NO KIDS ALLOWED!

Share your views on the policies, philosophies, and spirit of Burning Man.

Postby ygmir » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:43 am

regarding children:
some seem to miss, the difference between:

not being allowed
or
preferring they weren't there.

I see a disconnect here in the conversation.
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Postby lucky420 » Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:38 am

Amen & praise be
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Postby Mojori » Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:47 pm

actiongrl wrote:Wait, so now kids at Burning Man are a bad idea because obviously their parents are there to get wasted?


Maybe your implication is correct that few to no parents with children at Burning Man are there because they put their desires before the needs of their children. Doubtful, but anything IS possible.

The point is, a child's lungs are nowhere near as resilient and sturdy as those of an adult. The dust that whips up off the playa surface is EXTREMELY fine -- down to a particle radius of only 3 microns in the Black Rock 'Desert'. Something 3 microns in diameter is getting close to the size of a virus.

It's not clear that the lungs of an adult can eject such fine particulate matter through coughing, mucous formation or sloughing off of dead skin cells. A child's lungs would CERTAINLY be more susceptible to any long term problems this would represent. A child's lungs are still forming. Particulate matter is often a factor in the onset of childhood asthma to name just one problem. Why put a child's health at UNNECESSARY risk?

Have any of the parents who bring their children to Burning Man consulted with a pediatrician about this and other issues prior to coming? Please be truthful. And if any have, were the attendant issues of heat stroke and dehydration brought up as well?

actiongrl wrote: The one time in her six playa trips my child showed signs of dehydration, I had her packed in the car and off that playa within minutes.. . . We didn't return to the event, because my daughter is more important than anything else, including Burning Man.


Ah, no doubt on your visit to your pediatrician prior to taking your child to the event s/he failed to adequately advise you on how to protect your child from dehydration. It sounds like you have an incompetent pediatrician. Wonder what s/he would have said about the extremely fine dust. Oh wait, you never even consulted a pediatrician prior to bringing your child?

actiongrl wrote:I would never ever ever get into a circumstance or state of mind out there where I could not spring into appropriate parental action for my kid like that if I needed to. If your friends are doing otherwise, you should talk to them, but don't take your assumptions out on this mama.


LOL! I don't have any friends who bring their children to Burning Man. And no one is taking anything out on you. It's not all about you. You're not being victimized. Your quote was cited in a previous post as a jumping off point to ask questions to ALL parents at Burning Man and to correct your false claim that the Black Rock Desert is a desert (it's something much harder on the health of children.)

For someone who is such a paragon of parenthood you seem awfully quick to think everything is about you.
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Postby Isotopia » Fri Jul 16, 2010 2:57 pm

Ah, no doubt on your visit to your pediatrician prior to taking your child to the event s/he failed to adequately advise you on how to protect your child from dehydration. It sounds like you have an incompetent pediatrician. Wonder what s/he would have said about the extremely fine dust. Oh wait, you never even consulted a pediatrician prior to bringing your child?


I suspect that no matter what anyone here says to dissuade you from your preconceptions and your or condescending I-Know-Better-Than-You attitude that you'll find some nook or crack in said statements to anchor your smarmy indignation and patronizingly righteous point-of-view regardless of what anyone here might say to counter or contradict your staunchly myopic view of things.

In short, I guess what I'm trying to say albeit verbosely is that you strike me as an ass of the first order.

Seriously hon, you might try getting the #%*! over your tired self.

Before continuing with your preconceived screed on the inherent dangers of the Black Rock Desert and the child mauling, aerosolized dangers of airborne particulate (endemic EVERYWHERE BTW) you might consider
providing even a passing reference to any epidemiological studies in the literature suggesting a direct correlation to short term exposure and infant respiratory illness or any other chronic respiratory infection in children living in the Basin and Range province of the western portion of the US.
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Postby theCryptofishist » Fri Jul 16, 2010 3:15 pm

Thank you, Isotopia!
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Postby Mojori » Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:50 pm

Isotopia wrote:I suspect that no matter what anyone here says to dissuade you from your preconceptions and your or condescending I-Know-Better-Than-You attitude that you'll find some nook or crack in said statements to anchor your smarmy indignation and patronizingly righteous point-of-view regardless of what anyone here might say to counter or contradict your staunchly myopic view of things.


