Breastfeeding in Public Is Vulgar, Says Childless Politician Who Wants You to Cover Up Now

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breastfeedingThis month a Texas legislator introduced an exciting new bill protecting breastfeeding moms. Her bill would actually make it illegal to harass a woman who's breastfeeding in public! I love it, a lot of moms love it, but not everyone is a fan. One of the bill's loudest opponents is a woman. State Representative Debbie Riddle posted what she really thinks about the bill on her Facebook page. She says she supports breastfeeding in theory, but she thinks women should be "modest." 

Oh good lord, Debbie! You are part of the problem. You are the reason why we need this law in the first place.

More from The Stir: 11 Things Never to Say to Breastfeeding Moms

Riddle's opinion got her over 1000 comments. Many were snarky and exasperated and angry, which is probably why she removed the post from her Facebook page. But here's a screenshot.

debbie riddle breastfeeding bill

Oh, if only people would simply be considerate and thoughtful of others we would need no laws against murder and theft as well! You could use the very same argument against her. If people would simply be considerate and thoughtful of breastfeeding women we wouldn't need this bill!

You know what I wish? I wish people didn't have such hangups about seeing a woman breastfeeding. I mean, we're okay with celeb sideboob, we're okay with cleavage out to there, but if we happen to catch a tiny bit of boob while a woman is feeding her child -- that's vulgar. It's only vulgar if you use your boob for non-sexual purposes. 

Anyway, the vast majority of women who dare (!!!) breastfeed in public are pretty discreet about it. I know there's the rare mom who doesn't mind whipping out the whole thing out the top of her shirt, but so what? In that context, it's just kind of blah anyway. It happens, children don't faint, and we all move on with our lives unscathed. I still think that exposure is worth the trauma if it means more women will breastfeed their babies.

Do you agree with Rep. Riddle, or do you think she just doesn't get it?

 

Image via Mothering Touch/Facebook

 

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Flori... Floridamom96

She did not say breastfeeding in public is vulgar. You are lying. What a surprise. If I lived in her district I would vote for her. An individual's right to breastfeed does not supercede a business's right to decide with whom to do business.

redK8... redK8blueSt8

I completely agree with the Representative. A bill that would allow for lawsuits if  one "interfered" really IS going too far! Anyone who asked a woman to be discrete and not flopping her whole boob out (does happen) could be sued?Just what exactly is considered interfering and who gets to decide? The mom? The judge? So subject to interpretation. Ridiculous overkill.


The examples you give are not fully valid, because they are based on the assumption that side boob and cleavage "out to there" aren't also brought up as inappropriate.  I am sick of the breastfeeding-rights drum being beaten as if it is the holy grail of rights that no one better dare negatively comment on.

nonmember avatar Kacie

Actually, it does. You cannot refuse service to someone based on their race or gender. If you refuse service to someone because they are breastfeeding, you are refusing service because of their gender and parental status.

I've always thought people that opposed breastfeeding opposed the idea of mothers as people - they seem to be so offended by someone attempting to have a normal life with an infant that to me (this is just my opinion) they seem to want women barefoot at home, taking care of the babies and fixing supper...

nonmember avatar Kacie

Actually, it does. You cannot refuse service to someone based on their race or gender. If you refuse service to someone because they are breastfeeding, you are refusing service because of their gender and parental status.

I've always thought people that opposed breastfeeding opposed the idea of mothers as people - they seem to be so offended by someone attempting to have a normal life with an infant that to me (this is just my opinion) they seem to want women barefoot at home, taking care of the babies and fixing supper...

nonmember avatar Meg

I too am sick of the pro-breast feeding movement. I am not " the problem ". I am just a woman with an opinion.

Laura Palmer

redK8bluest8 I could not agree more, no one said breastfeeding is vulgar, what people find vulgar is the women (and there are more than a few) that just flop out the whole boob for the whole world to see with no regard for anyone around them. They only thing the rep was asking was for women to be discreet, I mean it couldn't be made any easier with hooter hiders and specialty nusing tops. I mean I am a mother myself, but I am modest enough not to expose my chest to the entire world.

IKnow... IKnow0101

I don't believe breastfeeding is vulgar, however I do have to be considerate to those around me.  Wearing a cover to breastfeed is not to much to ask and also a business owner have the right to ask you to cover yourself if it's interfering with their customers.  Why is this such a great debate?  It's becoming a tired subject and we should move on from the breastfeeding in public/ coverup/ bottle feeding debate.

miche... micheledo

I agree with her - but the problem is what is her opinion of immodest??


Honestly, if someone were in my home or business (which I don't have) and removed their shirt to breastfeed (I know, I know, highly unlikely, but bear with me!) I would want to have the freedom to ask them to nurse with their shirt on, WITHOUT fearing being arrested or sued.  


I want women to have the right to breastfeed in public and I nurse in public all the time.  But it makes me nervous to see a law that allows you to prosecute those who might say something against it.

nonmember avatar Leslie

Why are breasts so taboo- why is using them in a capacity for which they are truly functional such a big deal!! Jeez, if you go out in the summer you see more titties then you do while a mom is breastfeeding. Why should she have to hassle with a hooter hider or wrestling her baby into hiding so that you can feel comfortable with not seeing any hint that a woman is breastfeeding a child. The whole point of this is that what she is doing is a normal function of breasts, why are they offensive? Good for those who can do it super discreetly- but some women have huge boobs, some have babies that hate to be hidden by a hooter hider and sometimes it's just really hot. I think it is too much to ask a mom who's just trying to feed their baby to cover herself. She is not peeing on the sidewalk- she's feeding a baby in the best biological sense.
And most women do breastfeed discreetly and that has not stopped them from being harassed. It's like those idiots who equivocate dressing provocatively with rape.
And for Iknow101- it is a tired subject, but what is tired about it, is that in 2012, women are still being harassed for breastfeeding in public. If women are still being harassed and are legally allowed to be harassed for feeding their babies, then clearly something is still broken.

teddy... teddysmama09

Ok, this has been said a bazillion times, but it warrents saying again- some babies CANNOT be covered. My son was one of them. I am a very modest and descreet woman and when my son wouldn't feed under a cover I would be terrified to the point of tears when he would  start screaming to eat. I would go to the bathroom or car (which at the time was a 2 door convertable and he was born at a very cold time of year) and cry because I felt so isolated. By the time my daughter came along my whole view  had changed. I tried to cover her but she wouldn't have it, so I learned how to be discreet without suffocating her or isolating myself. No one ever said anything because I doon't think anyone noticed. At the first sign of fussiness I would get the baby situated and just carry on as if nothing was happening ( No screaming baby, no flailing covers, no running red faced through a  resteraunt with a screaming baby, no problem.)

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