have been organized the last two years. Supporters said it is unclear if this will become an annual event.
For more information on the "End It Movement" visit enditmovement.com.