Breastfeeding in public is legal.
Not only that, it should not be compared to other natural functions of the body, like urination, defecation, or even–recently heard by yours truly–decomposition. Because poop isn’t food, despite what your dog might think. Breastmilk is.
Unfortunately, many people are still ignorant of this fact and continue to whine about mamas feeding their children in public. So I thought I’d share a few counterpoints, just for the anti-breastfeeding-in-public crowd.
Starting with this:
See, it’s not so much about a woman’s right to breastfeed in public or her supposed “need” to expose herself. It should also be viewed as the child’s right to eat.
Here are a couple of common points I like to make about breastfeeding in public:
- I’ll breastfeed my child in the bathroom–where people defecate–when people with poor table manners pick up their plates and meet me there. Because I find that offensive. (Wait, legally I can’t send them there? huh.)
- Try putting a cover on your baby’s head in August (or December for some babies, for that matter). Baby gets p.o.’ed, screams. Mom is left uncovered. The cover is gone, and now she’s showing everything. Real smooth. Thanks for the suggestion that we “cover up.”
- If you don’t like a woman practicing her legal and protected right to breastfeed in public, put a blanket over your own damn head!
- Don’t look.
- “Be discreet.” I pointed out in a post yesterday that “discreet” is like art: It’s defined by the viewer. Why don’t we simply let our babies eat peacefully and quietly without all the rules on just what is “proper” looming over their heads. Tell me, is it more “proper” to have a screaming child in public or to breastfeed a hungry one? And, uh, would you mind if I used Hugh Hefner’s version of “properly covered”?
- Many women show more breasts walking down the street than I show while my child eats.
- A great comment I found in response on an anti-BFing-in-public blog (analogy works for gay couples, too):
Compare your discomfort to…discomfort seeing interracial couples. I mean, they don’t have to FLAUNT that they are together, right? They could be DISCREET about their relationship so as not to disturb the people around them. Wait. That’s bigotry. Bigotry is wrong.
- Women don’t breastfeed to make other people uncomfortable, period. In fact, nursing is for the opposite effect.
- And finally, if logic is still escaping you, check out this PSA:
Follow me on Twitter, where we can discuss “flashing” in public some more!