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Sold In America

Author: Stitcher & E.W. Scripps Company, Noor Tagouri

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Sold in America is an eight-episode journey into the world of selling sex in the United States. Hosted by journalist and activist Noor Tagouri, this deeply personal, deeply reported series takes listeners across the country to meet the human faces of this billion-dollar trade – and uncovers its surprising misconceptions.
11 Episodes
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Journalist and activist Noor Tagouri grew up thinking she knew everying about sex trafficking in the U.S. But when she embarks on a deeply personal, deeply reported journey, taking listeners into the world of selling sex in the United States, she realizes the story is more complicated. Join Noor as she travels across the country to meet the human faces of this billion-dollar trade – and uncover its surprising misconceptions. Sold In America launches October 10. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
1. Sold In America

1. Sold In America

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Our series begins where Noor’s journey into world of sexual exploitation and violence began, as a 12 year old girl in a hotel in Saudi Arabia. But when she sits down with a survivor of the sex trade, she begins to understand sex trafficking in a whole new light. And now Noor is face-to-face with how easy it is for women to be Sold in America. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The sex trade in America may appear unseen, but it is not hidden. In Kentucky, where the opioid crisis is making people vulnerable to exploitation, Noor meets doctors and police officers who are training to recognize trafficking victims in medical settings and on the streets. By the time Noor leaves the Bluegrass state, she's convinced that we must talk about drugs and addiction if we want to help trafficking victims. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
3. The Buyers Club

3. The Buyers Club

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Every day and every hour in this country, people are buying and selling sex. It’s on the street, it’s online, and it’s worth billions. And the people buying are mostly men. In most parts of the country,  buyers rarely face any consequences, but one city is trying something different. Noor travels to Seattle where she meets a man who was arrested for buying sex, and the public official who wants to crack down on demand. But then she meets a sex worker in the city who flips the narrative about exploitation on its head. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
4. Bunnies at Work

4. Bunnies at Work

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Nevada is the land of legalized prostitution. At the Bunny Ranch brothel, Noor explores a model of sex entirely as a business – just like any other. She meets a highly paid prostitute who plans to leave the ranch with hundreds of thousands in savings. The infamous pimp who runs the place argues that if you're selling sex for money in America and you're not doing it legally in a brothel, you're a criminal. But Noor learns that only a select few can meet the standards for working in the brothel. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go tostitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. This episode is sponsored by Casper Mattresses (www.casper.com/NOOR code: NOOR). See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
5. Survival Sex

5. Survival Sex

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Noor meets Laya, a trans woman of color who became a sex worker after she was shut out from her family and job. It’s called survival sex -- sex work done purely to survive. What makes sex work dangerous for people like Laya is that she can’t report violent buyers to the police without fear of being arrested. Now, she’s trying to get a new law passed by the Washington, D.C. city council to decriminalize the buying and selling of sex. Is this the solution Noor has been searching for, or just a band-aid? You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A huge portion of the sex trade takes place online. Huge websites like Backpage and Craigslist used to offer a place where sex workers posted ads for their services. But these websites were also seen as a breeding ground for illegal trafficking. That’s why Congress passed legislation this year to hold websites accountable for posts related to prostitution. Politicians from both parties voted to pass a bill cracking down on online sex trade -- because how could you not want to help sex trafficking victims? The bill is called FOSTA/SESTA. But many sex workers see it differently. Noor heads to Capitol Hill for the first ever sex work lobby day and finds out that the people this law was meant to protect were never consulted before it passed -- and now say it's made their lives far more dangerous. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Noor wraps up her journey focusing on the one area all sides of the sex trade debate can agree on -- kids. She meets Ashley Cacho, who was moved from one foster care home to another and started being trafficked at age 11. And she hangs out with a group of kids who tell her about the risks they face ending up in the sex trade when they run away or are homeless for even one night. And Noor finds the answer to sex trafficking has nothing to do with sex. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
8. Talk with Noor

