A Different Way of Playing
- 1 Article
- Age 17
If you have assume that every child and youth has a life like ours, you seriously need to do some more reading. Life like ours? What does that even mean?
It's a lifestyle that involves a cycle of going to school and applying to college to get a degree for your career. The things you have to overcome are (extreme) competition, laziness and peer pressure to say the least. If that's the environment your living in, similar to my description, then you're more than blessed. Out there, children our age, or even younger, are forced into long hours of labour, deprived from school, or in other cruel words, their precious childhood is taken away.
Let's ride the time machine and set it to the Industrial Revolution. To be exact, that's around the late 1700 - early 1800's. If you're a girly girl like me, the first thing you'll visit are the classy boutiques full of antique yet elegant dresses and those magnificent castles. But aside from all the glamour, let's take a peek into the growing factories and industries. Children as young as four are working too. In the Victorian era, children were put into factories and mines as chimney sweepers. Chimney sweepers were workers who clears ash and soot from chimneys. You can tell from the name and chemicals they used that this is a job that will make children ill.
Modern day slavery includes:
"child trafficking is the recruitment, transportation, transfer,
harbouring or receipt of children for the purpose of
exploitation. It is a violation of their rights, their well-being
and denies them the opportunity to reach their full potential."
"The internationally agreed definition for a child associated with an armed force or armed group (child soldier) is any person below 18 years of age who is, or who has been, recruited or used by an armed force or armed group in any capacity, including but not limited to children, boys and girls, used as fighters, cooks, porters, messengers, spies or for sexual purposes. It does not only refer to a child who is taking or has taken a direct part in hostilities." (Paris Principles and Guidelines on Children Associated with Armed Forces or Armed Groups, 2007).
"Children work both above and under ground. In the tunnels and mineshafts they risk death from explosions, rock falls, and tunnel collapse. They breathe air filled with dust and sometimes toxic gases. Above ground, children dig, crush, mill and haul ore." (International Labour Organization)
That's right, in a modern day like today, child labour still exists and they take up different forms. The following are some factors that cause child labour. The main factor is of course poverty and unemployment that causes families to rely on their children to fulfill daily necessities. The second reason is the violation of laws and conducts for manufacturing and exporting. The third reason still revolves around laws which is the inadequate enforcement of laws involving child labour. Last but not least, the access to free education is limited. Since child labour is a very controversial subject, there are a lot of organizations that stands tall and strong fighting against child labour such as UNICEF, International Labour Organization, International Labor Rights Forum and many more.
As I wrote the outline for this article, I put my headphones on and tapped "shuffle" then, suddenly Ne-Yo's "Work Hard Play Hard" came on. I tried relating it to my subject and BINGO! I found it. The term "work hard play hard" can be defined in many different ways, as for me, I think that the subject refers to a balance in life. If you work hard, you need to take some time to enjoy and have fun. But let's face it, we sometimes do extra fun activities and take little time for working. On the other hand, child labourers only work extra hard, but what about the "play hard" part?
sources : Wikipedia, Listverse, Scholastic, BBC News, UNICEF, YouTube, Google