LOL! Good one Isotopia! You go girl! I don't know if you're a vicious queen or not but you sure got that razor-tongued, dishy, thing down pat! I love it.

I can see you're pretty accomplished in art of personal insult. Regarding offering any meaningful answers to the questions I've brought up, mmmm, not so much.

If you think it's smarmy, indignant, patronizing, righteous, myopic, preconceived and condescending to ask if parents who bring their children to Burning Man have consulted with a pediatrician prior to doing so, that's fine. I'll decline to agree. I'll stand by my assertion that this and some other questions are important ones.

And have my posts on the subject really been about my wanting to "find some nook or crack in said statements"? Nope. Not really.

But Iso, isn't that exactly what you're doing when you say:
Isotopia wrote:Before continuing with your preconceived screed on the inherent dangers of the Black Rock Desert and the child mauling, aerosolized dangers of airborne particulate (endemic EVERYWHERE BTW) you might consider
providing even a passing reference to any epidemiological studies in the literature suggesting a direct correlation to short term exposure and infant respiratory illness or any other chronic respiratory infection in children living in the Basin and Range province of the western portion of the US.


Even though I don't think what you refer to represents a crack in my statements, I'll say this anyway:

It is more incumbent upon adults who bring children to Black Rock Desert to have adequately researched whether or not a child's weeklong exposure to its UNIQUE dust problems will cause harm than it is upon adults who don't bring children. A pediatrician is a good place to start.

(And no silly, the entire Basin and Range province of the western U.S. is not a correlate of Black Rock Desert.)
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Postby goathead » Sat Jul 17, 2010 12:57 am

Mojori

Kids are raised, grow up in both Gerlach & Empire here. They are exposed to the same dust, year around from the same playa, just from the other side of the highway.
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Postby Mojori » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:05 am

goathead wrote:Mojori

Kids are raised, grow up in both Gerlach & Empire here. They are exposed to the same dust, year around from the same playa, just from the other side of the highway.


Well, if it is indeed true that little kids in Gerlach & Empire are exposed to a comparable degree of dustiness as are those in BRC then I must be wearing orthopedic shoes -- because I stand corrected.
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Postby goathead » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:14 am

Plus you also have to remember the playa, is not just "our" playground.

We play on it all year long, if it isn't wet.

:lol:

then nobody plays on it.

if they are smart.

:shock:
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Postby actiongrl » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:37 am

Then let me depersonalize it and say that you're assuming *all parents* haven't done the research, gone to the pediatrician, prepared fully, and decided in a fully informed fashion what was best for our own families, just like parents everywhere do every single day when making such decisions about other activities or areas they do or don't take their children into. Until you provide proof that there is hazard greater to a child there than what she faces in her own home town on any given day, I'm afraid you're going to have to accept that not everyone agrees with your assessment.

But since you did attack me, I'll point out that you have no idea of the exact circumstances under which my daughter became dehydrated in the example I provided, and decided immediately it was appropriate to accuse a person you don't know of neglect, which had nothing whatsoever to do with it. It's obvious you're just on a crusade and not necssarily, as Iso says, armed with any empirical evidence to support your claims.

I really see no need to engage with your sanctimoniousness, because frankly, my kid and the other kids whose parents bring them are all still coming to Burning Man this year, well prepared and well cared for, and will be the better for it.
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Postby actiongrl » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:49 am

If you want to take that energy and direct it somewhere that it will help prevent asthma, which you seem to hold as an aim, there is probably plenty to be said for working to end particulate pollution in places where children spend their entire childhoods. On the playa, for the short time we're there in it, we have the air purifier, humidifier, dust masks, bandannas, and the option to duck into a completely enclosed space at the sign of dust blowing into camp -- I contend that if properly cared for, actual exposure is pretty minimal in the end.

There is a huge population of children just a mile from me right now who are growing up next to a power plant that seems to be giving them all asthma, so one would think that there are much bigger fish to fry in this world.

