TAP, TAP, TAP …. !!!
What time is it?
Two Thousand Eight you say?
Oh. … Really? ‘Cause after the hoopla at the New York State Museum recently, I could have sworn it was half past 1600. You know, when the Puritans started putting roots down in New England.
It seems that a woman breastfeeding an infant alleges someone wearing a badge told her to move her baby’s snack into the loo, and further threatened that she’d better hop to it since another employee had already gone to report the incident.
What’s interesting (to me) is that it appears when the woman and her husband complained about the treatment to museum authorities, instead of receiving an apology they were told simply that the admonition wasn’t leveled by one of their employees. Can't you just see the collective shrugging of shoulders?
Museum officials contend that if the mother was approached by anyone it could have been one of the many state employees with ID tags who regularly walk through the museum as part of their daily walking route. The incident - as reported - they explain does not reflect the policy of the museum or the actions of its staff.
bastardize paraphrase a little more; the official stance is we're not saying it didn't happen, but we're saying it wasn't one of our people. And we can't control the unwashed public.
The results were predictable.
Outraged mothers assembled grass-roots style - prompted by posts in online forums and bulletin boards - for a nurse-in to protest the museum’s handling of the incident.
As a nursing mother I may get drummed out of the corp for suggesting nurse-ins seem a little silly to me, especially in light of the potential that some random state employee threw some weight around they shouldn’t have. But I understand the sentiment.
I mean, I'd much rather put my energy into boycotting malls and other places of commerce shielded from such state laws because in fact their halls are private property.
But I’m not an organizer, nor am I terribly organized.
In an instance like this I’m someone who says: ‘YOU with the pointy finger! Bring your boss to me! Let's settle this here and now." Because I know the laws are on my side. I know that I can nurse my child in any public place because our state specifically says I can.
I don’t have to change anyone’s mind.
I don’t have to admonish the puritanical mother who doesn’t want her prepubescent son to see that kind of thing. I don’t need to tell her to ‘Grow Up’ and in the process let her know she could better educate the video-game obsessed fruit of her loins to the notion that breasts aren’t reserved only for the pages of Playboy magazine.
I don’t have to nurse in a toilet.
I don't have to plan my errands better.
I don't have to pack a folding tent in my diaper bag for camouflage.
I don’t have to express milk and bottle feed.
I don't have to feed my son formula.
I don't have to stay home until he’s weaned.
I don’t have to do any of that because the laws already say I have the right to nurse in public.
It doesn't even say I have to practice discretion.
Lord knows even without a baggy sweater I'm showing less than J.Lo walking down any red carpet. And really, my theory is people who stare do so just because the know what's happening whether they can see it or not.
From a public relations standpoint, if it were me on the end of the complaint line at the museum I’d have apologized immediately and apologized profusely. It may very well have been someone outside of the museum’s employ who took it upon themselves to admonish a fellow patron. But it was someone who seemed to be in authority, and it happened at the museum. Is there anything else that really matters?
In the grand scheme of things, does it really matter if the state worker at fault is someone working in the collections or someone pushing pencils around their desk waiting for the clock to strike five?
Seems to me, people shouldn't be worried about who’s held accountable because everyone pays a price.
There are a lot of boobs out there, many of which aren't even lactating.