We all know that social media can be used to bully. Celebrities and regular folk alike receive death threats on Twitter. People are bullied via Facebook. You'd LIKE to think the people doing this kind of bullying are young kids who don't know any better. But, sadly, many times those doing the bullying are adults. And we're not just talking adults sending death threats and other horrible comments to comedians or famous people who said something they disagree with. I'm talking adults bullying mothers for breastfeeding. Breastfeeding! Something that, you know, babies might need to survive?
Last year, NASCAR driver Kasey Kahne, saw a woman -- gasp!!! -- breastfeeding in a store and Tweeted:
Just walking through supermarket. See a mom breast feeding little kid. Took second look because I was obviously seeing things. I wasn’t ... I don’t feel like shopping anymore or eating ... one boob put away and one boob hanging. #nasty
After he was called out for being an "asshole" (in the words of one woman), he issued an apology.
Then Miami Marlins player Logan Morrison decided that breastfeeding SO wasn't for him that he snapped a picture of a woman feeding her baby in Nordstrom and posted it to his feed with the message:
Hey @Nordstrom nothing makes me want to spend $$ like seeing women breastfeeding in your store...
He too was then called out for being a jerk by many on Twitter, and was shut down by Nordstrom, which Tweeted back, "We welcome breastfeeding mothers in our store."
Beyond the question of why adult men would find women breastfeeding in public to be so nasty and offensive -- when surely they wouldn't find a Playboy model wandering butt naked around a store nasty and offensive -- you have to shake your head how they also take it to the next level by bullying them online. My guess is that these men -- famous athletes not accustomed to being slapped down -- never thought for a moment that's what would happen.
So let's hear it for Twitter. It can be a raucous, immature beast at times -- but can also act as a moral compass for those who surely need it. Like these two emotionally-stunted dudes. Because if they'd said these comments in the locker room, they just would have gotten guffaws, even from teammates who would have privately disagreed with them.
At least these guys were so shamed by Twitter replies that they both issued apologies. And maybe, just maybe, they thought about their actions (and their Tweets!) a little.
Have you ever spoken back to someone online?
Image via sdminor81/Flickr