Deadly Gender Reveal Party Burns Down Half of California


Elizabeth Nikol Sargsyan, Staff Writer

On September 7, 2020, a massive fire in Yucaipa was ignited by a pyrotechnic device that at first started as a minor bushfire–only to quickly turn into a devastating nightmare for many Southern Californians. As of September 20, the fire in Yucaipa, also known as the El Dorado Fire, has spread to a record-breaking 22,489 acres of burnt land. The containment level is currently at 59%, with the fire burning at a rate as fast as 1000 acres per half hour.

This is not the first time that California has seen such a devastating wild-fire caused by something as foolhardy as a gender-reveal party. The last one was an Arizona fire in 2017, caused by the exact same thing, with the couple now forced to pay a staggering $8 million in damages. Such a fire could have been easily and narrowly avoided if not for the stupid and foolish actions of two idiots.

Many citizens are not only furious, but outraged, that such a poorly-executed idea could have ever led to the destruction of thousands of wildlife and the mass evacuation of hundreds of homes. Even the creator of gender reveal parties, Jenna Karvunidis, had enough and spoke out, saying, “Stop having these stupid parties. For the love of God, stop burning things down to tell everyone about your kid’s penis. No one cares but you.” 

Overall, the California couple that caused this new fire should be charged for these offenses, especially due to the fact that they neglected to notify the authorities when the fire was still in its prime, and it could have been stopped early on.  

But at the heart of this issue is the topic of gender reveal parties. In this case, they are not only a danger to the general public in any area, but they are especially dangerous in areas where wildlife is present (as in desert states). These parties will not only destroy many more lives and homes, if such risky behaviors continue, but they can cause irreversible damage to the land, akin to that of the Australia fires.

Gender reveal parties also further reinforce the mindset of certain couples who want to continue to push the boundaries of “regular gender reveals”. Often, they want to make more outrageous reveals for the sake of landing a chance of getting big YouTube clicks or internet views. This chance should not be taken at all, especially at the risk of ruining so many lives.

One of the biggest things couples use to celebrate the gender reveal of their child is fireworks and smoke grenades. A large majority, however, choose to ignorantly or grossly overestimate the damage that these devices can create for the sake of a simple reveal. Not only can the misuse of such devices cause lifelong scarring, but even in cases such as Pamela Kreimeyer, it can cause instant death. In this case, she was instantly struck in the head by a shrapnel caused by the explosive. She died on impact.

Lastly, many also argue and criticize that the rise of these notorious gender reveal parties are putting a lot of focus upon the traditional forms of a gender binary, and this brings forth lots of misrepresentations, especially old and outdated gender stereotypes.

Therefore, parents should always follow the proper guidance for pyrotechnic devices when used in certain celebrations like these, or the state of California should outright ban them in certain areas where wildfires are more prevalent. Most importantly, the banning of such trends should be done immediately in order to get people to realize the destructive footprints that they leave behind on our community. For once, I believe we would all greatly benefit from people not following stupidly dangerous trends.