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Taking Children to Protests


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#1 bborg

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 08:03 PM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.

#2 B. Royce

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 08:18 PM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.


Yeah, as sweet as those children look, I agree. Now, if they were holding up a children's book whose theme was individuality, that would make sense.

#3 B. Royce

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 08:20 PM

That is---a poster of a children's book.

#4 Carlos

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 08:24 PM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.

I was thinking the same thing actually. We never hesitate to criticize when Environmentalists or Socialists use kids in their demonstrations, so it wouldn't be fair to omit this.

But still it's wonderful that she (the mother) was involved in this protest, and more power to her :wacko:

#5 Cabbie

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 01:33 AM

Those are good points. Perhaps it would make more sense if what was said on their sign was phrased from a 7 year old perspective...how one would do that though, I don't know

she is a cute lil gal though :wacko:

#6 ~Sophia~

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 02:48 AM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.


I had the same reaction.

#7 RayK

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 05:12 AM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.


I had the same reaction.

Well, I did not have the same reaction. Should we also think it is ridiculous when children go to welcome back a parent and hold signs that state "we missed you?" Do you think at the age of two or three that they comprehend what the sign says or whether they really missed their parent? I doubt that the children will even remember holding those signs, as I do not remember holding signs for my dad. But I do think that children can sense when their parents are sad or angry, although they might not be able to define what they sense. And when children see their parents go through these type of emotions, whether crying over a missing spouse or crying over lost material values, they usually want to help their parent.

I would bet that most of us do not know why Jenn chose to use her children, but I think we might ask before condemning her actions as being preposterous. And I would add that our enemies use this tactic all the time to draw on people's emotions. Should we tie our own hands while in a war for our lifes? Two rules of war, define one's enemies and then annihilate them by any means available.

#8 bborg

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 05:24 AM

Well, I did not have the same reaction. Should we also think it is ridiculous when children go to welcome back a parent and hold signs that state "we missed you?" Do you think at the age of two or three that they comprehend what the sign says or whether they really missed their parent? I doubt that the children will even remember holding those signs, as I do not remember holding signs for my dad. But I do think that children can sense when their parents are sad or angry, although they might not be able to define what they sense. And when children see their parents go through these type of emotions, whether crying over a missing spouse or crying over lost material values, they usually want to help their parent.

What does this have to do with anything?

I would bet that most of us do not know why Jenn chose to use her children, but I think we might ask before condemning her actions as being preposterous. And I would add that our enemies use this tactic all the time to draw on people's emotions. Should we tie our own hands while in a war for our lifes? Two rules of war, define one's enemies and then annihilate them by any means available.

What?

Look, I said I disagreed with it and I explained why. I'm going to leave it at that.

#9 RayK

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 06:00 AM

Well, I did not have the same reaction. Should we also think it is ridiculous when children go to welcome back a parent and hold signs that state "we missed you?" Do you think at the age of two or three that they comprehend what the sign says or whether they really missed their parent? I doubt that the children will even remember holding those signs, as I do not remember holding signs for my dad. But I do think that children can sense when their parents are sad or angry, although they might not be able to define what they sense. And when children see their parents go through these type of emotions, whether crying over a missing spouse or crying over lost material values, they usually want to help their parent.

What does this have to do with anything?

I would bet that most of us do not know why Jenn chose to use her children, but I think we might ask before condemning her actions as being preposterous. And I would add that our enemies use this tactic all the time to draw on people's emotions. Should we tie our own hands while in a war for our lifes? Two rules of war, define one's enemies and then annihilate them by any means available.

What?

Look, I said I disagreed with it and I explained why. I'm going to leave it at that.

What it has to do with it, is that children want to play a part in what their parents are fighting for. You might not understand this context as you might not have ever been through it as an adult. But I see nothing wrong with parents allowing their children to play a part in a fight, in this context, that includes the childrens future also.

I understand that you disagreed with it, but I agreed with it and attempted to explain why.

#10 realitycheck44

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 06:00 AM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.