8. Talk with Noor

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Throughout the series, Noor asked her audience for stories and questions from listeners. In this episode, Noor will share some of these stories and answer questions. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. This episode is sponsored by Care/of (www.takecareof.com code: NOOR). See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The team here at Stitcher has another show they’d highly recommend you checking out. Unladylike, hosted by Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin, is all about the surprising and complicated and sometimes really fun world of feminism. They just wrapped an amazing season covering everything from feminist birdwatching, to gas lighting in the doctor's’ office, to slam dunks in the WNBA. Noor was featured on an episode where she talks about reporting on sex work, based on her experience creating Sold In America. This week, we’re bringing you something extra: an episode where Cristen & Caroline interview a sexual assault nurse examiner about how to get a rape kit -- and how they could restore consent, dignity, and justice to patients. Go find Unladylike in your podcast app to hear the first episode now. Unladylike in Apple Podcasts: https://applepodcasts.com/unladylike See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
9. Sharing Your Stories

9. Sharing Your Stories

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In this bonus episode, Noor passes the mic to listeners to share their stories of how the issues explored in this season affected them personally. You can hear ad-free episodes of Sold in America only on Stitcher Premium. For a free month of premium, go to stitcherpremium.com and use promo code 'AMERICA'. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Comments (40)

Heather Paxton

Great podcast☝🏼

Sep 30th
Reply

Leslie Darrah

I found it absolutely disgusting that Donald tRump signed a bill when he is accused of being involved with Jeffrey Epstein, a convicted sex trafficker. At the very least, tRump has admitted walking in on girls in their dressing room as they were preparing for the pageant.

Aug 22nd
Reply (1)

Shannon Underwood

thank you for putting the time into this to help educate and shine a light on this. I saw and read half the sky awhile ago and this podcast is amazing so far and I'm only a few episodes in. I hope to continue supporting women and places committed to eradicate and help stop sex trafficking. the fact that most women that are charged with sex crimes like prostitution are rarely asked if they need help is mind blowing.

Jun 8th
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rrp

I think this relates to movements like 'me too' that stand for the mindset in our free society. Women are taught from a young age that perhaps say without the protection of another we feel powerless and helpless. not just women , but children are all too often violated by incest or molestation. diabolical behavior consumes a disproportionate amount of young, innocent ,maybe naive persons. Sociopathy, mind control , and manipulation is so much more than anthony Hopkins and looks more like your preacher , boss, doctor , or neighbor. when the top of power equals the top of wealth, it means something. I dont think that people will need to be selling their bodies with proper education , or with medical care that should even actually include the same coverage on dentistry and mental health and rehab. If moral and ethical needs are no longer a part of a home or a complete family , than they have to be stressed without religion. when the physically weaker species has nowhere to go for help. we have a society dominated by women who will do anything to feel empowered. I do agree they should not feel scared , not of the law or someone stalking them. those with criminal or legal records are still imprisoned when they are denied jobs or housing. we should have better rights to privacy when it comes to employers , landlords, and other people who might threaten our safety. people disempowered as children or addicted to drugs cannot handle more obstacles. maybe there needs to be more advocacy or a place to go . for all that a person has through family and funds and health the same should be somehow accessible to more of us who struggle without. physical strength, money , and manipulation should not rival close trustworthy relationships must have the real highest value.

Jan 21st
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Dee Raffaeli

has this podcast been cancelled? there hasn't been any new or recent episodes?

Jan 14th
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Megan Kenyon

I had such a hard time understanding this episode with the static and funky noise. 😩😟

Dec 28th
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Emily O

This is interesting but you could put the whole lot into only two podcasts. They really string it out so easy to get bored.

Dec 19th
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Jess D

Noor is massively annoying. some of the info was good if you can get past the self rightious privilege

Dec 17th
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Nick Nicolay

Not this lady

Dec 17th
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Kahlùa & The Wandering Bean

I have a podcast hole shaped hole in my heart now. Could you please investigate something else because you and your team did such a good job with this one.

Dec 2nd
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Tee Aslan

Is there an international code to msg the 202 number in order to recieve photos?

Nov 30th
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Stacey

Noor is the only one who is degraded the girls in season 4 .. Some one needs to live a little Stop making out girls don't enjoy the fantasy of sex and being paid for it...

