Sheriff William D. Snyder, in charge of the joint FBI/Martin County, Florida task force investigating massage spas in Florida for human trafficking. The investigation became public when New England Patriots owner and billionaire, Robert Kraft, and former Citigroup president, John Havens, were caught in a sting operation and arrested for illegal activity in the Orchids of Asia spa on Jupiter Island.
The investigation revealed that the women working there (mostly from China) had been brought to the United States by traffickers under the guise of employment and were working off their debt or working in exchange for protecting family members being threatened at home. These young women are moved from spa to spa throughout four Florida counties so that building cases for prosecution becomes difficult. Some of the young women are runaways and some are foster children. They sleep on massage tables and prepare their meals on hot plates. Their passports have been confiscated so that they have nowhere to go or even identification to get them anything or anywhere.
The tales are far more lurid, but Sheriff Snyder is right — if there were no market for their services. . .
Messrs. Kraft and Havens have proclaimed their innocence. Well, they have said that they did nothing illegal. Ah, but the ethical questions remain. The ethical mind determines the effect of one’s actions on others before acting. Look what frequent flyers have wrought on these women. The ethical mind also answers this question: What would the world look like if everyone behaved as I do? The world would apparently look like four counties in Florida, with a massage spa in every strip mall from Miami to West Palm Beach. That is one scenic landscape.
Just these two simple questions could have helped these titans of business find other “hobbies,” or perhaps just more meaningful use of their time. There comes a time, and it should have been reached long before ages 77 and 62, respectively for Kraft and Havens, when the frat house hormones are brought in check. Once we get the seniors under control, we can proceed to the newsrooms, the television shows, Virginia, and Congress if the age restrictions have not cast a wide enough net in reining in bizarre escapades at the expense of others.