Brace yourself, the Breastfeeding Police are at it again in Georgia. This time they've locked their sights on slutty exhibitionist moms who dare to think they can feed their 2-year-old in public and get away with it.
What is going on down there? Have all the peaches gone bad? First a Georgia school district banned breastfeeding for students and teachers. And now a town council in Forest Park has equated extended breastfeeding to public indecency.
Look, I get it. Not everyone is comfortable with nursing moms -- and they may never be, no matter how much they read up on it. But we all have things that are perfectly legal that we really don't like, that we have no right to impede upon.
Logic, more than emotion, goes into the acceptance of a lot of things outside your lifestyle choices. But this!? The 'Logic Train' to Georgia has definitely derailed.
In an attempt to "control public nudity," they've decided that nursing a child over the age of 2 will no longer be covered by the state law that excludes nursing women from being charged with indecent exposure. So for right now, my toddler and my nursing relationship is wholesome ... but in two months, suddenly it goes from me nursing her to illegal public nudity?
How is this legal? I was fairly sure city laws couldn't contradict state laws ... from what I can tell, Forest Park isn't a 'Home Rule' city either, so this shouldn't even carry weight! Their previous law only had rules about adult entertainment businesses, but I guess these "slutty" moms of toddlers have been causing quite a ruckus? You know, taking out a breast to feed a toddler and all ... unless there are tassels involved, all I'm seeing is a giant waste of time and resources, and a really crappy message to women who've made it that long in the first place.
Imagine if pacifier use suddenly became illegal, or your baby's favorite stuffed animal or sippy cups, in public ... same deal to a toddler, by the way, give or take some nutrition and whatnot. Since when is breastfeeding damaging to society?
And I thought Tennessee had issues with its own restrictive breastfeeding law, preventing the public nursing of a child over 1, which they at least managed to fix. Between this and the Georgia school district banning breastfeeding, it's no surprise Georgia is only a tiny step above Tennessee with a pathetic 9.7 percent of babies being exclusively breastfed until only 6 months.
Look, when my daughter turns 2, there's no magic jump. It's not the Sims here -- she doesn't spin around and magically turn into a child with spurts of confetti, and suddenly all my interactions with her change accordingly. I'll nurse her the day before her birthday, on it, and the day after, and aside from a fun party in there, and her being RIGHT when she answers, "TWO!" when asked how old she is, nothing else changes. It certainly doesn't magically make my breasts sex objects.
Oh Georgia ... how long until this gets retracted? For being in a part of the country with the highest rates of obesity and diabetes, and ranked 43rd in overall health, you really can't afford to punish women and their children who've succeeded in something HEALTHY and GOOD. And, much less can you afford to try to link breastfeeding to something sexual, perverted, or damaging -- a message that has a much further reach and heavier impact than just this law.
If you want to let them know what you think, send a message, email, or call City Hall yourself. Maybe thousands of emails that say that the World Health Organization and multiple Surgeons General recommend 2 as a minimum -- not max -- might help get the point across? Be proactive!
What do you think of Forest Park's law?
Image via byrdiegyrl/Flickr