Kids & Teenagers at Burning Man

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike

Kids at Burning Man?

Yes
302
58%
No
219
42%
 
Total votes : 521

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:21 pm

Okay, if we split it into 2 seperate issues
1--Do you think kids jeopardize the event and should therefore be banned?
and
2--If there was no danger to the event (it's ideal gas time now, folks) would they add or subtract from your experience?
How would you feel about kids at the event?


And my private 3rd question--apart from the rigor of the environment, what IS the actual harm to children?
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stuart

Postby shocrow » Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:21 pm

stalking you to find out if you are a new friend from last year.
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Postby Ivy » Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:44 pm

Stuart,

I suggest no path, knowing that I have no desire to imply that I am telling people what to do not have stomes thrown at me.

To me, the issue is not kids vs. no kids. Do I ahve an opinion on kids at BM? Sure, we all do. But to me, this is not the black and white debate that's going on here that everyone seems to think it is. It's moot. BM is not going to ban minors, they decided that a long time ago. That has been established.

It has also been established that the increased awareness of notices/guards/warnings/etc on "adult theme" camps is due to inquiries and pressures from law enforcement.

everywhere I have seen this debate (eplaya, regional lists, tribe, other message boards and mailing lists), regardless of whether people support minors at BM or not, most people seem to agree on one thing: that parents are the ones responsible for their children. Not the communityies and certanily not the law enforcment.

Yes, i undertsand why BM had to aquiese to the demands of Nevada LEOs. likely I would ahve done the same in their shoes.
However, as strong and powerful community, I believe burners who believe in freedom and believe that parents are responsible for their children and have the right to decided what they should and should not be exposed to have the choice not to cowtow to laws that they believe are wrong.

This is my personal opinion. I sit here and read message after message about how people are against the law telling them what is 'appropriate" yet they aquiese to it, and why? i think fear and selfishness. They don't want to give up Burning Man.

While i understand this selfish desire to keep an event we love, and fear of losing it, I ahve to say I'm a little disappointed that people who claim to stand so strongly for things are not willing to fight for them, becuase it means Burning man is at stake.

(Aside: I undertsand there is more than selfish desire and fear at work here: I would like to thaink that I, put in a situation where my freedom was challenged by what I believe to be an unjust law, would fight it, all the way to the supreme Court, if that's what it took. but reality sets in, you don't have the time, the money, the knowledge, the resources to fight these battles. So I undertstand that.)

BM is importnant to a lot of people, that much is clear. it's importnant to me. but as I look around in America and see little tiny chunk of freedom being chisled away all the time, it's something that's more importnant to me. (Perhaps I should say, freedom is one of the reasons BM is importnant to me).

I guess the choice for me is not kids vs. no kids, it's having BM exist vs. taking the chance that it might not.


I hope that made sense, sorry to be so long winded. like I said, just my opinion and the way I see things.
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Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:23 pm

Ivy
Interesting post, and saying something in a very different way that I was trying to say at the same time.

There is a persistent concern on this board that in time Burning Man will become "Disneyfied." For me there are many ways of not taking risks and on some level to not have kids would be a sort of "Disneyfication." It would mean that BM would become more of a tame fantasy world where the risks and the community are not real, more of a playground than a challange to the ways our culture views art, life, society, danger and meaning. Why not go to Club Med if all you want is soft adult fun?
I absolutely agree with what SafetyThird says about overprotecting children and how "Think of the Children!" results in very little thought indeed. Yet at the same time we live in a culture that doesn't really like children and doesn't recognize their needs as real. To the extent that Burning Man replicates that attitude, we are not practising experiments in community, but sleepwalking though "fun." And life.

Does this mean that I think SafetyThird and unjonharley should be forced to bring thier children along? Of course not. No parent should have to bow to my ideals. And so like Ivy I end up wondering why so many people here are so willing to throw out children so they don't have to adapt to their presence or to what their presence means to the outer world. Yeah, we want to have "radical self-expression" but we are willing to eliminate a class of human being from the experience. And some of us appear to wish to trash others simply for being parents--when the simple irony is that every single one of our ancestors was a parent to some extent or another and dealt with it well or badly.