Nov 29th
Reply (2)

Jeff Lafferty

Working at social, economic and political change from the top down is like climbing a rugged mountain without a rope, then realizing the need to go back down. Those who feel a sense of comfort and entitlement within their position of privilege and power are not open to listening or sharing with those who have little, let alone handing it over. They will only go through the motions of appearance, always coming short of making a genuine change. Their grip is like iron and their scheming never sleeps. US history shows this time and time again: The American Indian Treaties, The Civil War, The Women's Sufferage Movement, the Labor Wars, Segregation, The Civil Rights Movement, The American Indian Movement. All of these suffered assassinatioms of leaders and much conflict - except one, and it was primarilly worked from home. The husbands were giving place at home to their wives and only then moving forward from there; still yet needing the rationale in Congress of balancing power with women's votes who were likely the agree with their husband's politics against potential new black voters. Only recently have we been able to get Hispanics and Blacks voted into governmental offices, yet still with relatively little power and much compromise. Gerrymandering and the Supreme Court's decision to consider money as free speech have contributed greatly to the current political power's stay. Progress is being made but generations come and go with forward and back movement. Even the recent effort for affordable health care had it's foundation, "single payer" yanked out from under it. Everything without it was doomed to fail. This was no mistake. You have to cut through a lot of fat to get to the constricted heart of a pig. Money, power and privilege are intoxicating. And many of those with noble intentions become discouraged dealing with drunks or get drunk themselves. It takes courage, focus and tenacity to go the distance and see your goals achieved. Gandhi, Mendela and Chavez come to mind. Or... we can do like the women of the Sufferage did and work change starting at home, convincing their husbands and children to be aware, thus preparing this and the next generation to see it through.

Nov 28th
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some yuppy

There is something about the way the journalist reports which comes across as disingenuous

Nov 28th
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Cynthia

so the supposed LBGT kids are more at risk thank "straight" kids????? come on!!! ALL kids are at risk! quit pushing this propaganda! I'm part of the LBGT community, btw. shame shame shame on you!!!!!!!

Nov 22nd
Reply (3)

Jeff Lafferty

Noor, I came across this TED Talk video the other day and would like to share it with your listeners. It's a three year old presentation by the former US president, Jimmy Carter. Like you, he sees the connection between the abuse of women and children with that of racial, religious, cultural and socioeconomic status. The three common denominators are men, power and the communities' lack of care or willingness to make any real and lasting change. Though Carter speaks of the problem being global wide (drawing on his unique position of access to information and experience), his main focus is on the US. At the end of the talk he gives only one solution that he believes anyone can take part in. To veiw the video, please copy and paste the address below into your Web browser: https://www.ted.com/talks/jimmy_carter_why_i_believe_the_mistreatment_of_women_is_the_number_one_human_rights_abuse/up-next#t-976217

Nov 22nd
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Jeff Lafferty

I don't know where to begin. Thank you Noor for all you have done. Which, I believe is more than what we have heard. I am impressed by the amount you have covered in such a short amount of time. Obviously there is so much more to do. Everything is so complex. You and your team are tackling a problem that goes back as far as recorded time and is global wide. I just subscribed and started listening to the podcast this morning and couldn't stop listening until the last one. Its made me smile and made cry. I am still very moved and am anticipating the next episode. I had thought to voice some criticism. But I can't. You are taking on a very noble cause. Which is more than I can say for myself. Something has to be done, and it has to start somewhere. I hope you are able to focus in on what you can do best and stick with it. I just hope that it involves the children. They are the most vulnerable and the most hurt.

Nov 15th
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James Bradford

I was a little hesitant in the beginning to continue listening because near the beginning it seemed like there was a specific stance that Mrs. Tagorui was taking. but i continued to listen and all i can say is she did a great job putting both sides out there without bias and showing that this is more than just a black and white decision

Nov 14th
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Jeniffer Lopez

Loved it. Great job. Looking forward to more episodes.

Nov 12th
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Peter Doty

I agree with other reviewers who find this podcast is mainly about Noor, rather than those she interviewed. I can only rate it as ok.

Nov 10th
Reply (1)
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