Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Breastfeeding is Only Obscene When It's Misunderstood

There is a little movement going on in Facebook land. It appears that the powers-that-be, whoever they may be, have deleted an account called The Leaky Boob (aka The Leaky B@@B). It was deleted for a "terms of service" violation. What was so violating? Are leaking boobs really that insulting? Well, I guess they are if you're a brand new white blouse....anyway. Facebook has time and time again made it loud and clear that it is 100% against the posting of pictures of women breastfeeding. The Leaky Boob, a page created for the support of breastfeeding, contained many of these pictures. Now, Facebooks terms of service doesn't say anything about breastfeeding, but it does ban photos that are obscene, pornographic or sexually explicit. Funny, breastfeeding does not meet those descriptions.

If one has a problem with breastfeeding, they should probably avoid pages and websites where breastfeeding is discussed. Makes sense, right? Personally, I have a problem with the whole New Kids on the Block and Backstreet Boys reunion. I simply don't visit pages highlighting that event. I have a problem with the Tea Party. Guess what? I avoid Tea Party websites. I do not petition webmasters to take down TP posts and pictures simply because I am offended by the site of someone wearing a hat with Lipton teabags stapled to it. We are such a society of "Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah." As in, "waaaaah, that offends me, make it stop." When did we lose the ability to control ourselves, to look the other way if something is offensive? It's not like the image of a nursing infant is the same as the image of a woman being raped, yet people will react strongly to the image of nursing and not so much to the image of rape. Yes, I'm serious. People are fine with letting their children watch violent programs, play with toy guns and imitate WWE wrestling in the backyard, but God forbid someone posts a picture of a mother nursing her baby. Then they cry that you are corrupting their children. Oh have Mercy!

It's fine for your 12 year old daughter to strut down the mall in a nearly see through camisole, with no bra, that shows her belly and her muffin top, while wearing shorts that barely cover her pubescent kitten, but it's not okay for a mother to sit on a bench in the same mall and discreetly nurse her child? It's fine for Victoria's Secret to be there, with it's 20 foot posters showing models wearing nothing but a bra, panites and some heels. That's fine. But nursing isn't?

You have to be living under a rock to be unaware that breastfeeding is the best nutrition for an infant. I'm not going to go down the list of all the benefits right now, as it's common knowledge. If you need to know, just ask me.Why would anyone become offended when a mother is doing such a selfless act, giving her child the best nutrition that God/Nature/The Universe/Flying Spagetti Monster has to offer? People complain that it's obscene. That it'll corrupt our youth. Okay, so playing Death Coma IV on Wii is just fine for our youth, right? Letting your 13 year old daughter watch Gossip Girl is wholesome, correct? Let's make this clear - 99.9% of the time you don't see much of anything when a baby is nursing. The baby's mouth covers the nipple. Oh, the offensive nipple! Who knew such a teeny tiny protrusion from my breast could bring down nations? Ahem. The nipple and areola are covered. Most mothers wear clothing that is suitable for nursing and it keeps almost everything covered. You're more likely to see a flash of belly flab than even the top of a boob. Ah yes, the top of the boob. That's the part of the boob you may or may not see. Funny. I see the top of your teen daughter's boobs every fricken' day. Even in the winter. I went shopping for my 12 year old niece in a store geared for girls her age and couldn't believe the amount of cleavage-revealing shirts they sold. I will tell you this, as a mother who nursed her own child for 3 years (faint!), you would see more of my boobs in a bikini than you would when I was nursing. And I've never heard anyone complain about me in a bikini. It seems the only time breasts are acceptable in this society is when they are sexualized. Don't you think there's a problem with that?

Back to Facebook. Why is it okay for them to constantly remove websites that talk about breastfeeding and show pictures of nursing moms? Can we talk about hypocrisy? Because Facebook allows a page for Playboy. It has nearly 4 million fans. Do you really think the pictures on Playboy's facebook page are wholesome? I looked around and found quite a few pages for local strip clubs. And the strippers themselves have their own pages. I can tell you that those pages do not contain pictures that could be hung in any church. The umpteen thousand porn stars in this nation all seem to have their own Facebook fan pages with pictures that couldn't be passed around a schoolyard. There are pages that support the killing of certain groups of people. Pages for inciting violence. Pages that are blantantly racist. Pages that support violence towards gays. That's all okay with Facebook, but a simple photo of a little baby EATING is offensive? Are you outraged yet?

And let me put to rest the most ridiculous argument for banning that comes up everytime a breastfeeding site is banned. Some little louse, usually with the grammatical skills of a monkey, will pipe up and say that posting pictures of breastfeeding makes you the subject of perverts and you may even get raped! I'm not kidding folks. People say this all the time. They say this to mothers who nurse in public. I understand that the idea of a breast is exciting. Our breasts serve two purposes - to feed and to sexually arouse. The two are completely separate. But that's neither here nor there for this argument. I'm going to clue you in on something. There are people out there who have sexual fetishes for every single part of the body. For all types of clothing. For all sorts of hair styles. for certain skin colors. For certain professions. Foot fetishes are very common. Should we wear knee high socks and rain boots 365 days a year to protect against them? There are pervs ouot there who get so giddy at the sight of EARS. Shall we wear ear muffs all year, even in 100 degree heat? What about pervs who get off on eyeglasses? Let's enact mandatory burning of all glasses and require that everyone wear contacts. Oh but wait, there are pervs with eyeball fetishes. Better poke them out. And cut off your hands or wear gloves, because there are fetishists who want nothing more than to caress your painted fingernails. Shave your head while you're at it, because there are plently of perverts who want to touch or pull your locks so they can spring a boner. The point is, if you live in fear that something about your body will be the object of lust then you will never get anywhere. We might as well stay locked in our homes and never go outdoors. Better get familiar with the take out menu. Oh but wait, I'm sure there is a fetish about women who answer the door in their yoga suits.

The Leaky Boob was not a site about posting pics of babies nursing. That was a small part of it. The site offered tons of advice and support for women who are nursing. Heck, it offered support for women who were unable to nurse and had to turn to formula. I'm done nursing for now, but I always visited the page to see if I could offer some wisdom and I saw support and advice given every hour of everyday. And it wasn't just nursing. There were words of kindness for parents going through rough times with raising kids or with relationships. Is that so offensive?

If this offends you, then visit Bring Back The Leaky Boob on Facebook or check out The Leaky Boob on Blogspot.


Sara said...

Hell yah! Love this post. The whole removal of this page is ridiculous. I love the camaraderie that has arisen out of this however (if there is a bright side of this whole debacle!). I really enjoyed your post!

Funky Little Earthchild said...

Thanks! I agree - it's amazing to see how we have all banded together. :-)

Joella said...

I'm a new follower, I just came over your link on the Leaky B@@b FB page! :)



Funky Little Earthchild said...

Thanks Joella!

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