And I just want to iterate, that it is a parent's own choice and decision to bring his or her child and his or her responcibility to know what the family is getting into. And to leave if things aren't working. I just think that such parents deserve better from the community at large than a scolding.
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Postby _tears_ » Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:45 pm

safetythird wrote:Speaking as a parent (I have 2, my partner has 3) of kids ranging from 9 to 16 I would definately NOT take my kids to BM, especially since we're virgins ourselves. It's not because of the sex/drugs/whatever at BM. It's because we don't want them to see us indulging in those things while at BM. I guess you could call us closet freaks.

We have a place in Rosarito, MX that we go to frequently. We plan Family trips and we plan Adult trips. We pack the appropriate behavior for both.

If someone else wants to bring their children I say "Go for it". It's really up to the parents to decide what thier kids are ready for. IF it becomes a problem (ie the toning down of the event for the sake of the children) then I'd have to back the "No Kids" movement.

I think we have an overly protective society when it comes to kids anyways. Shit, all you have to do is say "it's for the children" and people will have to agree with you. Who's going to be FOR something that might harm children? I remember riding in the bed of my dad's pickup many times and survived it. If I were to allow my children to ride in the back of a truck I'm sure I'd be hearing from Child Protective Services or some organization like that. Yeah, and my parents used to smoke cigarettes around me all the time, in the car, the house, anywhere. Those bastards! Didn't they know second hand smoke will kill children on contact? Somehow I survived.

Don't get me wrong, I love kids. I own a couple and sometimes they're even useful. With all the crap on TV nowadays I don't think it would be all that easy to shock today's teens. Maybe the BM experience would be good for them, but that's a decision for their parents and their parents alone.

Safety Third


I think you are making the right choice. I would not want my children to see or even know i endulge on those things!

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Postby _tears_ » Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:46 pm

safetythird wrote:Speaking as a parent (I have 2, my partner has 3) of kids ranging from 9 to 16 I would definately NOT take my kids to BM, especially since we're virgins ourselves. It's not because of the sex/drugs/whatever at BM. It's because we don't want them to see us indulging in those things while at BM. I guess you could call us closet freaks.

We have a place in Rosarito, MX that we go to frequently. We plan Family trips and we plan Adult trips. We pack the appropriate behavior for both.

If someone else wants to bring their children I say "Go for it". It's really up to the parents to decide what thier kids are ready for. IF it becomes a problem (ie the toning down of the event for the sake of the children) then I'd have to back the "No Kids" movement.

I think we have an overly protective society when it comes to kids anyways. Shit, all you have to do is say "it's for the children" and people will have to agree with you. Who's going to be FOR something that might harm children? I remember riding in the bed of my dad's pickup many times and survived it. If I were to allow my children to ride in the back of a truck I'm sure I'd be hearing from Child Protective Services or some organization like that. Yeah, and my parents used to smoke cigarettes around me all the time, in the car, the house, anywhere. Those bastards! Didn't they know second hand smoke will kill children on contact? Somehow I survived.

Don't get me wrong, I love kids. I own a couple and sometimes they're even useful. With all the crap on TV nowadays I don't think it would be all that easy to shock today's teens. Maybe the BM experience would be good for them, but that's a decision for their parents and their parents alone.

Safety Third


I think you are making the right choice. I would not want my children to see or even know i endulge on those things!

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Postby stuart » Wed Jun 30, 2004 7:11 pm

so, if I am to understand it correctly, the lie that I told was that the org had no choice but to comply. I can understand that. So let me elaborate, I do believe the org had no choice to comply if it wanted to preserve the event.

And as I said on a regional, rather eliptically, radical self expression, radical self reliance and radical inclusion are clearly not compatable in their extremes. This is clearly being demonstrated in this case and I can think of many others as well. So, as we say in the design world 'good, fast, cheap... pick two'.
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Postby unjonharley » Wed Jun 30, 2004 7:24 pm

I'm bring one of my kids this year. I got a ticket for him to attend. How many of the parents can say that? No ya-buts. If you turn up at the gate without a ticket for each person in the car. Then the whole car load is held up until every one has a ticket. That"s the rule, isn't it?? I did not see a age line for free attendance. If these little pups are getting in free. Then why can"t i get my 44 year old son in FREE??
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Postby Ivy » Wed Jun 30, 2004 8:48 pm

I do believe the org had no choice to comply if it wanted to preserve the event.

