AMBER Alert abuse

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maladroit
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by maladroit » Thu Sep 22, 2016 5:37 pm

In what way is BRC different, as relates to the actual issue at hand? Do the drugs walk off the printed newspaper page and try to go abduct kids?

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by BBadger » Thu Sep 22, 2016 10:08 pm

Those alerts are a nice idea, but seem pretty useless. Normal AMBER Alerts are usually to prevent kidnappers/people-the-kid-is-running-off-with (often parents in custody battles) from being able to drive off with the kid sitting in a seat. Other drivers are alerted to the appearance of the kidnapped person, the kidnapper, and the vehicle description. Time is of the essence in such cases.

I guess I could understand the shutdown in the middle of the week if someone is trying to leave with a kid or someone during the week. But exodus? Meh.

Unless there is some good use of that extra time going on at BRC, such as inspecting who is sitting in the passenger seat of vehicles, and something identifiable such as a known vehicle of the kidnapper ("be on the lookout for a large galleon flying a smiley face flag", but not "vehicle has bikes strapped to the back") exodus should just proceed as normal, especially as people are not leaving as a fast rate anyway.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by ygmir » Fri Sep 23, 2016 12:18 pm

perhaps the problem is not the procedure, and protocol, but in when to make the call?
Maybe Rangers and LE are too quick to make that call?
I do believe there can and should be a protocol for shutting off ingress and egress, for certain situations.
It may well be, that most of these situations don't call for an "amber alert", as such?
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by graidawg » Fri Sep 23, 2016 5:56 pm

if you are going to shut down the city, shut down the city - get the sound camps making announcements (and not playing music) get those megaphones at the theme camps shouting out the childs name. get up to 70,000 burners searching the city. I bet the missing child would be found pretty quick
trapping people (tired people who just came from a week long party an spent all day packing) in cars loaded to the point they can't get in the back and go to sleep or recline the seats and snooze - and cannot pull over or get out of the cars, for 6hours (on top of however long they are going to queue to leave) With no information, no assistance is just plain stupid. because once they do leave the city, they have nowhere to stop and get some sleep.

It a version of the trolley dillema, if you do nothing one child may be abducted or if you close the city many more people are put at risk - the child can't stop the abduction (without assistance) and the people queuing cant do anything either

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by BBadger » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:38 pm

graidawg wrote:if you are going to shut down the city, shut down the city - get the sound camps making announcements (and not playing music) get those megaphones at the theme camps shouting out the childs name. get up to 70,000 burners searching the city. I bet the missing child would be found pretty quick
trapping people (tired people who just came from a week long party an spent all day packing) in cars loaded to the point they can't get in the back and go to sleep or recline the seats and snooze - and cannot pull over or get out of the cars, for 6hours (on top of however long they are going to queue to leave) With no information, no assistance is just plain stupid. because once they do leave the city, they have nowhere to stop and get some sleep.

It a version of the trolley dillema, if you do nothing one child may be abducted or if you close the city many more people are put at risk - the child can't stop the abduction (without assistance) and the people queuing cant do anything either
THIS. Any part of of this alert that is not going to accomplish anything needs to go.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by maladroit » Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:30 pm

Fucking love it. "Amber" alert protocol means nobody has any fun until the kid is found (10 minutes later). If you're going to do it, then do something that will actually resolve the situation faster.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by GreyCoyote » Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:20 am

This isnt rocket science.

The exit process is already pulsing. About a thousand cars per pulse, spread over 16 lanes. All it takes is 8 people (one for every two lanes) walking beween the lanes and using their eyes. Most cars are packed to the gills with barely room for two so it shouldnt be hard. Motorhomes and busses get a quick chat with the driver. "We are looking for Suzy Smith. Any kids on board?"

For a sanity check, mount a pair of cameras at the choke point where you turn on to the pavement and have the parents watch while its being recorded. LEO's are already there. Bark a pullover order into a Motorola and its done, or have them intercepted just before the fork at Gerlach.

Finally, put a couple of electric message signs up: "Amber Alert: Suzy Smith Missing". Let drivers know in case someone got conned into giving the kid a ride. (I know some 15 year olds who can pass for mid-20's. The "abductor" may not realize he abducted someone).

