Friday, February 22, 2008

Mass Mobilization in Jefferson Parish?

Those teenagers are all kinds of fed up.

From the Times-Picayune: Teens plan boycott of Clearview Mall

The fight against a new curfew for teenagers at Clearview Mall has gone viral with more than 1,000 young people organizing themselves online and calling for a boycott of the Metairie shopping center this weekend.

Rise Against the Clearview Age Ban, or RACAB, was founded on Saturday, a day after officials at Clearview began strictly enforcing its Parental Escort Policy. Under the rule, patrons 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult who is at least 21-years-old when arriving at the mall on Fridays and Saturdays from 4 p.m. until closing.

"It's being too strict, too quick," said Matt Shaver, 17 of Jefferson, who set up RACAB's online group forum via the social Web site MySpace. "I want to be able to hang out with my friends that are under 16 on the weekends."

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Shaver said he created the organization to express his opposition to the escort policy, which he refers to as a ban. Within hours of its formation, the group had 500 members. On Wednesday evening, some 1,093 people had signed on as members of the group. Most of the support is local, but Shaver said he's received e-mails from around the country.

On the Web site, Shaver makes it clear that the forum was not created to complain about ill-treatment by mall security nor a place to advocate anarchy against the mall. The site is intended to help organize like-minded teens and speak out against the escort policy.

Shaver said he's upset because the mall is putting an age-limit on maturity.

"How are you going to say 16 and under are less mature than 18-year-olds that are committing murders and stuff and selling dope outside of Clearview?" he asked.

Shaver said there's very little for teens 14 and under to do in Metairie on weekend evenings. Effectively banning them from the mall would send them to other shopping centers. He wondered whether the mall could have taken any other action.

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I had a couple of false starts writing about this.

I just wanted to unload some of my hatred for suburban America, Jefferson Parish, and consumerism amongst young people.

Of course there's nothing else for a kid to do in Jefferson Parish than go to the mall...

yada yada yada...


But, you know what? I'm into this kid. He's awesome. Way to go, Matt Shaver.

Fight this policy. It's profiling, it's unfair.

Young people are a critical consumer demographic, a boycott is an interesting idea.

And isn't it cool how we can use myspace and facebook to get these things together quickly and quietly?


I already boycott Clearview Mall for a laundry list of reasons but I'm reiterating that boycott and calling for solidarity and vigilance with the teen-aged protesters of Jefferson Parish.

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Maybe Matt Shaver could use his expertise to help organize a boycott of all malls... forever.

I hope he's aware that even if he defeats this curfew/escort policy, Clearview Mall will still be a pathetic place to hang out. Clearview Mall will still fail to provide meaningful public space. Clearview Mall will still disgust me and epitomize everything I hate about my country.

But by all means, fight the policy. If you live in Jefferson Parish, you're kind of stuck with malls.

I'm lucky to have only lived in places where the mall does not represent an important social space.

UPDATE!!!!!!!!!!!

Jeffrey reports
that the protesters of Clearview Mall are actually terrorists! Some jerk kid apparently said he was going to shoot up the mall, according to the T-P.

Hear that?

That's the sound of a condominium still standing.

1 comment:

Puddinhead said...

Of course, Clearview hasn't said that the under-16 crowd can't enter their Mall at all...only that their parents can't drop them off there unattended, expecting mall security, tenants, and those adult shoppers who are there to chaperone their children for them.