It's not a lie--it's totally true. It had no choice *if it wanted to preserve the event.* For me, IMO, preserving the event is not what's at stake, but to a vast majority it is. Nothing wrong with that, i just have a differnt viewpoint.

And as I said on a regional, rather eliptically, radical self expression, radical self reliance and radical inclusion are clearly not compatable in their extremes. This is clearly being demonstrated in this case and I can think of many others as well. So, as we say in the design world 'good, fast, cheap... pick two'.


What a great way of putting it.
I think often the two that I would pick are different that the two other would pick.
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Postby _tears_ » Wed Jun 30, 2004 9:11 pm

unjonharley wrote:I'm bring one of my kids this year. I got a ticket for him to attend. How many of the parents can say that? No ya-buts. If you turn up at the gate without a ticket for each person in the car. Then the whole car load is held up until every one has a ticket. That"s the rule, isn't it?? I did not see a age line for free attendance. If these little pups are getting in free. Then why can"t i get my 44 year old son in FREE??


Hehe, i found that very interesting

Thank you for giving me a little giggle :)

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Re: kids at the burn

Postby technopatra » Wed Jun 30, 2004 10:57 pm

randy redhed wrote:
two, why hasn't this topic been the subject of a major town hall meeting? especially if we are concerned with the feds busting up the party? i see no reason why bmorg should suddenly abandon a central founding principle ('radical self-expression') without alot of public discussion first.


Actually it was a major topic of the first Town Hall after last year's event, in GG park in December. It was announced in the JRS and on the website, everyone was invited, it was webcast, and folks were able to send in questions via email or chat, can't remember which exactly.

From what I remember, those who attended and expressed an opinion pretty much agreed that:

1 - if you are a parent it is your responsibilty to parent your kids

2 - as a community, it is up to all of us to assist in keeping the kids safe from harm and ourselves safe from the law by taking responsibility for our own actions, which, yes, might involve a bit of not doing everything we want anytime or -where we want to.

3 - tho we might wish otherwise, we are in Nevada so we do still have to obey the laws of Nevada. (Why this is such a hard pill for folks to swallow is beyond me.)

(I'll try to find the meeting notes for cites, Stuart)

And as for abandoning a founding principle...hyperbole is fun but makes for a weak argument. You still have every right to express yourself...you are simply being asked to do so while still respecting your neighbors, a teensy minority of whom are minors, and to understand and accept the legal consequences of your actions.

This is not a sudden development, there is simply more education about it this year. And by some of the reactions I'm reading here, I say it's not a moment too soon. As someone once wisely stated in another thread (wish I could remember who or where), Burning Man entitles you to greater social freedom, not greater legal freedom.

I know it's hard to get the threshold of total freedom and not cross it. I mean, it's just one little step, and it's right there. But as reasonable as some folks sound here, is it really reasonable to blame the organizers for your frustration when they care enough to warn you that the cops are hiding behind the doorjamb?

Self-sufficiency is as much a founding principle as self-expression. Someone getting busted for indecent acts in front of or with a minor is not just reprehensible but could get the whole event shut down forever. You are thereby placing the burden of your actions on every last person at the event. That would be the ultimate violation of the founding principles - permanently negating everyone else's experience to satisfy your own.

