Ed Driscoll

CNN: Child Slavery Bad, Except When It Isn't

“CNN Asks ‘How Ethical Is Your Easter Basket?'” Spotted by Noel Sheppard of Newsbusters; as James Taranto would say, file this one under “questions nobody is asking:”

Four days before the holiest time of the year for Christians, CNN.com actually asked, “How ethical is your Easter basket?”

This was the headline for the video of a CNN Newsroom segment Wednesday about child slaves being used to harvest cocoa in West Africa (video follows with fuller transcript and commentary):

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: All right. So before you start buying the Easter chocolate this weekend, something you should consider, is it contributing to child slavery. Turns out that most of the world’s cocoa fields are in West Africa. Hundreds of thousands of children are forced to work in those fields. David Mattingly takes us to one of the farms in Ivory Coast.

As opposed to North Korea, a nation that one of your other news readers thought sounded swimmingly when she visited in 2010, even though child slavery — and worse — is a concern there:

Today, Kim wears dark glasses to ensure that her identity remains concealed. While she lost seven family members in the re-education camp, she currently has two sisters and a brother who are still imprisoned. She described a typical day at the camp:

“I attended indoctrination classes in the morning. In the afternoon the children were sent to push trolleys in the coal mines, often without any safety gear.

People were dying in the mines. There were numerous mine collapses, so many injuries, people who lost their legs, many who were buried alive. It was horrible.

I was treated like a slave and worse. I hardly slept. It was inhuman. But I never complained. I just followed all the rules. I had to find a way to survive.”

Kim claims that the conditions were so terrible that she thought about committing suicide “hundreds of thousands of times” during her 28-year detention. But because there was always someone watching her, this simply wasn’t an option:

“Each prisoner is assigned to watch four or five other prisoners. So if anything happens, the other prisoners would alert the guards because they didn’t want to get into trouble themselves.”

While her descriptions of executions are absolutely horrendous, nothing is more disturbing than her memories about those individuals who she saw kill their children in an effort to stave off hunger. In one instance, she recalls a mother boiling her 9-year-old daughter. In another fit of desperation, a woman killed her 16-year-old son, chopped him up and took him to a butcher to obtain some corn in exchange.

Kim admits that these details are difficult to share, but she bravely proclaims, “I want the world to see these images and to hear my testimony.” In describing the conditions in the isolated and volatile nation, she says, “I am living proof that there are no human rights in North Korea.”

Contrast those horrors with happy, shiny Riefenstahl-esque (or heck, Ted Turner-esque) tone of this CNN piece:

And of course, this is far from the first time that a representative of CNN has attempted to trash traditional American religion.