I agree. The only sign that I found acceptable for a kid was the one that said "When I grow up, I want to be FREE!" Even though the child probably doesn't understand the full meaning of freedom, I think they can implicitly grasp the idea.
"The Priest hated him, for the Viking looked at heaven only when he bent for a drink over a mountain brook, and there, overshadowing the sky, he saw his own picture.
...
A Viking lived, who had laughed at Kings, who had laughed at Priests, who had laughed at Men, who had held, sacred and inviolable, high over all temples, over all to which men knew how to kneel, his one banner - the sanctity of life." -Ayn Rand

#11 ewv

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 08:42 AM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.

I agree. The only sign that I found acceptable for a kid was the one that said "When I grow up, I want to be FREE!" Even though the child probably doesn't understand the full meaning of freedom, I think they can implicitly grasp the idea.

Maybe they read Anthem!

#12 B. Royce

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 12:31 PM

I don't agree with using children in protests, even if they are only helping to hold up signs and not chanting slogans. Participants should all understand the principles they are defending and the threats they are fighting, which children obviously do not. Even a sign that says, "Read Atlas Shrugged!!" looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself.


I had the same reaction.

Well, I did not have the same reaction. Should we also think it is ridiculous when children go to welcome back a parent and hold signs that state "we missed you?" Do you think at the age of two or three that they comprehend what the sign says or whether they really missed their parent? I doubt that the children will even remember holding those signs, as I do not remember holding signs for my dad. But I do think that children can sense when their parents are sad or angry, although they might not be able to define what they sense. And when children see their parents go through these type of emotions, whether crying over a missing spouse or crying over lost material values, they usually want to help their parent.

I would bet that most of us do not know why Jenn chose to use her children, but I think we might ask before condemning her actions as being preposterous. And I would add that our enemies use this tactic all the time to draw on people's emotions. Should we tie our own hands while in a war for our lifes? Two rules of war, define one's enemies and then annihilate them by any means available.


Ray, no one has condemned Jenn, nor, to my knowledge, does anyone condemn the mother of a small child who is holding up a welcome sign for his dad who is returning from Iraq. It is just that we all know that the child can't read and has no idea of the significance of the sign---which makes his action insignificant. Do you think the dad really cares if his two or three year old is carrying a sign? I know I wouldn't.
On the other hand, I do see your point---which is a very good one---about children wanting to help, and perhaps something like that occurred here. Whatever happened, I certainly don't think it is a very serious issue but (I'll repeat), I don't take anything said by posters here as being a condemnation of Jenn.

#13 RayK

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 08:02 PM

Brian, Bryson and others, if I misunderstood Bryson's statements then I apologize for that. But Bryson stated that it "looks ridiculous when the person holding it lacks the reading comprehension to have done so himself." And since it is the parent that put the child in the "ridiculous" situation, than the parent is the one to take the blame/condemn. Of course I do not agree that it is a ridiculous situation and that is why I defended the situation and the parent.

A mother can ask the child what it is that the child would like to say to their dad that is returning from Iraq and then write out the poster for the child. I think that whether the child wrote the note or not it will touch some, maybe most, dads to see their wife and children at the airport, dock or a front yard waiting for his arrival with such signs.

Another possible reason for having children help, if they wanted to, is that two, three or four signs are much better than just one sign at such an event as is under discussion. The more people, whether children or not, the more signs that can be held and the more ideas that can be spread. And another possible reason for using children is the concretizing of abstact ideas. "When I grow up I want to be free," lets everyone see what they are doing to the children of this country with their backing of certain ideas or in this case "stimulus bills."

I also do not think that this is a very serious issue and why I could not agree with the condemnation that it seemed to me was being given.

#14 bborg

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 08:37 PM

I just think there is a huge difference between giving words to what you know a child is feeling but is unable to express, and having them campaign for highly advanced abstractions that obviously are the views of the parent and not the child.

Another possible reason for having children help, if they wanted to, is that two, three or four signs are much better than just one sign at such an event as is under discussion. The more people, whether children or not, the more signs that can be held and the more ideas that can be spread. And another possible reason for using children is the concretizing of abstact ideas. "When I grow up I want to be free," lets everyone see what they are doing to the children of this country with their backing of certain ideas or in this case "stimulus bills."