All of this is fairly passive, cheaply done (or free), takes no additional time, and better accomplishes the goal.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by ygmir » Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:40 am

interesting the attitudes about this.

............
The exit process is already pulsing. About a thousand cars per pulse, spread over 16 lanes. All it takes is 8 people (one for every two lanes) walking beween the lanes and using their eyes. Most cars are packed to the gills with barely room for two so it shouldnt be hard. Motorhomes and busses get a quick chat with the driver. "We are looking for Suzy Smith. Any kids on board?"

For a sanity check, mount a pair of cameras at the choke point where you turn on to the pavement and have the parents watch while its being recorded. LEO's are already there. Bark a pullover order into a Motorola and its done, or have them intercepted just before the fork at Gerlach.........


really? yeah, that'd work........
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by GreyCoyote » Sat Sep 24, 2016 10:56 am

So whats the solution, Ygmir? Currently we have the entire exit line shutdown. Little Suzy may not show up for days. If you dont like this, then... what? What does a seasoned member of GP&E recommend, because the current solution seriously sucks.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by ygmir » Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:19 pm

well, with kids, I want to err on the side of caution.....

that said, to me, the solution is the event being 18 and over. full stop.

otherwise, I could see an egress,that was like ingress, with vehicle checks....yeah, it'd slow things, but not stop them........but the issue of getting a crew to gate "on call" would be challenging, for sure.

No easy answer, IMHO.

problem is subjectivity. do you call an alert for a 17? a 14? 9?........where do you draw the line? To me it has to be objective. And as such, it's "all or nothing".

I just know, as a parent, or one sympathetic to parents, I can not abide a half assed "search".
We do in total, and make sure....or remove the reasoning.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by GreyCoyote » Sat Sep 24, 2016 2:38 pm

Ygmir's concerns are valid. A vehicle-to-vehicle search by volunteers isnt an ideal configuration. I can agree with his assertion that it is kinda half-assed. So lets go forward with fixing this problem.

Consider the next logical group for doing this job: Gate. Facially, this kinda-sorta-almost works. Except for one thing: the last two years running I have been introduced to folks who got in without a ticket. Gate missed them. One has been coming for years this way. Never been caught. I'm not here to throw darts at our gate crew, but assuming we can discount this as mere juvenile puffery, then I should probably mention this year I was driving a 40 foot bus and the entire rear half, sealed-off from view, 20 feet in length, never even got a glance. I could have been carrying 5000 lbs of feathers, 4 nuclear warheads, and Jimmy Hoffa's mortal remains in there. No inspection. Same thing happened to the guy in front of me. So lets agree Gate is "half-assed" too. Certainly better than random volunteers, but when a childs life is on the line, we need PROFESSIONALS. Right?

So that leaves it up to the LEO's, because they dont do anything half-assed. They will demand a PAIR of officers per lane, relief officers, a "command" trailer, freezers stuffed with choco-tacos, and double overtime with hazard pay allowance and uniform cleaning and comp tickets for their wives and mistresses (on different days, of course). Dan Love will demand automatic weapons with belts for his guys, at least four elevated and sandbagged sniper positions (in case the Bundy's turn into Burners), and a separate trailer for doing cavity inspections (because, you know, "the missing girl was probable cause and the drug dog "hit" near his asshole, your Honor...") Eventually, some bean counter is going to notice they have 32 Exit Officers cooling their heels and eating donuts whenever an "Amber Alert" isnt running, so why not use them to search exiting vehicles for stolen bikes? Street signs? Leaky water tanks? Maybe run your plates/drivers license for warrants while we are waiting for our staff of volunteer "Leavers" (contrast: "greeters") clean your windshield and give you one more roll in the dust. Someone better call DPW and get them working on modifying some shipping containers for use as holding cells, kiddos, because many Burners may tend to have unpaid parking tickets.

Thus it would seem that our little experiment in temporary community got turned-in to a concentration camp. All because some little bunnyfuzz had a tantrum and went walkabout.

The only solution I can see that isnt "half-assed" is exactly what Ygmir & Doc have stated: get rid of the kids. That is the only sure-fire way to fix this. But it'll never happen. At least not until one of the little ones gets hurt, killed or disappears. Then the fallout will force BLM to do what the BMORG lacked the balls to do: make BM an 18 and older event.