I'll give you this: I wouldn't take a kid without an RV, frankly, precisely because of the dust storms.
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Postby theCryptofishist » Sat Jul 17, 2010 9:14 am

Not to mention the children who grow up next to freeways, or attend schools sited there. The kids in less affluent neighborhoods who live near arteries to and from ports are particularly in danger. Environmental Justice is an important issue that needs people fighting for it. Although, excessive preachiness is more likely to result in rejection of the message rather than actual change.
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Postby actiongrl » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:31 am

Since it came up, too: our pediatrician ( who is the head of her department at Kaiser) is enthusiastic and supportive every year as we head out to Burning Man.
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Mojori

Postby Melvynman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:58 am

Dude go get a life! Worry about something you can control. My kids have been going to BM since 1996 never missed a day. They can still breath. No heat stroke, didn't die when they saw old naked guy, no mental problems seeing all those people in gage in sex. Didn't get run over by art cars, nobody drugged them. Mojori my kids are coming so maybe you should sit this one out.
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Postby Das Bus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:03 am

actiongrl wrote:Since it came up, too: our pediatrician ( who is the head of her department at Kaiser) is enthusiastic and supportive every year as we head out to Burning Man.


Our daughter's doctor has no problem with it either, and this will be our 10th year.

In addition, over the years, we've had doctors camp in Kidsville with their children. If they don't have a problem with it, I don't see why anyone else should.
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Postby Das Bus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:04 am

goathead wrote:Mojori

Kids are raised, grow up in both Gerlach & Empire here. They are exposed to the same dust, year around from the same playa, just from the other side of the highway.


Thank you Goathead, for putting an end to this tiresome debate.
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Postby Sham » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:17 am

My mother, who is now elderly, spent her life afraid of stepping out and doing anything daring. She never learned to ride a bike for fear of getting hurt. For the most part, she watched life pass her by. Fear of someone doing harm to her, fear of getting hurt by an accident and spending years hiding under the covers or peeking outside from behind the drapes.

Mojori, life is for living and you simply cannot run from everything you "think" might harm you. I love seeing kids at Burning Man, and I'm very impressed with the parents who have the courage (not sure if that's the right word) to bring them. There is no doubt that they will grow up better because of the experiance.

Mojori, come out from behind the drapes and see what life is all about! :roll:
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Postby curiousgnate » Sat Jul 17, 2010 2:09 pm

As a child my parents were political activists, and huge fans of folk music. I spent time at folk music festivals in the 70's and quite frankly i had the best time in the whole world. There were other kids to play with, and our parents were happy and the music was fun. My parents didn't do drugs, maybe they would have a few glasses of wine. nothing that was any different then at home. I treasure those moments as a child. I still love the music, and feel that those times helped make me the person that i am today. Festivals are great places for children with responsible parents, and I think most parents that bring their children to burningman do so having been before themselves and prepared to put the childs experience first. Nudity whatever kids don't care. sex whatever might be a little weird but again kids don't really care. crazy dressed up people in costumes kids love it. cool interactive art kids love it. a fun week away from home with other fun kids in a super fun environment is something that i think kids would really love, and could learn a lot from. I applaud parents for bringing their kids to burningman and putting the childs experience before their own! And you know one parent takes the night off, and the other does the same the next. Sure wish I had gone as a child.
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Postby This Woman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 5:04 pm

Whaleboy quotes:
Can we look at things from the point of view, the greatest good for the greatest number?


I’m supposed to be radically self reliant and consider the greatest good for the greatest number? I think not!

For me and for so many of my friends, the burn is a liberation festival.


You want children banned so you can feel liberated….And you don’t see a problem with that? Your opinion – seemingly based solely on your personal experiences – that most of the activities and art are intended for an adult is completely irrelevant to any parent out there. Even if true (and I’d love to see you try and verify that), how is it pertinent to even the most concerned and conscientious parent? My camp is so goddamn fun I could stay in it the entire week, and sometimes have.

The presence of large numbers of children intereferes with the needs of the majority, mostly because of the risk of lawsuits.


I don’t believe you. Prove it. I’ve never actually heard of a lawsuit involving a child out there, but it’s on you to back up your statement.
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Postby This Woman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 5:10 pm

Mojori’s remarks about the silt’s effects to the lungs is a valid concern that each parent should consider, and for that matter, each person attending.

Mojori asks for a little honesty from parents, I’d like a little honesty myself. How many of the people that want children banned actually have children or know people that have taken children to the burn? I’m asking because your perspective of the parents planning, preparation and pulling off bringing their kids is the exact opposite of anything I’ve observed in 15 years of attending.