If respecting kids for what they have been since the first Burn - a consistent and vital part of our community - feels unreasonable to you, then I invite you to reconsider your reasons for coming.
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Re: kids at the burn

Postby dragonfly Jafe » Thu Jul 01, 2004 7:04 am

technopatra wrote:...kids...(are)...a consistent and vital part of our community


Good post technopatra - you frame things nicely. But hypothetically speaking, if no kids showed up one year (just by random chance, not be design) I am wondering how the event would be diminished. Do you think kids are essential at Burning Man, or just inevitable? regards - Jafe
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Postby unjonharley » Thu Jul 01, 2004 7:20 am

All right this has been an interesting thread. But it is time to drop out of stering the pot. Kids will still come to BM and bm. Parents will still bring there pups. Just like sending them to school. Once there they are out of sight out of mind. I can figure a % to take care. The res5t will be the same as the out side world. <plonk>
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Postby Ivy » Thu Jul 01, 2004 7:23 am

I hope no one is thinking that my POV is that of the slippery slope that people are crying we're on our way to losing personal freedoms. While I do believe that t a small extent, tht's not what I'm saying here.

1 - if you are a parent it is your responsibilty to parent your kids

...

3 - tho we might wish otherwise, we are in Nevada so we do still have to obey the laws of Nevada. (Why this is such a hard pill for folks to swallow is beyond me.)


Here is my blunt summary of my belief: I agree with #1. If youa re a parent, your children are your responsibility. Nevada (and other states as well) makes laws to protect children. While this is not inherently wrong, there are some laws that i personally think cross the line from "parnts know what's best" to "the law knows what's best." I do not agree with that. (Please ntoe, I am not talking about child abuse/pornography laws--that's n enrtire differnt ball o'wax and I won't get nito what i think shoul be done to those offenders...) The legal system in our country offers people wyas to fight laws that they believe are unjust, but often to fight them you have to break them first. To do this would risk the event. It's a huge Catch-22 and most people would rather keep the event and not take that chance, which is totally understnadable.

I understand Burning man's position. If I were the org, I'm 99% certain I'd have taken the same stance.
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Postby Ivy » Thu Jul 01, 2004 7:24 am

I hope no one is thinking that my POV is that of the slippery slope that people are crying we're on our way to losing personal freedoms. While I do believe that t a small extent, tht's not what I'm saying here.

1 - if you are a parent it is your responsibilty to parent your kids

...

3 - tho we might wish otherwise, we are in Nevada so we do still have to obey the laws of Nevada. (Why this is such a hard pill for folks to swallow is beyond me.)


Here is my blunt summary of my belief: I agree with #1. If youa re a parent, your children are your responsibility. Nevada (and other states as well) makes laws to protect children. While this is not inherently wrong, there are some laws that i personally think cross the line from "parnts know what's best" to "the law knows what's best." I do not agree with that. (Please ntoe, I am not talking about child abuse/pornography laws--that's n enrtire differnt ball o'wax and I won't get nito what i think shoul be done to those offenders...) The legal system in our country offers people wyas to fight laws that they believe are unjust, but often to fight them you have to break them first. To do this would risk the event. It's a huge Catch-22 and most people would rather keep the event and not take that chance, which is totally understnadable.

I understand Burning man's position. If I were the org, I'm 99% certain I'd have taken the same stance.
I'm not crying wolf, censorship, DHS or Ashcroft.
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Postby stuart » Thu Jul 01, 2004 12:31 pm

(I'll try to find the meeting notes for cites, Stuart)



I got no issue

or were ya just pokin' me?
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Postby technopatra » Thu Jul 01, 2004 6:29 pm

While Unjonharley i right, kids will alwats be there, I still believe this is ahealthy discussion for folks to have here. Hopefully it will allow foks to think these issues through and help them make decisions about the events they themseles, will put on in the future.

Dragonflyjafe, your question is a good one. I don't know what impact on the event a kid-free year would have. Pretty minimal, I would gather. I guess I'm more concerned with the effect on the community. If parents can't bring their kids, then many of them can't come. They miss out on a connection that is just as vital to them as to you and me.

