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Intactivists take message skyward at Berkeley Kite Festival

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Birth expos, street fairs, protests: These are all places one frequently sees members of Bay Area Intactivists working to end infant circumcision and other forms of forced genital cutting. But the human rights group made an unexpected appearance this year at the Berkeley Kite Festival in an attempt to reach a new audience. The event was inspired by longtime Bay Area Intactivists member Frank McGinness who had suggested the group do outreach at the annual kite event in Berkeley. The two-day festival, which takes place every July, draws families from around the bay area who come to fly their own kites as well as to watch the massive kites being flown by the event organizers.

The intactivists came armed with literature, stickers, and kites sporting their message. They planted their flag, literally, at the foot of a gently sloping hill in César Chávez Park and launched their kites into the sky. It didn't take long for festival attendees to take notice and begin taking pictures. One young mother approached the group to express her gratitude for their work. After several hours, the intactivists concluded their successful day of outreach, hopeful that some children would be saved as a result.

Bay Area Intactivists members Jonathon Conte, Benjamin Selfridge, Frank McGinness, Danielle Cruzen, and Tom Joseph hold a kite in front of a genital autonomy flag at the Berkeley Kite Festival.
Bay Area Intactivists member Jonathon Conte holds up a kite which reads "Circumcision harms men."
Bay Area Intactivists member Anja Schenkel holds up a kite which reads "Say NO to circumcision."