Or we can do it half-assed. :mrgreen:
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by BBadger » Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:23 pm

Making the event over-18-only is a no-go. There's no point in even bringing it up. Though maybe on the tickets the disclaimer should also include "The event is not responsible for abductions."

The call is to be practical: the level of caution and action should match what is achievable. Cities aren't shut down in the default world because some kid was supposedly abducted. No, an alert is posted so people can keep an eye out while they carry on their business --and that's for abductions not just arriving home late.

The Amber Alert is an alert, not a quarantine. That's about as good as you can do. The whole point of the AA is to have a timely response to prevent an abductee from quickly leaving the area -- at highway speeds. In a place like BRC, however, with one narrow exit corridor anyway, adding even an hour to an exit process that is already sluggish and easily inspected is ridiculous. It's absolutely stupid especially at exodus when there is already ample time for checking vehicles. Only in off-hour exit times should there be delays implemented -- short delays -- for a cursory inspection of whomever is in a vehicle's seats.

To complement this process do what GC suggested: post signs informing people of the missing person, go out and inform people in line to keep their eyes open, do a cursory inspection of who is in the seats of vehicles as people leave (which is WAY more effort than what goes on in real Amber Alerts), and be done with it. People are waiting in line anyway. It's way more than one could ask for in any other Amber Alert and exit conditions are already facilitating these actions.

Oh, and short of some outrageous kidnapping, if this "Amber Alert" has to be used the parents/guardians should be fined for not watching their charges. The agreement is that kids are to be watched by their guardians for the duration of the event so that shit like this does not occur.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Captain Goddammit » Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:53 pm

I used to participate in the "Should kids be allowed at Burning Man" discussions on eplaya years ago, but that's all it is. Larry and the Org say the event is absolutely a family-friendly event (more proof they're disconnected and crazy!) and it's a moot point. The BM Org powers have stated very clearly this is an all-ages event.
For the record I very strongly disagree, minors do not belong there.
The only hope is that BLM will someday force it, but as the event waters down and mainstreams up, that gets further and further away. Plus, as the money trail expands, BM has more bargaining leverage with BLM. Banning the kids just won't happen.
So I'm with. BBadger, do the Amber Alerts more like the ones in the real world.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by GreyCoyote » Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:17 pm

The kids are an essential propaganda tool. That drum gets beat pretty hard every time Larry needs to wrap himself in the "we are not baby-eating-druggie-raver-Satanists" flag.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by maladroit » Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:15 pm

GreyCoyote wrote:The kids are an essential propaganda tool. That drum gets beat pretty hard every time Larry needs to wrap himself in the "we are not baby-eating-druggie-raver-Satanists" flag.
Of course a baby-eating-satanist would want to have children available when the munchies hit after a hard night of drug-raves.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by GreyCoyote » Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:58 pm

maladroit wrote:
GreyCoyote wrote:The kids are an essential propaganda tool. That drum gets beat pretty hard every time Larry needs to wrap himself in the "we are not baby-eating-druggie-raver-Satanists" flag.
Of course a baby-eating-satanist would want to have children available when the munchies hit after a hard night of drug-raves.
Hush now. You're giving me indigestion.... :mrgreen:
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by graidawg » Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:42 pm

OK it has degenerated into the usual stupidity, i am stepping out
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by sparr » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:28 pm

BBadger wrote:The call is to be practical: the level of caution and action should match what is achievable. Cities aren't shut down in the default world because some kid was supposedly abducted. No, an alert is posted so people can keep an eye out while they carry on their business --and that's for abductions not just arriving home late.

