Sail Man wrote:
whaleboy wrote:Personally, I do think it would have been wonderful to be a burner kid, sure I wish my parents had been burners (in the 50 and 60s???) but pragmatically speaking, I don't think its really a good idea for the long-term welfare of the event. Really. Most of what goes on is really intended for an adult audience, certain precocious and unusual youngsters notwithstanding. Most. It's for grownups. Are free bars novel and fun for kids? Is art that references some concept they'll not learn for ten years fun for them? Is liberated sexual exploration fun for them? Are anal sex training courses fun for them? Is meditation? Is swapping hard-earned experiences on how you built this awesome contraption or shade structure? Is trying some weird drug you've never heard of with a new friend? No, but it is for many of the rest of us. Come on, let's recognize what the event is and not endanger it.
I would consider bringing my not-yet-born children to the burn, but I think it would be much better to drop the kids off with grandma and just be at the burn with my girl, doing what we want, as late as we want, however we want. For one beautiful short week, and then getting back to the constancy of parenthood. It will be a week off where it's just about the two of us being ourselves in a temporary autonomous zone.
A good friend of mine was a hippie festival baby, dragged to a million rainbows by her hippie mom, and is kind of bitter about it actually. It was no place for her she says. She never wants to come to the burn...
Sucks to be you but my 7 yr old is going to his 3rd burn this year, as well as his 2nd regional in a few days.
Any parents that takes his kid into an adult oriented camp, or the camp that lets the kid in, should be banned.
There are plenty of activities at the burn to take kids to that do not involve sex or drugs. BTW, if your doing hard core drugs around your kids, you should be banned as well, after a swift kick in the nuts.
. . .
Ad hominem attacks like this one on Whaleboy say to me that the attacking person doesn't want to communicate but rather, wants the person he is attacking to feel so hurt he will shut up and go away. Pity.
I thought Whaleboy's post was measured, thoughtful and displayed a lot of common sense.
For me the relevant issues are 1) The health of the children and 2) the chilling effect their presence does have on the adult focus of the event.
1) Children's lungs are nowhere as resilient or sturdy as those of adults. How many parents have talked to a pediatrician prior to coming to BM about the effect on their child's lungs of a dust storm comprised of particles as small as 3 microns in diameter? Have any of the parents posting here who are adamant about bringing their children along ever asked one? Any physicians reading these posts who could comment?
Particulate matter is often a factor in the onset of childhood asthma. I know. I had it as a kid. I've also heard, but can't prove, that particles as small as those that blast your face during a playa dust storm are too small for the lungs of ADULTS to effectively eject them through coughing or the formation of mucous. CANNOT be good for children.
Then there's heat stroke and dehydration, both dangers much more serious for children as their bodies have much less mass and so can heat up more quickly. In addition, being smaller, a child's body has less water in it to start with. I doubt any parent posting here or otherwise who failed to protect their child from even mild heat stroke or dehydration would be forthcoming about admitting that on this board.
Moreover, I just can't help but think that a fair number of parents that bring their children to Burning Man drink and drug. If one shouldn't drive while under the influence why would it be okay to be in charge of a child for seven days while immersed in a UNIQUELY inhospitable natural environment?
Certainly not all parents posting here drink or drug or are otherwise particularly irresponsible with their children but, come on, we all know a fair amount are. All the parents posting have been painting themselves as sterling examples of perfect parenthood. No doubt some are of course. But you gotta believe that at least some of ya'll bring your kids because you can't find or don't want to pay for a decent babysitter or are overly bonded with them and can't bear to have them out of your sight for a week. Is it really possible that simply being a parent automatically exempts you from the human vice of selfishness?
And, assuming it exists, dropping a child off at a qualified playa day care center can, unfortunately only somewhat mitigate the destructive effects on that child of irresponsible or selfish parents. The kid can't stay in day care all day and night.
2) I think Mojojita sums up so much in her excellent post. (And I'm not saying this because she has a way cool playa nickname!
"Any parents that takes his kid into an adult oriented camp, or the camp that lets the kid in, should be banned."
Sadly, that's one of the reasons that generally having kids around my camp on the playa makes me uncomfortable. I don't want to have to be the censor in my own camp in case someone brings a kid in or one just wanders in (which happens from time to time). I don't have an "adult oriented" camp, but I (emphasis on the I) get the heebie jeebies if a child is exposed to some of the things that roll through.
My kids certainly camp with me now, but I waited until they were nearly adults before inviting them.