These boards are filled with threads of parents discussing whether or not to bring their children. I thought long and hard, my friend did, and then she changed her mind and left the burn early. Who has actually observed this mythical parent that just grabs the kids and heads out to get wasted? Anyone?

My youngest son came twice, when he was 10 and 12. My eldest was never interested. Before he was 10 I spent a couple years considering it and talking to other parents and children that had attended. I didn’t bring him after 12 because of expense. He loved it both times. I had a completely different experience when he was there. Now he’s 19, and a perfectly well adjusted person (he’s so much more than that, brilliant, funny, caring, observant and gorgeous, but I can’t tell you that without you thinking I’m being biased, which I am, even though it’s true).
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Re: NO KIDS ALLOWED!

Postby Apollonaris Zeus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 5:17 pm

think about the Kids!
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Postby curiousgnate » Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:13 pm

and how much fun they will have!
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Postby Mojori » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:47 pm

Wow, it doesn't take much to generate an angry mob mentality on ePlaya by daring to suggest that a lot of parents who bring their children to the playa are unfit to do so. Whew! It's really rather remarkable and not without entertainment value. LOL! ePlaya needs some pitchfork and torch emoticons! :lol: Tee hee.

Methinks many doth protest too much.

BUT NOT ALL. I've never said all parents are being selfish by bringing their kids to the Playa. I've mentioned, for example:
mojori wrote: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.


You gotta wonder though, when you ask questions like: "Have any parents consulted with a pediatrician prior to bringing their children to Burning Man?" or "Has anyone considered that Playa dust may be uniquely harmful to children?" you get several days of shrill, highly dramatic answers along the lines of;

"How dare you call me a drug addict!"
"How dare you tell me I don't know enough about my child's health!"
"How dare you say all burner parents neglect their kids!"
"How dare you claim children are not people too!"
"How dare you tell us we're all stupid!",

instead of, "Why, yes actually, I have consulted with a pediatrician prior to bringing my kids to the playa and he said it's okay."

Methinks many doth protest too much.

BUT NOT ALL. Happily several examples of the latter sort of statement have finally showed up. What a relief. I was beginning to wonder if they were going to. It's great to hear that several parents have consulted a pediatrician.

Prior to that, the only substantive, even-tempered post was the one by Goathead that pointed out that plenty of children live in Gerlach. I admitted my concern about dust may have been unfounded. (I'd still like more evidence that it's as dusty in Gerlach as in BRC and that Gerlach's kids have no higher than average problem with respiratory illness -- but, whatever, I've made my point on that subject.)

Also, it was naive to let myself be briefly drawn down into a grudge match with a particularly petulant young mother. Live and learn.

This whole dialogue has confirmed what I suspected when I entered the fray, i.e. there are fucked up parents who have no right to bring their kids to Burning Man and there are some excellent parents who do but have little or no inclination to discuss the harm done children by their self-centered peers.

One of the most fucked up thing I've seen demonstrated again and again in this thread is the assumption that just because you're a parent you're mature. Really? That and an almost religious belief that parenthood (particularly motherhood) is imbued with the sort of sacredness that elevates it above all question and critique. What a traditional value.

Even though I don't agree with all their points, I've noticed that those who've questioned the presence of children at Burning Man on health grounds, such as Mo, Mojojita, RainFX, Littleflower, Pandasex, Ellorum and Spectabillis have disappeared from this thread. Though some of that may be due to loss of interest I think a lot of it is because their posts didn't generate much of a sane, rational discussion.

What they got instead was a angry barrage of "NO ONE'S GOING TO TELL ME WHAT I CAN OR CANNOT DO WITH MY KID!!!" What a dysfunctional mentality.

No wonder there's still so much child abuse in America.

Moreover, just because it is currently the rule that children and babies are allowed to attend doesn't mean it is pointless to discuss that rule.

I love being around little kids. They have an openness and acceptance that really opens my heart. I wish I was around them more. I'm just not convinced that hanging out on the summer playa for a week is okay for their health.