Can they create Burning-Man style fun in their home lives, anyway? Sure. But the event in Nevada helps inspire us to bring the magic back home. Speaking solely for myself here, I think it would be tragic to deny parents that opportunity to cater to folks who want to fuck in public, claiming self-expression.
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Larry's opinions on this topic

Postby technopatra » Thu Jul 01, 2004 6:31 pm

This was sent from Larry to a Regionals list where they are having a similar discussion:

"Larry Harvey on kids at Burning Man


I've been following the discussion regarding kids at Burning Man, and I have a few thoughts. Let me begin by quoting the first three paragraphs of an article that will appear in the upcoming issue of the Burning Man Journal:

'Kids have always been a part of Burning Man. When Jerry James and Larry Harvey first burned a Man in 1986, they included their sons, Trey and Robin. Trey was six. Robin was seven years old. On that afternoon the boys worked alongside their fathers. With a little help and the aid of a glue gun, they produced the Burning Dog: the Man's best friend. Since then, children have always participated in our community. Burning Man has become a gigantic playground for children as well as adults. Seen through a child's eyes, Burning Man can be a wondrous experience. Playing alongside grownups and freely expressing one's self in a world that's so receptive is not only healthy -- it is healing. Viewed in contrast with a world where children are routinely segregated from adults and parked in front of television sets, Burning Man can be revelation.

However, it is equally true that children have needs that are different from those of adults. They require special care and attention. In order to meet these needs, the first and most important requirement is that parents communicate with their children. Burning Man is like a kid's cartoon. While its content is not nearly as violent as most children's entertainment, it certainly is jam-packed with novel images and new experience. This is why we ask all parents to consciously take the time to talk with their children about each day's experience. Such daily debriefings can be very rewarding - far easier, in fact, than trying to discuss the more hermetic worlds of school or television. This is because Burning Man is an experience that both parent and child can actively share and create.

Our most important advice to parents is this: The single factor that most affects children at Burning Man is your willingness to communicate with your children in a way that allows them to express their own interpretations of experience. In the spirit of radical self-reliance, it is your duty at our event to assume complete responsibility for your child at all times. At Burning Man, however, this duty can become a real delight. This is your chance to see your child's world as he or she perceives it. In other words, what children witness is very often far less important than how they actually experience what they encounter. If something that is unexpected has disturbed your child - a "monster", anything that's incompletely understood -- you should always take time to discuss this with them. Pay close attention to how your child feels and imagines the world. Considering the way we lead our normal lives, you might never have a better opportunity'.

The article goes on to explain our policy regarding sex acts and children at the event. It includes the quite sensible request that adult oriented theme camps take the trouble to monitor who enters spaces in which sex acts are occurring. Does anyone really want to see little Johnny or Jill present at the Beaver Eating Contest? Apparently, the organizers of this beaver eating fest don't, for they've already scrupled to do this quite on their own. We think other camps that feature overt sexual activity should follow their example. As has already been pointed out in another post, we have informally offered this advice to sex camps for quite some while. In the past, we've also intentionally placed camps so that Children's Finger Painting Camp, as an example, is not located next door to Raunch Ranch, and this, too, seems to me like common sense. Let me also point out that having intercourse in the street is already illegal in Nevada, as it is everywhere.

I do not believe that the policies cited above have seriously eroded our freedoms. Fears that such restrictions will lead a cascading collapse of civil liberties are unwarranted (and, I'm forced to say, a little hysterical). Does anybody really think that the inability to have sex in front of children (or in the road, for that matter) will lead to a reign of puritan suppression at Burning Man? The answer is: no, of course not. Women will not be arrested for participating in Critical Tits, nor is anyone inclined to view simple nudity as a sex act. The authorities, of course, are apt to view sex acts in unrestricted public settings as illegal, and I am not inclined to dispute this.

To speak about this hot button issue a little more personally, I have never regarded Burning Man as the equivalent to a members-only swingers condo. For years, I took my young son the Jewish Community center in San Francisco. I liked it especially because of one particular policy. It featured a children's center with an open court that served as playground. A sandbox for toddlers stood at its center. Balconies lined the walls of this court, each belonging to an apartment that the community had provided for the elderly. Do you realize how aberrant this was by American standards? We warehouse the elderly and plant our kids in front of TV's. Generations scarcely speak to one another in this country. Surely, if Burning Man is to be regarded as any kind of true community, we can do better than this. If Burning Man is really radical -- and not merely shocking, naughty or uncouth -- it is because we have the courage to leap across barriers and recognize the deep humanity in everyone - including parents and children.