"I want my son/daughter to be free when he/she grows up" sends the same message without putting words in the child's mouth.

To suggest that I have "condemned" Jenn, who I do not know, is unfair since I have said nothing of her motives. Clearly I believe she made an error, but for all I know it was a perfectly honest one. That's not a subject I have a right to speculate about. All I did was point out something I believed was wrong.

#15 Betsy Speicher

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 10:03 PM

To suggest that I have "condemned" Jenn, who I do not know, is unfair since I have said nothing of her motives. Clearly I believe she made an error, but for all I know it was a perfectly honest one. That's not a subject I have a right to speculate about. All I did was point out something I believed was wrong.

I've been in contact with Jenn and the context is very different than what some people are assuming. Jenn plans to blog about it and, when she does, I'll post a link to it.
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#16 B. Royce

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 10:18 PM

To suggest that I have "condemned" Jenn, who I do not know, is unfair since I have said nothing of her motives. Clearly I believe she made an error, but for all I know it was a perfectly honest one. That's not a subject I have a right to speculate about. All I did was point out something I believed was wrong.

I've been in contact with Jenn and the context is very different than what some people are assuming. Jenn plans to blog about it and, when she does, I'll post a link to it.


Thank you, Betsy.

#17 Carlos

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 04:40 AM

I do want to say that I regret the thread getting dominated by not positive comments on this issue.

What should be focused on is that an Objectivist participated in a rational, grassroots protest, and that it has garnered a lot of attention. Apparently Jenn was mentioned (correct me if I'm wrong) on Michelle Malkin's blog in one of her write-ups.

Michelle humorously quipped about the protest that "Fiscal responsibility is the new counter-culture" :wacko:

#18 ewv

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 05:36 AM

I do want to say that I regret the thread getting dominated by not positive comments on this issue.

What should be focused on is that an Objectivist participated in a rational, grassroots protest, and that it has garnered a lot of attention. Apparently Jenn was mentioned (correct me if I'm wrong) on Michelle Malkin's blog in one of her write-ups.

Michelle humorously quipped about the protest that "Fiscal responsibility is the new counter-culture" :wacko:

There is nothing wrong with the children being there and holding the signs. It was a demonstration, not a philosophy lecture. No one expected that the children had read Atlas Shrugged, they were only holding their mother's signs. If it helped to bring attention to the signs and show that normal families support Ayn Rand, then so much the better. There has been no child abuse or exploitation.

This isn't anything at all like those leftist propaganda videos where children are given scripted, rehearsed lines as if they are speaking on behalf of their generation.

#19 realitycheck44

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 05:52 AM

I do want to say that I regret the thread getting dominated by not positive comments on this issue.

What should be focused on is that an Objectivist participated in a rational, grassroots protest, and that it has garnered a lot of attention.

I agree. My apologies to Jenn and her children for assuming a context when I really didn't know. While I still think the criticism against using children in a protest is valid, it is really too small of an issue to focus on.
"The Priest hated him, for the Viking looked at heaven only when he bent for a drink over a mountain brook, and there, overshadowing the sky, he saw his own picture.
...
A Viking lived, who had laughed at Kings, who had laughed at Priests, who had laughed at Men, who had held, sacred and inviolable, high over all temples, over all to which men knew how to kneel, his one banner - the sanctity of life." -Ayn Rand

#20 Betsy Speicher

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 06:09 AM

There is nothing wrong with the children being there and holding the signs. It was a demonstration, not a philosophy lecture. No one expected that the children had read Atlas Shrugged, they were only holding their mother's signs. If it helped to bring attention to the signs and show that normal families support Ayn Rand, then so much the better. There has been no child abuse or exploitation.

This isn't anything at all like those leftist propaganda videos where children are given scripted, rehearsed lines as if they are speaking on behalf of their generation.

In this case, Jenn and her husband were going and the kids wanted to go, so they made a family outing of it. When they got there, the children wanted to hold signs too and one of the girls picked her sign because it was the pink one.
Betsy Speicher


Betsy's Law #1 - Reality is the winning side.

Betsy's Law #2 - In the long run you get the kind of friends -- and the kind of enemies -- you deserve.




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