Discuss amongst yourselves.
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Postby This Woman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 9:14 pm

Mojori, my contention is with some things that Whaleboy said that I’m not entirely sure weren’t written in haste anyway, so I’m not sure your comment includes me. But even though I asked a question I didn’t answer yours about pediatricians, so here you go:

I didn’t consult a pediatrician, didn’t even consider it, and when you pointed it out these many years later I did a Doh! With that exception though, I think I was an excellent, if overly cautious parent while he was there, and it is my experience that it’s the same far and away with the other parents out there.

I attribute this to heightened vigilance. It’s because there is more danger and much more to be considered and planned for, that parents give that extra attention. I was a better parent there than I am elsewhere. I don’t beat myself up over it though, in part because for whatever my skills, I’m blessed with great kids, but also because no one can have that level of vigilance 365/24/7.

Mojori said:
there are fucked up parents who have no right to bring their kids to Burning Man and there are some excellent parents who do but have little or no inclination to discuss the harm done children by their self-centered peers.


I do not take offense to this, and I agree you’ve been met with plenty of defensiveness, but then again, discussing this is what I thought we were doing:

This Woman said:
Who has actually observed this mythical parent that just grabs the kids and heads out to get wasted? Anyone?


I wasn’t being facetious. There are no statistics; is there any anecdotal? Of course it’s legitimate to discuss the presence of kids, but I have yet to hear of any evidence, firm or anecdotal, that any of the valid to speculate about concerns have any real foundation.

And while parents are being defensive about your concerns, their valid to speculate about concerns of the consequences of banning children have been ignored (I’ll include quotes tomorrow if desired, but too tired for review tonight, apologies).
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Postby Das Bus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:14 pm

Mojori:

I don't even understand why you care about children's health on the playa. Unless you're bringing your own kids, it's not your concern.

It seems you are looking for any excuse to ban children, just so you can have sex in the streets and do massive amounts of drugs. But I'm here to tell you, that behavior is ILLEGAL whether children are there or not.

Children have been a part of Burning Man since the very first one. It's Larry's party and he WANTS kids there, so it doesn't matter what you or I think. If this is really important to you, then take it up with him; 'cause it certainly won't be resolved on the eplaya.
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Postby Kinetik V » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:09 pm

This thread is a dead horse.

Fact: Larry says kids are welcome and the LLC board has backed that position.
Fact: Discrimination on public lands is prohibited. You try and push for a ban based on age, you can safely bet the farm that it will be challenged. And there's not many people with the pockets to fund that kind of fight.

In short every avenue anyone would have to try and push through such a ban on children at BRC has no chance of success. And yes, even the power hungry, never seen a PR opportunity I couldn't milk for votes at election time county sheriff can also be put into check very easily.

The stench of rotting horse flesh is getting to me, time to move on.
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Postby Isotopia » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:19 pm

It seems you are looking for any excuse to ban children, just so you can have sex in the streets and do massive amounts of drugs.


That was a really fucked up thing to say Bus.

Seriously fucking stupid. Not to mention presumptuous.

Regardless of his/her opinion there's not been one one suggestion in any post that suggests drugs and sex are the basis on which those opinions have been made.

That was a reckless post that merits an apology.

Cheesus.
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Postby Das Bus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:35 pm

Isotopia wrote:
It seems you are looking for any excuse to ban children, just so you can have sex in the streets and do massive amounts of drugs.


That was a really fucked up thing to say Bus.

Seriously fucking stupid. Not to mention presumptuous.

Regardless of his/her opinion there's not been one one suggestion in any post that suggests drugs and sex are the basis on which those opinions have been made.

That was a reckless post that merits an apology.

Cheesus.


No apology necessary. Go back to their post which reads, "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. "

"Adult Focus" = sex and drugs
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Postby Isotopia » Sun Jul 18, 2010 12:55 am

"Adult Focus" = sex and drugs


Your putting-words-in-their-mouth interpretation of it.

No apology necessary.


I think pretty much equates to "I'm too fucking spineless to admit that I crossed a line - even for this board."
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Postby Das Bus » Sun Jul 18, 2010 1:02 am

Isotopia wrote:
"Adult Focus" = sex and drugs


Your putting-words-in-their-mouth interpretation of it.

No apology necessary.


I think pretty much equates to "I'm too fucking spineless to admit that I crossed a line - even for this board."


Yes, you're exactly right.
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