The Amber Alert is an alert, not a quarantine. That's about as good as you can do. The whole point of the AA is to have a timely response to prevent an abductee from quickly leaving the area -- at highway speeds. In a place like BRC, however, with one narrow exit corridor anyway, adding even an hour to an exit process that is already sluggish and easily inspected is ridiculous. It's absolutely stupid especially at exodus when there is already ample time for checking vehicles. Only in off-hour exit times should there be delays implemented -- short delays -- for a cursory inspection of whomever is in a vehicle's seats.
Obligatory reminder that the situation in BRC didn't even rise to the level to trigger an Amber Alert in the real world.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by BBadger » Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:19 am

sparr wrote:Obligatory reminder that the situation in BRC didn't even rise to the level to trigger an Amber Alert in the real world.
Yeah, a confirmed abduction, not just some kid who didn't make it back to camp. One would think that the thresholds for shutting down the event for a "missing person" would be even higher for BRC, a city bound by a bunch of disclaimers. At the very least the default-world guidelines should be used for an Amber Alert type shutdown at BRC. Y'know, because (from the link above):
"There are a number of specific criteria ... to prevent abuse of the system. The fear is that if AMBER ALERTS become common tools in law enforcement then the public will cease to pay attention to them."
Though I guess that's all out the window if we're forcibly held hostage by these "alerts."

I thought this was also quite relevant for discretion in utilizing the alerts:
"Also to be considered is the age of the child. AMBER ALERTS may be issued for the abductions of children '17 years of age or younger.' However this is the maximum age for issuing an AMBER ALERT and many States require that the abducted child be of an age much younger than that."
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by graidawg » Sun Sep 25, 2016 4:16 am

at what point during an amber alert does something happen for the peple in exodus? how long do people sit in their cars unable to move or return to, well anything before someone concludes that its now dangerous - and what gets done? is there a plan in place, or does BMorg not give a shit what happens once they leave the event?
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Sham » Sun Sep 25, 2016 5:34 am

I think the key word is ABDUCTED. This is very different than a older teen not making curfew. A lost toddler (and up to 14 or so years old) is a reason to panic, but not a 17 year old who was out on the town the night before.

The negative effects of a needless Amber Alert include missed plane flights at an airport that is booked SOLID for days after Burning Man, late car rental returns, rental cars returned dirty (cleaning fees), rental trucks not making it back in time to avoid penalties. Tens of thousands of drivers being even more fatigued, lack of porta-potties for the people waiting to exit, shortage of water and food in the exodus jams, vehicles running out of gas in the line, residual back-ups that could last another entire day, as only a single car exits at a time and many older playa type clunker vehicles just breaking down.

My personal thought is that we need a "Minister of Common Sense" who reviews major decisions like this that affects the entire population and brings some smarter recommendations to the table.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by sadie » Sun Sep 25, 2016 6:10 am

It would be interesting to know of this 'child' belongs to 'influential' parents.
Were they part of a P&P camp? I often see, and am always disgusted by, special
treatment given to (and often expected by) those with bottomless bank accounts.
I just wonder if issuing the Amber Alert was an attempt to suck up to a potential donor.
When it comes to protecting children it shouldn't make any difference whether they
are camping in a super deluxe rv fortress (/Park Ave) or in a dirty hippie blanket fort
(/"a trailor park"), but unfortunately it usually does.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Molotov » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:09 am

For those who espouse the "This Amber Alert fucked up Burning Man" consider this:

An abduction and homicide of any participant, let alone a minor, will probably be the end of Burning Man.


Period. Full Stop.

Let that sink in for a minute. There is no way the event could ever recover from the negative publicity that would follow. I mean, look, people are still talking about the stabbing death of Meredith Hunter at the 1969 Altamont Free Concert. (In all fairness, Mr. Hunter was stabbed to death after brandishing a handgun following several violent encounters with the contracted Hell's Angels security forces, and Angel Alan Passaro was acquitted of murder after a ruling of self defense. ) There were also two other deaths during the event due to a motor vehicle incident and another from drowning in a canal.

The Altamont Free Concert never returned to Altamont Raceway after the event and its aftermath.

So before we get all righteous and declare "This Must Never Happen Again" regarding the lost child protocol, think of the possible consequences.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by some seeing eye » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:13 am

Sham wrote:My personal thought is that we need a "Minister of Common Sense" who reviews major decisions like this that affects the entire population and brings some smarter recommendations to the table.
Yes! Chief common sense officer. But the BLM and Pershing County need that too...

Minor recovery is all written into the permit. So if you are disgrumpled, get that rewritten.

Many people have been critical of the presence of mobile cell service on the playa. GPS mobile tracking collars for minors is an argument for cell service, even a private experimental service. Any GPS receiver can pick up the coordinates. But it takes a mobile transmitter-receiver and coverage to provide that location to others.

A start is how many mobile tracking collars are we discussing?
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Token » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:28 am

Listen up all you breeders that drag children to BRC.

I'm pretty sure your entitled brats done never been on the raw end of a good ass-whoopin' , and that is a bloody shame.

Now it's likely too late too late start changing out the "timeout" for some effective discipline, but fur Dogs sake, strap a radio/GPS locator to their necks, preferably with the optional shock collar.

If I'm able to tell you where my fucking dogs are any time of day or night ...

Take responsibility!


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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by JohnEBGud » Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:56 pm

Molotov wrote:For those who espouse the "This Amber Alert fucked up Burning Man" consider this:

An abduction and homicide of any participant, let alone a minor, will probably be the end of Burning Man.


Period. Full Stop.
That's unfortunate because the system that is in place is neither an effective deterrent or solution. The only time closing the Gate Road would be effective in such a scenario would be if the abductor hadn't left the city before the victim was noticed missing. So except for high exit traffic times like Exodus, you've got maybe 30 minutes from the time of the abuction to lock down the city before the abductor can be out of the city.

Like many others, we spent nine hours on the Gate Road Sunday night and Monday morning. I'm neither pissed, annoyed, or bothered by that in any way. It's Burning Man. Shit Happens. But, during that time, we, and most others in that line, were both figuratively and literally in the dark. Nobody knew what was going on. No cars were being searched as far as we could tell. If there was an abducted kid in the car next to us, we wouldn't have known. Our camping mates who didn't leave until late Tuesday morning didn't find out about the closing until they arrived home two days later. In other words despite this "emergency" it was business as usual in BRC while the gate was closed.

If safety of minors from predators at the event is a concern, then more has to be done to increase the awareness of the population of a missing or abducted child than simply closing the gate and hoping for the best.
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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by maladroit » Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:02 pm

Molotov wrote:For those who espouse the "This Amber Alert fucked up Burning Man" consider this:

An abduction and homicide of any participant, let alone a minor, will probably be the end of Burning Man.


Period. Full Stop.

Let that sink in for a minute. There is no way the event could ever recover from the negative publicity that would follow.
I highly doubt that. People have died at (or near) Burning Man, some of them were young pretty people who died due to possibly preventable causes. And on a fairly regular basis since the event began. Many of the more strict policies in place are because someone died or was seriously and maybe permanently injured.

Fewer people die at Burning Man than die during a week in most other cities of 70,000. Fewer people are abducted (has there been a verifiable case yet?).

An abduction and murder is something that one person does, and that person will receive the blame. There is no possible way to make the claim that it was a uniquely Burning Man occurrence.

The most that could happen is if there were a rash of child abductions, Larry might have to give up on the family-friendly aspect of the event. I personally don't mind kids around if their parents are on mission, so that would be sad.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by maladroit » Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:33 pm

I'll point out that everyone is bitching about the shutdown where it was a 17 year old and it was for hours at a time. No one is bitching about the earlier 14 year old that shut down Gate for no more than an hour. So somewhere in between, on either the age or the length of shutdown, is the threshold that the community at large considers reasonable.

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Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Captain Goddammit » Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:25 pm

People have been killed a few times on Mutant Vehicles and they aren't banned. There are a few minimal safety rules in place regarding barriers and lights around the trailer hitch area, thats about it.

Just to throw it in there because it's related... I throw a $1500 camper on the back of my truck and I am all set with a kitchen, bathroom and bed if I get screwed in a 9 hour line delay. Radical self reliance and all...
GreyCoyote: "At this rate it wont be long before he is Admiral Fukkit."

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Popeye
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 10:39 pm
Burning Since: 2013
Camp Name: Beaverton
Location: Where the east wind blows

Re: AMBER Alert abuse

Post by Popeye » Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:37 pm

We have six pages of mostly agreement that the Amber Alert System should be changed. I doubt that anyone at the Org is paying much attention to Eplaya right now. How many have have contacted http://burningman.org/event/feedback/ where their thoughts might actually be heard?
Eplaya is a great resource for "how to" information and when we look for community consensus but is anyone who can make changes listening to Eplaya?
nobody wants to live in a world with only one flavor...

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