Sample Sociology Paper on Sex Trafficking in America

The Frontline video titled “Sex Trafficking in America” focuses on young women who are coerced into prostitution. The investigative story is created following the collaboration of the Phoenix police department which handles trafficking cases and the frontline filming team. Through the collaboration, the team is able to unravel the deep secrets of a lucrative sex trafficking business that is conducted by luring young women who are on social media and exploiting them sexually. The story acts as an eye-opener on the social evils that might be going on right in front of our eyes without even noticing. Eventually, the team successfully apprehends a number of sex traffickers who are prosecuted and sentenced. To coerce the sex traffickers into a trap, the police detectives used a combination of pathos and ethos rhetorical devices to convince them to meet up. My choice of this video was influenced by the need to understand how sex trafficking is conducted in the US despite the presence of the police and other law enforcement bodies.

The major focus in the video is to find and arrest sex traffickers and identify sex trafficking victims and find help for them. The video seeks to unravel the secrets behind the sex trafficking trade by strategically flashing out sex traffickers from their hiding. Usually, traffickers use online platforms to source their victims. This presents an ample opportunity where the investigative officers use pseudo accounts to lure the traffickers out of their hiding places. The video also focuses on how sex trafficking victims who are mostly traumatized can find help. This includes finding psychological help both for the victim and their family members.

The two prominent elements of the problem/solution essay presented by the video producer include the problem and its solution. The video begins with a focus on how police have based their focus on the victims of sex trafficking rather than focus on the main problem, which is the perpetrators. Another problem highlighted by the video producer is how society blames sex trafficking victims rather than the perpetrators, making it difficult for them to recover and integrate back into society. The solutions that the video focused on is arresting the offenders and prosecuting them in a court of law. Another solution is finding ways that the victims can find psychological help. Also, educating the public on what sex trafficking entails to avoid discrimination of the victims.

The two rhetorical strategies used in the video are pathos and ethos. Pathos is a strategy that uses emotional appeal to persuade an audience. Ethos, on the other end, entails convincing an audience of one’s credibility in order to gain their trust (Saaty, 115-124). Use of pathos in the video is noted when the police officers use it to invoke sympathy by faking to be a desperate girl who is out looking some way to make money (Frontline, 00:023:15 – 00:25:00). This lures the perpetrators into trusting the police officer’s pseudo account messages. The use of ethos is noted in the tactics that the investigative police officers use to convince the traffickers that indeed they are genuine girls looking for ways to make easy money. The police officers send a friend request to the traffickers, engage in casual conversations, and post sassy looking pictures, which finally wins the trust of the traffickers.

This video presents a societal problem affecting a vulnerable population by perpetrators who go unnoticed because the society focuses on the victims more than the perpetrators. The video suggests that looking at the problem afresh from a different perspective is the only solution to see sex trafficking eradicated. My view is that the police should be educated around the US about sex trafficking since they are the ones who are entrusted with law enforcement. Police officers are known to arrest prostitutes and charge them in courts. If they are educated on what sex trafficking entails, the hunt will shift from going after the victims to going after the perpetrators.

In conclusion, sex trafficking has been presented from a different perspective than what people are used to. Normally, the focus is always on the victims where society is led to believe that they are doing it willingly or due to lack of morals. However, through the video, we are able to understand the depth of sex trafficking in the US.



Work Cited

“Sex trafficking in America” YouTube, uploaded by Frontline, 28th May 2019. Retrieved from:

Saaty, Ahdab. “The Rhetoric of Twitter in Terms of the Aristotelian Appeals (” Logos, Ethos, and Pathos”) in ESL/EFL Educational Settings.” English Language Teaching 13.5 (2020): 115-124.