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It's SUMMER! Sidewalk Chalk Intactivism, Anyone?

post #1 of 51
Thread Starter 
I was just thinking today, at the park, where lots of families gather and play...whether it might be thought-provoking to use sidewalk chalk to write some simple phrases like, "Question Circumcision", "NOCIRC.ORG", etc.

Thoughts?

This could even be done at a time when the area is less crowded, in preparation for a time (like when school lets out, people get off work, holidays and weekends) when it's going to be swarming with parents.

Jen
post #2 of 51
If I were to see that at the park (if I were someone not informed on the issue), I would think it was a pervert and plug for a porn site. Not really the kind of publicity you'd be going for. I would probably also have reported it to the park security and asked that it be removed.
post #3 of 51
Thread Starter 
NOCIRC.ORG sounds porny to you? Really? Maybe a few qualifiers like, "Protect children." or "Babies are people too." would help?

Jen
post #4 of 51
I am always so nervous about a child reading it and questioning their parents I know that it is an issue that needs to be discussed, but even my strong feelings about RIC, I don't want a child that was already harmed to feel uncomfortable in their skin...(I want the parents to feel uncomfortable)
post #5 of 51
Thread Starter 
It might be interesting to try it and then observe reactions for a bit from a distance.

Jen
post #6 of 51
Quote:
TelleBear: I am always so nervous about a child reading it and questioning their parents I know that it is an issue that needs to be discussed, but even my strong feelings about RIC, I don't want a child that was already harmed to feel uncomfortable in their skin...(I want the parents to feel uncomfortable)
a Freudian slip.
post #7 of 51
I could try it @ pioneer park on thursday! I would have to think of the right things to -say- and I think it would be good for kids to see it then hopefully when they -get older they will research than be filled with lies from the pro-circ parents kwim ? I don't think it's underming the children by posting -the Question Circumcision because Circumcision itself is undermining children & the males by making them be defined and sterotyped as only a "penis person'.
post #8 of 51
Thread Starter 
I agree...I think if the words were chosen carefully, it would be good. It's not like any of us are going to write, "Ask mommy if she mutilated you."

Besides, the kids would have to be old enough to read in order to ask, and parents *should* be held accountable by their children for this choice. If they didn't know any better, that's understandable and children are typically quite forgiving. The most important thing though, and the reason for my suggestion, is to get adults researching and prevent future children from being harmed.

Jen
post #9 of 51
I don't think it will have the intended effect at all. It sounds creepy and pervy. I will have circing discussions with my children when I feel it's appropriate and not because someone writes messages on the sidewalk. If I were mainstream, it would definitely turn me off to the cause even further.
post #10 of 51

I don't think it will spur typical parents on to do more research

Quote:
Originally Posted by Artisan View Post
I don't think it will have the intended effect at all. I will have circing discussions with my children when I feel it's appropriate and not because someone writes messages on the sidewalk. If I were mainstream, it would definitely turn me off to the cause even further.
I have to agree. Some people will probably think some weirdo out there is trying to push the idea in an inappropriate place/time. Plus a lot of parents probably won't come up with a sensitive explanation right on the spot there...they may just get offended and tell their kid that people who don't circ are crazy fanatics.

There could be more effective places and opportunities, maybe striking up conversations with pregnant moms, leaving brochures/magazines/books/bumper stickers in the hospital maternity wards or wherever childbirth classes are held or OB doctor's offices or WIC offices or at a midwive's place or at a maternity clothing section or even in a ped waiting room. Or maybe at some colleges, where a lot of young people could learn about circ before becoming parents. Those are all places that I wish I would have run across the information in time.

You may think that you are forcing people to face the truth by writing on the sidewalk, but it may just make some guilty parties extra determined to promote circ to all their friends and relatives.
post #11 of 51
I would just think that the only people who'd see it would be kids/parents who've already made the decision. Maybe in front of a mall....but park/playground...probably already a done deal.
post #12 of 51
Thread Starter 
Many families have more than one child, so a park made sense to me...Parents with young children who may in many cases may be planning more children. Another option would be focusing on areas were teens gather.

