A different take on the story of Hosea and Gomer. Have you ever stopped to wonder what Gomer's life was like before Hosea? Why she was so hesitant to commit to him? This is a story, "autobiography" I wrote through the eyes of Gomer.

**DISCLAIMER(S): Parts of these stories are taken from the real lives and stories of Nepali women. The names and details have been changed to protect these women.

I am in no way claiming this to be a correct Biblical interpretation but wrote this out of frustration with what I saw as one-sided views of Gomer**

The Honest Mutterings of a Wanderer ~ By Gomer Kumar
My Autobiography

I don’t know why I ever felt compelled to write my story. I am only a poor Dalit. I come from meager beginnings, but I can’t help but feel my story has significance. “Everything finds its meaning from its place in the story” (McLaren) and that is true for me. This is my story and from it I hope will come meaning and significance for others.

It wasn’t always this way. I was a happy little girl growing up in the BEST village east of the Annapurna’s. My family didn’t have much money or privilege but we were happy. My father was a good man who worked hard. He was a Sherpa that would take visiting tourists high into the Annapurna Mountains on treks. My family could not afford to send my younger sister Sarita or I to school so we would help my mother work each day in our rice patties. Sometimes she would send me down into Pokhara to sell our bags of rice to the tourists passing through.

That’s when it happened. I was 8 years old. I was in Pokhara one afternoon selling rice when some Maoists ran a raid. They usually stay away from the tourist towns so I was shocked and didn’t know what to do. Several men with big guns walked up and down the main strip forcing individuals into their truck. One man came up yelling at me. He told me if I wanted to live I would get inside the passing truck.

We were in the truck for what felt like several days. I could not tell where we were going. I had never been very far from the village before and could not read so none of the passing signs afforded me any information. I finally saw something that was a recognizable landmark - the boarder into India. That is when my biggest fears began to become actualities. I now knew I was headed toward Bombay…

I was taken off the truck with around 12 other little girls. We were there, at the tin roofs of the dreaded brothels in India. We were each sold to the garwhali (brothel keeper) for 500 Rs. – a debt I knew I could never pay off. There were large holes dug in the ground and we were told these were our beds.

I experienced daily beatings by the garwhali when I refused to please the different men. Finally, after a month, exhausted from the mental and physical torture I gave up and gave in. Little did I know the many different types of physical and mental torture and humiliation that awaited me. Each evening from about 5pm – 2am I was sent to around 10 – 30 different customers. These men did not honor or respect me. I was nothing but a piece of purchased property to them. I often felt ill but was never given any medicine. Within the first two years I had been forced to have two abortions; the garwhali gave me only two nights off before forcing me to continue working again despite them.

The police ran several raids of the brothels but never found me. You see, the brothels are a great way to make money – both for the garwhali and police force. The brothels get great political protection. So they are warned with a raid is coming. That’s when they hide those of us that are healthy and of use to them. It is only the sick and dying they leave out to be rescued during the raid. And so this went on for what felt like an eternity…

One night very late I managed to escape and just started running. I walked for five days and nights not knowing where I was going or how to find my home. I finally found my way back to my village.

My family took me back, I couldn’t believe it. It had been 43 months since I had seen them. It was with tears that we embraced and I told them of the dreaded tin roofs and my life these past years. I was afraid and knew I could not stay with my family; the Maoists would be looking for me. I went and stayed at the Peace Rehabilitation Center (PRC) for a few weeks. It was a center for girls coming out of sex trafficking. What a wonderful and peaceful place.

Yet I did not feel safe there. I tried to run away several times but was always caught. I cannot trust anyone anymore. In the worst moments back in India I would cry out to the darkness ‘Please, someone save me. Anyone, if there is anyone out there.” To me, humans seemed no more than animals. And yet I tried to go back. I guess I was just afraid that things would be worse for me if they found me having run away than if I went back willingly.