What I've just described is called radical inclusion. The Burning Man Project is pledged to fight for this, even though it may sometimes pit us against the authorities and (a little ironically, I think) those people who want to turn our event into an all-adult playpen.

Larry"
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Postby Isotopia » Thu Jul 01, 2004 6:45 pm

Do you think kids are essential at Burning Man, or just inevitable? regards - Jafe


I don't think kids are essential to the event. Not in my experience anyway. Having said that I *do* know enough parents who believe that having their kids at the event *is* essential for them. Not so much because dragging them along allows the parents to attend but because many - and I mean many - believe the event affords their children a profoundly unique perspective on the world - if only for a week. A perspective of openess, tolerance, integration, stimulation, socialization and respect that many kids are (or seem to be) sorely starving for.

I'm glad the Town Hall meeting was brought up. There were more than a few very articualate people speaking on behalf of children. I'll add tha their perspectives were nothing new. Only that they seemed terribly responsible parents who took great pains to reinforce the idea that parents are and should be responsible for every aspect of their children's experience at the event.
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Postby Stormy » Thu Jul 01, 2004 8:39 pm

Does anyone really want to see little Johnny or Jill present at the Beaver Eating Contest? Apparently, the organizers of this beaver eating fest don't, for they've already scrupled to do this quite on their own. We think other camps that feature overt sexual activity should follow their example.


How nice of him to speak for the GBEC. Little Johnny and Jill aren't the only ones they are trying to keep out. Perhaps its more for the benefit of the participants.
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Postby Isotopia » Thu Jul 01, 2004 9:02 pm

Little Johnny and Jill aren't the only ones they are trying to keep out.


Try hanging out there helping to keep the 'curious' at bay and you might get an idea of why they don't open the event up to everyone and their brother. It can be a real beacon for the hordes of prurient Yahoo/Frat boys.

Exclusivity can often cast a wide net and yours isn't the only complaint about who and how the decisions are made about who to let in or not. Some things aren't perfect but some things work better than no things.
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Postby Stormy » Thu Jul 01, 2004 9:07 pm

Isotopia wrote:
Little Johnny and Jill aren't the only ones they are trying to keep out.


Try hanging out there helping to keep the 'curious' at bay and you might get an idea of why they don't open the event up to everyone and their brother. It can be a real beacon for the hordes of prurient Yahoo/Frat boys.

Exclusivity can often cast a wide net and yours isn't the only complaint about who and how the decisions are made about who to let in or not. Some things aren't perfect but some things work better than no things.


Oh this wasn't meant as a complaint. Well not against the GCBEC. Just Larry's take on it. You know what they say about assumptions.
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Postby antron » Thu Jul 01, 2004 9:08 pm

Isotopia wrote: some things work better than no things.


nothing is better than true happiness
a ham sandwich is better than nothing
therefore a ham sandwich is better than true happiness
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Postby Badger » Thu Jul 01, 2004 9:42 pm

therefore a ham sandwich is better than true happiness


Well that's common knowledge. It's also why so many countries in the middle east can't seem to true happiness.
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Postby Mithra » Fri Jul 02, 2004 12:18 am

Yikes....Here's my take...

It really doesn't matter if WE want kids at the event or not, the benificial monarcy has decided that kids are welcome at the event. LE has decided that if we don't police ourselves, they will.

Neither if these things is new. Camps like TOA and Jiffy Lube already screen entrants to thier camp. It's not like anyone is saying you can't have that here.

Also I think there is a bigger picture here. Larry's vision for Burning Man came out in a letter earlier this year to Regionals. The gist of the letter if I grok it is that Larry would like to organize the BM communities around the world into a polical force. This will never happen without families, without more of the mainstream folks joining in. Maybe policical force is a bit strong, but community building, helping our BM communites to grow and form Mini Org's seems to be on the agenda. I mostly dig this idea. Many folks here in San Diego were unhappy and felt that the Org was trying to reach out and control BM communities. We have a great community here in SD but if it were more organized, it could include more people. The rub is most people want nothing to do with having things organized, which result in either little or no growth. Which suits them just fine.

