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Qualms about some protest methods


salex

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While I love the sign and the slogan, I am apparently a bit prudish to having a child carry a sign that says "If I want the government in my womb I'd fuck a Senator." And the hanger posters.

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I have been vocal about the anti choice people using their kids to carry extreme posters and with the Phelps family using their children. I am a bit iffy about kids at protests in general--I see why people would take them, but it also exposes them to a certain amount of generalized hostility that I think might be scary for kids. And while I am not remotely prudish, I guess I am a bit about kids carrying signs that imply sexual activity with adults.

If anyone knows these are false flag signs for anti choice PR, let me know. I just know they made me fell uncomfortable, and I'm unreservedly pro choice.

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No. That is not okay.

It is wrong to make a child hold a sign about sex, just as it is wrong to make a child hold a sign with a picture of a dead fetus. Or anything with bad language on it in general.

I dont think children should be in protests at all-they are likely to meet people who are very hostile to them, and also children are not able to fully understand issues, theyre just parroting their parents views. No child has a point of view on abortion, it is not something they should be concerned with. I can sort of understand if they were a teenager who was passionate about the cause, deciding that they want to go, and taking an adult with them, but a child cant understand what is going on.

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Totally agree with your ick-ness. That is not OK.

I am not happy with having kids below 12 on protests. I was 12 when I first protested and I was sure that the cause was right. However if I'd been on a protest when I was 10 I would just have been doing what my mum or dad said. It wouldn't have been my belief.

It seems a bit horrible to imagine kids holding protest signs for causes they may grow up to totally disagree with because Mummy and Daddy told them to. It's worse IMO when it's sexually charged like the sign the kid is holding there.

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Anti-choicers have been jumping all over that picture, so it's being used as anti-choice PR regardless of who was holding the sign. And I'm positive this sign was at least mentioned in another thread on FJ, but I can't find it now...

I agree that there's something wrong with a kid holding that sign. It's hilarious when a grown woman holds it. It's squicky when a kid holds it.

I have no problem with kids holding signs that convey their beliefs in their own words. I am all for willing children contributing to public discourse, and I'm weary of discounting people's opinions just because they're influenced by their parents. I was a very opinionated child, and it pissed me off when people refused to believe that I could have genuine opinions.

I have a problem with people putting words in their children's mouths - you see that when kids hold signs with slogans you know they didn't come up with. Also, when the Duggar children deliver rehearsed lines about subjects you know they have no experience with, like evolution. And I have a problem with people who use children as props. I know it's unreasonable to expect people to just leave their kids at home when they go to political events, but give them toys and a blanket to play on. Don't line them up with tape over their mouths.

I also don't have a problem with people who bring babies or pets to protests and have them wear slogans, because it's not unironically implied that the baby/dog believes this. It's just cute, and not dishonest like when people take children who are old enough to have opinions and tell them what to say.

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If my child asked to join a protest, it was an issue they cared about and the situation seemed safe, I would allow it - or perhaps suggest alternate methods of expression, like writing a letter to the paper or something. I vividly remember joining in some local protests about the Iraq War at about 11, but that was my decision and my mom was an indifferent chaperone. For municipal issues (say, a proposed school closure), I joined in at about 7 - again, my choice. Want to protest? Find a babysitter. Don't push your kid into it unless they take their own initiative to join in.

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My daughter protested here with me in North Carolina last week. The organizers handed her a sign that said "Protect Women's Health," and made sure I knew it was a child-friendly sign.

We talked about why this was important on our way there. She's six, so reproductive rights aren't on her radar yet, but I want to make sure they're in place for her a decade from now when they become important. We talked about having choices about what you decide to do with your own body, and having all of the "menu," not just one or two things. I tried to put it in a way that helped her see that no matter what the choice was about, that it wasn't OK to have a stranger tell you what's fine and not fine to do with your body. At one point the conversation was a lot like the stranger-danger talk, which seemed oddly appropriate. Don't let a stranger touch you, even if it's a state legislator.

She understood on her level that we were fighting for the right to have all the choices for when she is older. Even if she grows up to be anti-choice (I hope not!) I hope she will never object to holding a "Protect Women's Health" sign.

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The organizers handed her a sign that said "Protect Women's Health," and made sure I knew it was a child-friendly sign.

Which is a sign I can see a kid holding.

A couple of the pictures from the Tx protests just hit a sour key for my little marketing/PR mind. I knew the sign would be used by the opposition as "proof" that the ebil feminists were ebil mothers... IT seemed like such an odd PR choice that I wondered if it was really handed out by anti choicers-- "our team" is usually more adept at image than this. And since every action is a public action with a camera on every phone and instant uploads, it just hit me as off.

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I spent a significant portion of my childhood at various protests and events against nuclear arms, for environmental regulation, political funding reform and so on. My parents job was running campaigns. They would leave us with our grandparents for marches that had a potential for violence. We went door to door, helped with envelope stuffing and made calls from an early age. As an adult I ended up sharing most of my parents views on most political issues, and generally enjoyed being involved-- although I did go through a phase at 8 of rabidly defending people's right to pollute the environment :D I think I must have been a little sick of being dragged around to events.

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If the child can't comprehend what it is, exactly, what they're protesting, and what they're advocating, that child should be at home.

That goes for the whole spectrum, honestly.

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If the child can't comprehend what it is, exactly, what they're protesting, and what they're advocating, that child should be at home.

That goes for the whole spectrum, honestly.

It'd be nice if it went for adults, too.

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I spent a significant portion of my childhood at various protests and events against nuclear arms, for environmental regulation, political funding reform and so on. My parents job was running campaigns. They would leave us with our grandparents for marches that had a potential for violence. We went door to door, helped with envelope stuffing and made calls from an early age. As an adult I ended up sharing most of my parents views on most political issues, and generally enjoyed being involved-- although I did go through a phase at 8 of rabidly defending people's right to pollute the environment :D I think I must have been a little sick of being dragged around to events.

LOL! :lol:

We sometimes get kids who have been dragged along to Party meetings or the like. They always are very bored and sometimes they do what you did - take up arms for the other side, which is quite funny :)

It's a tough one. I would emphatically NOT take a kid to an anti-fascist counter demo. It can get violent, more or less, and it's not an appropriate place for a child. However if it was a demo against a library or a swimming pool being shut down, I might if I was really sure the kid wanted to go and understood why the demo was happening. I would also let them write their own sign - after all, adults do it!

In my experience, what kids like the best about demos is chants (especially if swear-words are involved). This is a legitimate time to shout very loudly and say naughty words, and not only do mum and dad not tell you off, they smile at you! :dance:

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