Seems like there’s a new story in the news every day about a woman getting kicked out of somewhere for exercising her completely legal right (in Australia) to breastfeed in public. The latest making the rounds is about a mother asked to leave a pool in Brisbane for feeding her 11 month old.
It’s infuriating of course and it’s a debate I can barely be bothered to get into because the argument against it basically amounts to “I don’t want to have to look at that.”
And that’s it. Forget whatever bizarre puritanical reasons someone has for not wanting to see a mother feed her child because it happens to be from a body part that men have decided belongs to them. That’s not even the issue. It’s that people feel so entitled, they think women should be marginalised and babies left hungry and screaming because of someone else’s personal preference and inability to avert their eyes.
If legislation should be made based on what people don’t want to look at, then here’s a a list of things I don’t want to see:
- My Family stickers on the back of cars, or reindeer antlers for cars at Christmas
- Ugg boots
- Meals with little octopuses or prawns with faces
- The back of someone’s legs when they’ve got fake tan streaks running down them
- Kids wearing shirts that imply their mother is a MILF
- People who let their dogs lick them on the mouth
- Stores that sell nothing but Jesus candles
- Ed Hardy clothing
- Anything that endorses the Australian Liberal Party
But here’s the thing. I don’t have the right to not be offended/disgusted/squicked out when I am in the public sphere. If I see something on the above list, I simply look the other way. Maybe I make a snarky comment to my partner. I don’t try to get it banned from my view.
If you’re sick of having this argument and want to do something about it, and live in Brisbane, you can attend a nurse-in at the Bribie Island Aquatic Centre this coming Saturday at 11am.
And if you don’t want me to feed my kid in public, you better be prepared to deal with this reaction: