Tuesday, October 23, 2012

AAP TRADE SHOW 2012: What Went Down in N'Orleans

In earlier posts I wrote about how the AAP has effectively tried to silence critics of its latest position statement on infant circumcision. It has refused to publish letters of opposition, and it banned the presence of Intact America at their trade show in New Orleans.

In my last post, I wrote that, not satisfied with having kicked out Intact America, the AAP was trying to silence protesters outside of the facilities where they were having their get-together.

The details of what exactly went down are now available. (I first accessed them here.)

It should give readers an insight on the prevailing attitudes of the leadership at the AAP.

Intact America's very own Georgeanne Chapin recounts what happened first-hand:

Saturday, the second day of our protest, two AAP officials convened with police and security guards in front of the convention center. A couple of Intactivists were able to overhear some of the conversation. They asked the police if we could not be forced to leave the area. The police told them no, that we were marching on public property, and that we were breaking no laws.

I actually went up to the man, extended my hand, and introduced myself as Georgeanne Chapin, executive director of Intact America. He refused to shake my hand and said, "So what?"

I said I just wanted to introduce myself and I would like to know his name. He said, "I don't agree with anything you do or say," turned on his heel, and walked away.

We had the equivalent of an outdoor, public booth across from the Center; it was a streetcorner, next to an outdoor parking lot, which was next to a Marriott Hotel. On Friday, we had received permission from the lot owner to hang our "I Did Not Consent" banner, and other signs on the chain link fence.

AAP demonstration 2012
                    Picture: Intact Lousiana
Around an hour after the AAP officials' unsuccessful attempt to get rid of us, the valet from the Marriott came and told us that the owner of the parking lot said we were trespassing and had to take the banner and signs down.

Dan Bollinger asked to speak with the owner who "didn't have time" to talk with us, but asked the valet if he could give us the guy's number. Dan called him (turns out it was the manager, not the owner), and had a very pleasant conversation, which ended in him agreeing to extend the permission for us to have the signs up for two more days. (We paid him a small fee.) 

We are certain that the AAP also had complained to the Marriott, which is what sparked them to contact the parking lot manager (who clearly felt he didn't owe the AAP anything). Very nice. All of that said, we had some good conversations, and I felt that by being on the street rather than in the convention exhibit hall, we were free to say all the things we believe.

So there you have it.

Make of the details what you will.

Why do they refuse to publish letters of opposition?

Why did they ban Intact America from their trade show?

But most of all, why did they want have the protesters removed from the premises?

Going as far as trying to get NOPD to remove them from public property?

If the AAP is so confident in its new statement, then what is it so afraid of?

To me, these are the actions of guilty criminals squirming under the light of scrutiny.

The AAP has released a horrendously flawed statement they cannot actually substantiate, they know it, and they don't want to be confronted with anybody who can give them a run for their money.

Sooner or later something's gotta give.

They can't keep the truth hidden forever.

1 comment:

  1. Yesterday morning, (Monday)I happened to be in the parking lot getting something out of my car. The manager drove by me in a car and asked if the Intactivist signs & others items like extra clothes, food, etc, if those were discarded because they were inside the fence side of the parking lot. I said we were having trouble with the wind blowing things away, she said "no problem," just wanted to make sure it wasn't stuff to be thrown out, and smiled at me. She was a very pleasant Indian woman, most like Hindu, and put off very good vibes. I don't think she complained to the Marriott at all, the marriott was bluffing. ~Brother K