My vision is closer to Larry's I think we can infect more people with burner values, creating larger and larger communites and eventually triumph over plain vanilla.....well mabye....

Ok, back to the topic at hand. Yep, parents are responsible for thier childern, and as citizens an as part of a community we have a responcibility to look out for each other. The kids too. I have no problem is this changes the event, like any other organic thing, it is alwasy evolving and changing.

As far as a virgin burner bringing a child on thier first burn. My initial reaction is "not too bright" No amount of reading can prepare you for BM.
I'd do a scouting trip first or at the very least, go to some regional events and hook up with some good folks and camp with them, preferably one where they had an other kid or two.

We had a 14 and 16 year old girl in our village last year. They never left camp alone and always checked in with thier parents, but these kids were the product of long time burners and are part of our BM community.

The rambling is almost at an end....kids good, but do a scouting burn, make sure they camp well and be prepared to focus most of your energy on them during the burn.

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Postby technopatra » Fri Jul 02, 2004 2:35 am

Stormy wrote:Oh this wasn't meant as a complaint. Well not against the GCBEC. Just Larry's take on it. You know what they say about assumptions.


He wasn't making any assumptions. He knows the people who put on the GCBEC.
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Postby Stormy » Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:05 am

technopatra wrote:
Stormy wrote:Oh this wasn't meant as a complaint. Well not against the GCBEC. Just Larry's take on it. You know what they say about assumptions.


He wasn't making any assumptions. He knows the people who put on the GCBEC.


Yes, it's put on at Gigsville Village. I camp there. My husband was one of the first judges. Our friends do the security. The security is mostly to keep out the lookie-loos.
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Postby Stormy » Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:08 am

Mithra wrote:Yikes....Here's my take...
Camps like TOA and Jiffy Lube already screen entrants to thier camp. It's not like anyone is saying you can't have that here.
Mithra


Didn't law enforcement make Jiffy Lube take down their sign because it was obscene? Was that about protecting kids?
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Postby Isotopia » Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:29 am

Was that about protecting kids?


Ostensibly it was. I still believe it was about being uncomfortable with a bunch of uppity faggots challenging the status quo with a very visible sign during an election year. The contention was that the sheriff (Ron Skinner) didn't want to be perceived as being soft on pornography - which I understand he believed the sign to be - during an election year. An ultimatum was issued, the sign was relegated to a very obscure, barely visible part of the camp (out of public view). The irony in this is that at the time there were other equally 'offensive' pieces of art around the playa a theme less overtly gay that remained during the event. The idea that Jiffy Lube's sign constituted pornography at an event which contained children was the primary concern he (Ron Skinner) seemed to be voicing. The primary message that Ron Skinner seemd to voicing to myself and several score of Black Rock citizens with his actions was that pornography+queers+children = child predators (i.e. pedophiles). In my book he was doing nothing more than perpeptuating the stereotype that queers are predators. Now here it is a few years later and the whole incident comes back to haunt both the event and the organizers. The hole in the dike that was never *really* plugged in so far as a robust challenge to Skinner's porn contention is being used as a means to twist arms and demand even more policing of certain adult activiteies. Mind you have have *no* problem with that. What I do have a problem with is the firm, entrenched belief that what we do see going on here foretells (possibly) a continued exertion of political pressure on the event to tame it so that it's more palatable to those who'd set themselves up to be arbiters of what constitutes art (i.e the Jiffy Lube sign) and decency.
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Postby Isotopia » Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:38 am

What I do have a problem with is the firm, entrenched belief that what we do see going on here foretells (possibly) a continued exertion of political pressure on the event to tame it so that it's more palatable to those who'd set themselves up to be arbiters of what constitutes art (i.e the Jiffy Lube sign) and decency.


All the spin, PR, and counterpoints in the world will never convince me that ultimatley, that *IS* what's happening here BTW. History is replete with examples of cultural chiselling that starts just like this. BRC represents a very nice model of just how such bullshit enforcement of cultural values counched within the rubric of law is used to chip away at free expression.

Just my .02
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