Jen
post #13 of 51
I think it might work more than you think. Just like bumper stickers and t-shirts get people to thinking. I like "CIRCUMCISION HURTS BABIES" in big letters. Hmm, DS and I might head to the park today...
post #14 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by vaughnmama View Post
There could be more effective places and opportunities, maybe striking up conversations with pregnant moms, leaving brochures/magazines/books/bumper stickers in the hospital maternity wards or wherever childbirth classes are held or OB doctor's offices or WIC offices or at a midwive's place or at a maternity clothing section or even in a ped waiting room. Or maybe at some colleges, where a lot of young people could learn about circ before becoming parents. Those are all places that I wish I would have run across the information in time.

You may think that you are forcing people to face the truth by writing on the sidewalk, but it may just make some guilty parties extra determined to promote circ to all their friends and relatives.
ITA. Random messages (which will likely be removed) are not going to be nearly as effective as thoughtful information posted in an appropriate place. This strategy will only be perceived as crazy.
post #15 of 51
Thread Starter 
Well, you know, I'm sure kids see my "Circumcision? No way baby!" and "Today's Parents Say NO To Circumcision NOCIRC.ORG" bumpersticker all the time, driving or parked. I see cars behind me all the time, a little boy or girl in the front passanger seat. There will always be those that think demanding equal protection for male children from genital mutilation is "crazy"; that won't deter me from activism. We've had threads about leafletting books at the library and in stores that sell books and I think most posters were very positive.

I appreciate all the feedback, though. Again, I think if a child is old enough to read/comprehend an intactivism slogan and asks their parents about it, they deserve an answer. If telling a child the truth makes a parent uncomfortable, GOOD.

The most important thing, however, is to reach teens, young people, expectant parents, families that will have more children in the future, men who have been harmed, and anyone who may ever be in a position of influence regarding this issue.

A park is simply a public place. I think public places, especially those that attract those of childbearing age, is a perfect place for intactivism. The only way to test out a tactic is to try it, and if possible, observe reactions. That could easily be done with a sidewalk chalk message...IMO, it's not that much different than a bumper sticker and it's a whole lot more subtle than a billboard.

Jen

PS. Artisan: Slightly OT, but do you have boys? Have you faced this decision before? You don't have a siggy and when I searched the forum I couldn't find anywhere where you'd shared your story. Of course, only answer if you feel comfortable. I'm just curious.
post #16 of 51
Obviously, it's your decision to post messages in a park. My point is that you will likely be hurting your cause rather than helping it. Kids who ask questions from uneducated parents will likely receive a response about the perverts in the park or about why they were circumcized. Even kids who can't read (like my son) will likely ask what the writing says. Again, an uneducated parent will provide an uneducated response.

Observing reactions is not going to work. People may not look at the message, clap their hand to their forehead and run screaming in the opposite direction. But they can think to themselves, "What creepy people visited the park this morning?" I think to best effect change, you need to be seen as CREDIBLE. Credibility doesn't come from scrawling messages in chalk.
post #17 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artisan View Post
I think to best effect change, you need to be seen as CREDIBLE. Credibility doesn't come from scrawling messages in chalk.
:
post #18 of 51
Thread Starter 
I think a link to a website like NOCIRC.ORG is very credible, but, whatever. Nobody seems to agree with me so I'll let this thread make it's way into the archive.

Jen
post #19 of 51
I would totally do that on my sidewalk and driveway but probably not at the park. At the park it seems a little too much like graffiti to me.

Laura
post #20 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by vaughnmama View Post
I have to agree. Some people will probably think some weirdo out there is trying to push the idea in an inappropriate place/time. Plus a lot of parents probably won't come up with a sensitive explanation right on the spot there...they may just get offended and tell their kid that people who don't circ are crazy fanatics.

There could be more effective places and opportunities, maybe striking up conversations with pregnant moms, leaving brochures/magazines/books/bumper stickers in the hospital maternity wards or wherever childbirth classes are held or OB doctor's offices or WIC offices or at a midwive's place or at a maternity clothing section or even in a ped waiting room. Or maybe at some colleges, where a lot of young people could learn about circ before becoming parents. Those are all places that I wish I would have run across the information in time.

You may think that you are forcing people to face the truth by writing on the sidewalk, but it may just make some guilty parties extra determined to promote circ to all their friends and relatives.
:
It's no different than any other kind of graffiti. I think most people will just see the defacing public property aspect of it and ignore the message.
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