I found out I had contracted the dreaded “Bombay disease” from my time in the brothels. You see, the men in my country believe if you have AIDS and have sex with a virgin the AIDS will go out of you and into that virgin curing you of that disease. I was HIV positive and would most likely have the AIDS virus. There is no cure for this and the people in my country look down upon this. I shall never find companionship. My life shall end short.

It was shortly after this that I met him. Hosea was a man from the local church that came to visit one day. It was then presented to me that Hosea felt the Lord calling him to marry me, and if it was ok they would like to arrange a marriage between the two of us. This I could not believe. I was a girl of lowly circumstance – a Dalit from the hills of Pokhara and he was a Brahman of great and respectable standing. Did he know my past and where I had been? Did he know the burdens I carried? I knew no other way to support myself so I agreed and was then married to Hosea.

Someone later asked him if he knew about my past and the burden I carried. He said yes and that was ok with him because “the old is gone and the new is come.” I could begin life anew again. He was a good man, but marriage was difficult for me.

Having a baby within the first year or two of marriage is very important in my culture. Because of the numerous abortions I had been forced to have while in Bombay the doctors were doubtful I would ever be able to get pregnant again. PRC and Hosea began to pray to their Yahweh and within just a couple months Hosea and I became pregnant – we then gave birth to a son.
I tried to run away again several times. It is difficult for me to be in a relationship with Hosea. He wants me for himself, which I deeply want to, but at time it still makes me feel as though I am a possession. I feel as though I don’t have the freedom to make my own decisions and have my body as my own. But I don’t know what decisions I would even make given the chance. I have no skills, no knowledge – I must lean entirely on Hosea and that is frightening to me.

Hosea and I had two more children. They are beautiful, but I still live in fear that the Maoists will come back for me. Will they hurt my children? Will they one day take my daughter as they took me?

I could not deal with the fear anymore. I ran away again but this time I succeeded. I only knew the direction in which I ran but it was enough – I found myself back at the tin roofs. My situation was just as I had left it. I was treated horribly, but I thought I deserved no better. I know how to do nothing – I cannot support myself – I don’t deserve Hosea because of my past and the burdens I carry – and I never want my own daughter to have to suffer such pain.

Then came the day I will never forget because each moment is etched so finely into my memory. I felt so dirty. I didn’t want to be back there but I was afraid they would come to get me. I was afraid of what they would do to Hosea. They could take everything. They could destroy all we had built for ourselves. They could hurt our children. These men had already taken everything from me I didn’t want them to hurt Hosea.

I looked horrible. My ugly painted face seeking to be attractive. My worn eyes, dark from depression and fear, wet from the tears I had been powerless to stop. I was ashamed for him to see me here. I knew I shouldn’t be here. But I didn’t know where else to be. I had no other skills. I knew no other life. I feared any other life.

He came over and picked me up. I shuttered. Still the touch of any man is uncomfortable to me.

“We can’t leave. I can’t leave. They will beat me. They will beat you. They’ll find me!!!”

I pleaded with him not to do this.

That is when he spoke those unforgettable words – “I have purchased you”

I scarcely believed him.

Why me? I had run from him. He had already given up so much. He was Brahman – I was the untouchable. I had AIDS and was unclean. But he came back for me. He really loved me.

He really really loves me.


I thought I was protecting Hosea, but in reality I was only hurting him more. I was doing what I saw best in my own eyes, but it just ended up being all wrong.

I know I can never love Hosea the way that he deserves. I know I am not worthy of the love that he offers me despite where I have come from. But I know that I am better off with him than anywhere else. He has my best interest in mind and seeks my greater good. I am thankful for Hosea because he showed me a love I didn’t know existed.


Laws Not Enough...

The CRIN put out an article on Greece's current situation in the protection and rights of those sexually trafficked and exploited.


[13 June 2007] - Despite the enormous scale of trafficking of women and girls for forced prostitution in Greece, the government has failed to guarantee them protection and justice, said Amnesty International in a new report.

Many women and girls are denied protection in Greece because help is conditional upon them agreeing to testify against their traffickers, which they are often too terrified to do - meaning their traffickers escape justice. Thousands more are never identified as trafficked, are simply treated as 'illegals' and are even deported.

