A video of a famous Youtuber made headlines a few years ago in New York, and for good reason. In the video, we can see a man in his sixties in a groom's suit, accompanied by a little girl in a wedding dress. The apparent couple took a stroll down the street and had their photos taken on the famous Times Square steps.
All signs seem to indicate that the couple just got married. But, such is not the reality. The video had been staged from scratch, with actors, to denounce forced marriages with children. Child marriage is a real scourge that affects no less than 12 million little girls forcibly married around the world every year. Sometimes they're as young or younger than 8 years old.
It was famous YouTuber Coby Persin who had the idea to stage this fake marriage to observe the reactions of onlookers in order to better condemn such practices.
On the video, which came out in February 2016, and which has since been viewed no less than 23 million times, one can first see passers-by intrigued by such an unusual and outrageous spectacle. Very quickly, they began the appear shocked.
Several people did not hesitate to go and confront the old man to explain to him that it is forbidden to marry children.
Little girls forcibly married, a global scourge
Consequences are terrible for these young girls who are forcibly married to men much older than themselves. They are deprived of childhood and propelled straight into adulthood. Often, these forced marriages lead to violence and sexual abuse. In the worst case, some girls are close to death because they get pregnant before their bodies and hips are fully grown, causing painful birth.
In 2012, the UN officially recognized 11 October as International Day of the Girl Child, thanks in particular to the long advocacy work carried out by the NGO Plan International.
Check out the shock video just at the top of the article.