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< UPDATE: Protesters heading back towards Capitol | Main | Points of (non) privilege >

Fun for the whole family

Posted at 7:36 PM on September 4, 2008 by Molly Bloom (0 Comments)

MPR's Melody Ng (of Melody's Olympics fame) wrote this post on what to do with the kids and pets when protesting:

"Who would bring their kids to a protest???!" One of our colleagues was outraged at seeing parents pushing strollers past police in riot gear on Monday and Tuesday. Not a big deal--some might say an educational, family experience, even--during a peace march. But what about after one's seen photos of tear gas clouds?

Today during the Youth Against War and Racism's "March to Arrest the War Criminals" (the rally for which high school and college students were supposed to walk out of class), we watched a Saint Bernard on leash loll past our building, just behind the chanting students.

So what's proper protest protocol? When do you decide to leave the pets and kids at home?

The RNC Welcoming Committee, the anarchist group that we've been hearing about all week as they go about the mission of "crash[ing] the convention," seems to have thought through the kid safety issue. Its Web site seeks volunteer childcare providers during the RNC. It also reassures "radical parents" that they can protest away (from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. when the childcare center is open), confident in the knowledge that their kids are under the care of people with "significant childcare experience," have plenty of "child-friendly, outdoor space," and are noshing on "vegetarian or vegan food and organic milk." Parents are just supposed to pre-register so organizers know how many kids to expect.

And apparently some parents have taken advantage of this offer. The person who answered the phone for the RNC Welcoming Committee just now (he said he couldn't give me his name) said at any given time one to about six kids, ages 2-6, are on site with several volunteers looking after them.

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