Trafficking for forced prostitution in Greece is believed to have increased tenfold from 1990 to 1997. According to non-governmental organisations (NGOs), in 2000 alone, up to 90,000 people are believed to have been trafficked into Greece from central and eastern Europe, a large number of whom were women trafficked for prostitution.

The new Amnesty International report, 'Greece: Uphold the rights of women and girls trafficked for sexual exploitation', looks at the scale of trafficking into Greece for forced prostitution, and points to gaps in Greek law and practice on trafficking that undermine the efforts to help trafficked women and girls.


To read the rest of the article which includes a case study of a woman seeking justice and protection, go HERE.

This is all too often the case. Many girls seeking to get out of prostitution are fearful of the ramifications of such decisions. Governmental laws are not sufficient enough to protect these women from those who seek to bring them back into CSET. Greece has implemented some new laws - which are not helping - and this is the case in many areas of the world.

The House of Representatives meet every couple of years to discuss the current situation and actions being taken. I was quite frustrated when reading through the notes taken at these meetings - although good things were said and suggested, we still have difficulty implementing any of the laws or suggestions that are made. In reading the report from 2002 and then the report from 2005 - very little changed and the ramifications that were set forth for those who did not implement such laws were not carried out.
The 2002 report said:
"The Trafficking Victims Protection Act contemplates that the United States will withdraw non-humanitarian aid from governments which remain on the ''Tier Three'' list after the next year's report. The ''Tier Three'' governments are those that not only fail to meet minimum international standards for combating human trafficking, but who are not even making serious efforts to bring themselves into compliance with these standards."
I have not heard of anything such thing being done...
To understand the tiers and see what little has been done to the effect of implementing change based on this standard check out the 2005 report pg.'s 37-39.

You can check out the minutes from both committee meetings here: 2002 and 2005


A Note From Within

So, as we continue learning and looking into the great crisis of CSET – we now come to the psychological impacts of prostitution. Before we go too deeply into this, I would like to start with an introductory letter to begin us thinking…

“Dear Mr. Trick” is a letter that was written by juvenile survivors of prostitution to the men who bought and sexually abused them. This comes from the book “Casting Stones” by Rita Nakashima Brock and Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite.

This letter is difficult to read and uses strong language – so decide now if you would like to read further or not…


Dear Mr. Trick,

You think I like your sex, dumb bastard, the thought of your sex alone makes me cringe. You could never pay me enough to like you. I took your money, but not you. I used your money to buy things for me that would help me forget about you. I hated you and you never knew. I lied to you and told you I cared. And you believed. HA! You should be ashamed of yourself…
A fifty dollar bill…When I stepped into your car you violated by body, asking me to call you “Daddy”…You not only fucked with my body, you fucked with my mind. Afterwards, I held the fifty-dollar bill to my stomach as I threw up, sickened by what had just happened. And that feeling is still the same, even after four years have passed me by. I’ve been violated by every type of man – rich, poor, ugly, good looking, every race…I have no respect for you. I don’t care if you are the head of a major corporation or you have a wife and a dog.


These are very real and difficult feelings to grasp and deal with. As girls come out of prostitution there are all sorts of emotions and traumas that come along with them.
Again, as discussed before the misconception can be that they choose to do this, for the money, but again we have to ask, “what constitutes choice when surrounding structures of power and work provide no good choice? The lesser of evils is not the same as fulfilling, life-enhancing work” (Brock and Thistlethwaite, p. 184). Keep checking back because we will discuss more the psychological trauma of girls coming out of CSET.


Pop vs. Soda vs. Coke

It is finals week here - I don't have much time to write anything of significance. So I leave with you this little bit of fascinating information. I am a minority in my state...and county (yes, you can even check your county!) Someone spent a lot of time on this and I think they deserve some recognition.
So....what do you call it? And while we are at it - if you are one of those "other" people...what the heck IS other...bubbly? beverage with gas? ...I don't get it.

Check It Out Here!