Recently the media is latching on to the topic of breastfeeding mothers in public places. As one mother in Texas belligerently challenges a young woman to “do something about it” when she was asked to come into the office or find a more comfortable and discreet place to nurse her newborn instead of standing in the middle of a group of children ages 5 to 13, I started to ask myself what’s really the issue? Are people being really mean to breastfeeding mothers? Should breastfeeding be taken out of the public view or are some women looking for attention in all the wrong places?
As a woman and a mother I totally understand the desire to give your baby the very best and the subject of breast vs. bottle has been going around and around since my children were babies and I am sure long before. But it’s just been recently that women have taken their soapboxes and started challenging onlookers to say something about it. Dozens of stories have surfaced of employees feeling very uncomfortable already trying to do their jobs and ask a nipple flashing woman to think of other people and cover up. You don’t see it aired that way do you? No, more commonly you see news media blasting airlines, restaurants, and other public places for being in the wrong towards innocent earthy breastfeeding Mommies. There is a war going on between nursing mothers and people who value decency and privacy and the media is just fueling the rage.
In Baltimore, Maryland one group of outraged Mommies held a “Nurse-In” in the middle of an airport and drew a lot of attention their direction. At BWI, about 25 nursing mothers and their 25 nursing children have attracted worldwide attention. American Airlines is drawing the scorn of mothers who nurse their newborns, reports CBS Baltimore after a woman was asked to cover her breast with a provided blanket. Excuse me? You mean to tell me that 25 adult women were allowed to cause a public scene at an airport and nobody was thrown out, patted down, or escorted off the property? These adults were drawing worldwide attention and putting the safety of thousands of passengers at risk who were expecting that the security at this airport was doing their job in keeping terrorist and suspicious activity not babysitting spoiled self-serving “The Milkmakers” ( yes, that is the name they gave themselves )
So let me see if I understand. A group of women gather at an airport without tickets or reason to be there and cause a scene. They draw in video cameras and reporters to talk to them and thus causing everyone else in the airport to try to find out what is going on and not paying attention to unattended bags, suspicious activity, etc. Interesting…. I just came from flying back and forth several times this summer and I have to tell you that the airport is one place you shouldn’t screw around in. Stand in the wrong line and you will have some attendant redirecting you with a firm voice and angry scowl and you had better be quick in taking off your shoes and getting ready for that security line or else everyone else will give you a piece of their mind. Oh and you DO NOT video security or really anything else in the airport because that will not be tolerated. But today a group of 25 protestors whipped out their nipples and screamed at the top of their lungs about their rights to do so and dared people to say or do something about it. That is ridiculous.
So what did American Airlines have to say about all of this? “We apologize to the breastfeeding mother who was offered a blanket during a recent flight by a well-intentioned flight attendant. The intent was to make everyone on board comfortable,” American said. So what about the other people on the plane that had to listen to the ranting and raving woman who threw a tantrum? Where they issued apologies from the woman for her disruptive behavior? And why is she so special that she gets a free pass to expose herself to whomever might be next to her whenever she sees fit? I was a nursing mother, I had nursing shirts and pretty awesome blankets that made nursing more comfortable for me and other people and I am pretty sure I didn’t purposely flash a nip at anyone in public. So what is so wrong with other women being asked to follow the same rules of decency that we have agreed on as a society? There are quite a few people who are raising their own voices to speak out about this and asking that their feelings be considered as well.
I’m fine with breastfeeding, but cover up. I’m not okay with indecent exposure.
You want to breastfeed in public, correct? But you DON’T want to respect other people’s feelings who don’t want to see it, correct?? You have a right to your feelings, but guess what, so do they.
But you say that breastfeeding is natural and beautiful. I agree. For some families it is a wonderful intimate moment between mother and child and that special bond shouldn’t be shameful. And for some families breastfeeding isn’t for them and they have just as special of a connection with their children as anyone else. Breastfeeding really isn’t the issue at all. The issue is this is a case where some people assume that their rights are more important than anyone else’s. Breastfeeding is natural, just like sex, bowel functions, and even farting. Yet we ask that people be polite in public and keep those things out of public situations. I wouldn’t be comfortable sitting in a restaurant with someone having a particularly loud gas episode. These are the rules of our society that we are choosing to live in. Yes, other countries have different views on the breasts, the body, nudity, ect. But in case it was forgotten, these women throwing the fits do not live in those societies and are not forbidden as far as I know from leaving this one that frowns on bouncing bared boobies at the Chic-Fil A.
But yet day after day we are told by the media and these vocal advocates that we don’t really have a right to say we don’t want to see giant engorged breasts waved around like drunk party girls on the dance floor. Dare we have the right to say, hey… keep your boobies to yourself, your spouse and your baby… I don’t really want to see them? No…
One commenter even had this to say:
Do you expect everything you are offended by to be covered up because of your personal feelings? What puts your personal beliefs above the basic human rights of an infant?
Which made me wonder if all of these women were so pro-infant, pro-basic human rights, are they also against abortion that certainly does not have any concern about the rights of human infants at all? Truthfully I doubt it, because again people just want to have what they want and anyone who doesn’t agree with them is against women, against human rights, and against freedom.
So apparently like it or not, on your next flight, date night dinner, or soccer practice the person next to you could be passing the boobies and you can’t say anything at all about it.
What do you think? Play nice!
- Breastfeeding Mom Confronts Woman Who Told Her to Stop (newsfixnow.com)
- Breastfeeding moms plan “Nurse In” at BWI (wjla.com)