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The Gender Reveal that Sparked Chaos

By Ella Malmgren

On Saturday, Sept. 5, a couple in California set off an explosion of blue smoke to conduct a gender reveal. Following this explosion, the El Dorado Fire formed in California. According to CNN, the fire has spread over 19,000 acres, and a firefighter died on Thursday, Sept. 17.

Right now, there are almost 8,000 fires raging across California, as well as fires roaming in Washington and Oregon. Wildfire season in California started in March this year, which is earlier than past years. It usually commences in July and ends in November. 

According to the New York Times, five out of the 10 most destructive fires in California history have taken place in 2020. These fires have resulted in millions of acres of land burning, buildings being destroyed, and lives lost. Residents in California have had to flee their houses, and the air quality is rapidly decreasing due to the smoke.

The causes of these fires are usually human-made. Droughts in California mix with hot winds that easily carry the flames over dry brush. The recent, extravagant gender reveal on Saturday, Sept. 5 was documented on social media, and the video quickly spread over Twitter and Tik Tok platforms. 

Many users online were horrified by this, and viewed this gender reveal as selfish and destructive. This sparks a question for the public – are gender reveals really necessary?

I think gender reveals are an exciting way to welcome a new life into a family. It’s fun to see the reactions of different family members and friends, and the family gets to picture what their future lives will look like. In recent years, they’ve gained popularity through social media videos and became a necessity in the pregnancy process.

In most cases they’re harmless. They just throw up some blue or pink confetti or break a balloon full of powder and call it a day. But in this case, this couple’s gender reveal resulted in someone losing their life and thousands of acres of land being destroyed.

Obviously the couple didn’t plan for this to happen, they just wanted to celebrate the future of their family. However, they need to become more informed about the environment they live in and the risk factors involved in explosions like this. I’m from Maryland and even I know about how easily fires can commence in California. 

Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in California on March 22, stating that California would be very susceptible to fires this season due to a mass die-off of trees. 

This is a major wake-up call, not only to residents of California but to everyone. We need to become more conscious of local issues, and what precautions we can all take to ensure the well-being of everyone in our communities. If the Californian couple was more aware of the increased vulnerability in their environment, they probably wouldn’t have carried through with the gender reveal. 

This gender reveal isn’t at fault for the thousands of fires that are occurring in California right now, but they did contribute to part of the destruction. The loss of a life could have easily been prevented if it weren’t for their ignorance.

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