Disembodied, Baby-Feeding Gazonga Outrages Magazine Subscribers

To the right, the recent cover of Babytalk Magazine, a monthly periodical dedicated to new mothers… a cover that has sparked some moral outrage amongst America’s prudish set.

What’s the big deal? Apparently, it’s the depiction of an areola-less tits on the cover of a periodical. “I was SHOCKED to see a giant breast on the cover of your magazine,” wrote one complainant.

Giant? Hardly. I know giant boobs when I see them and while I will admit that that breast seems huge compared to that baby’s head, it’s an optical illusion. Breast size is not measured in proportion to the skull size of small infants; in my book, a breast is only truly giant if it’s bigger than the mother’s head. Which is when you ask the mother out on a date, not write in to complain. If anything, the problem here is that breast isn’t giant enough to assuage all possible complaints.

In fact, I’m not even really sure this is a photograph of a mother. Couldn’t it just as easily be someone without pants sitting on a baby’s face? Infant ass-to-mouth is certainly a hell of a less appalling than breast feeding, yet we’d wager to say would be met with less complaints.

Eyeful of Breast-Feeding Mom Sparks Outrage [MSNBC]

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  1. Mary Marsala with Fries says:

    I like the article title: “Why Women Don’t Nurse Longer”. Yeah, maybe that’s because the hyperpseudomoral fruitloops in this country insist on freaking out exactly as if it was some sort of public porn show. That gets old pretty fast, especially when you’re the one with sore nipples and two duffel-bags full of crap trying to balance a cranky baby on an uncomfortable bench somewhere without getting bit.

    That said, I just saw the cover of the latest Style magazine, which features Kate Moss showing at least this much boob (except two of ‘em), and just about everything else besides.

    America’s consensus? Boobs: Okay as long as they’re a supermodel’s.

    -M.

  2. etinterrapax says:

    This is so tiresome. The most public I’ve ever nursed is in my car, and that’s about as public as I’m willing to get, but there is nothing patently offensive about what’s depicted here, especially given the context. It is, after all, a baby magazine, not a general-audience publication. It’d be awesome if people would just grow up, especially women who seem hellbent on making the rest of us look like hysterical boob-nazi nutjobs or ickypants girly girls who think that women ought to be nothing more than ornaments. We have breasts. Some of us feed babies with them for a while without falling into either camp or defiantly exposing ourselves. A little respect, please, and where we shouldn’t have to ask for it–from each other.

  3. Papercutninja says:

    Thank you to the ladies above me for showing that the majority of women out there AREN’T insane.

    The religious right is at it again. I believe that they mentioned that it is a breast, and all references to breasts are sexual in nature. Really? I’m sorry that whenever you (Christian Republican prude) see a child breast-feeding you (Christian Republican prude) assume that both the mother and the child are getting sexual satisfaction out of it. Just because you (Christian Republican prude) somehow get moist thinking about a child suckling at your (Christian Republican prude) breast doesn’t mean that the rest of the country feels the same way.

    It’s a fucking breast. Grow up you religious pieces of shit.

  4. Fancy Pants says:

    How is this picture more offensive than naked, pregnant Britney?

  5. Ishmael says:

    I wonder if Sam’s Wholesale would print a copy of this picture, or if a manager would stare at it open-mouthed for 5 minutes, then declare is ‘unsuitable.’

  6. buck09 says:

    Ninja – I know lots of Christian Republican Prudes – I have not yet met one that thinks public breastfeeding is distasteful.

    But don’t let that stop you from ranting about your favorite bogeymen.

  7. buck09 says:

    Also – my wife gets this magazine. (It’s free.) When I brought it in from the mailbox, I thought to myself “What a cute baby.”

    Didn’t notice the breast until the story hit the net.

  8. Papercutninja says:

    The post and article is about the outrage that certain women had over the COVER OF A BABY MAGAZINE. It has very little, if anything to do with the debate on public breastfeeding. It’s about the image on a magazine. This is the actual quote from the raving lunatic:

    “A breast is a breast – it’s a sexual thing.”

    Oh really? It’s a sexual thing when a baby is feeding from its mother?

    Also, bogeymen don’t exist.

  9. Multisyllaballistic says:

    Well, I for one was outraged to see that poor infant being bludgeoned by that enormous evil breast. Outraged.

  10. DeeJayQueue says:

    Breasts are not primarily sex organs. They do contain lots of sensitive tissue and they are a tremendous erogenous zone to be sure, but their primary function has and will always be as a food dispenser. Men have sexualized them and now women are finding them inappropriate. W. T. F.?
    I agree with Papercutninja’s sentiment, if not his/her presentation. It’s the closed-minded, “hate your body, it’s an evil thing that’s only capable of sin” mentality that sadly purvades our culture. As hard as we fight to spread logic and information, they fight harder to strip it out of our hands and minds with misinformation, scare tactics and social engineering. The boob on the cover of a magazine is just another in a long list of apparently newsworthy stories that could have been nipped in the bud had someone just looked at the self-righteous douche who voiced their complaint and told them “it’s a boob you dummy. grow up.”

  11. Zulkey says:

    I find this:

    And yet Wheatley, 40, who’s still nursing her 3-year-old daughter,
    rarely breast-feeds in public, partly because it’s more comfortable in
    the car, and partly because her husband is uncomfortable with other men
    seeing her breast.

    More icky than anything else. Three years old!!

  12. etinterrapax says:

    Yeah, Zulkey, I’m not into that either. Once they can ask for it, it’s long overdue to be over, IMNSHO. But there are a lot of women who would roast a person alive for expressing that opinion. Women can be horribly vicious to each other, even or especially when the issue is completely personal.

    One thing that amuses me about this photo is that it’s obviously either been retouched, or isn’t an actual breastfeeding woman’s breast. It’s much too perfect. If anyone’s to blame for the inappropriate sexualization of the image of breastfeeding, it’s BabyTalk’s photo editors. I haven’t had breasts like that since I was about thirteen, never mind since before I was pregnant.

  13. AcidReign says:

    …..Our society is crazy. A breast-feeding mom is a sight we should cherish. And besides, none I’ve ever seen flash anything. It’s all discretely hidden behind a tarp-like baby blanket or some such. Complainers on this subject are vindictive, busy-body “God-fearin’ Corporate America” shills. (Think Nestle, Mead-Johnson, Gerber, Similac, etc.)

  14. Paula says:

    In most of the rest of the world, women breastfeed in public (and without the “cover-up” of a blanket or whatever) and never get as much as a sideways glance. Also, in Europe, women go topless on the beach. Breasts are not evil, people!

  15. LLH says:

    “breast is best”

    – la leche league (breast feeding consultants int.)

  16. Jasephoto says:
  17. isla says:

    The article is right, the U.S. does have a puritanical streak. It is ridiculous that a woman would have to deny her child nourishment because someone thinks it’s “gross.” There should be no barriers to prevent a woman for nursing when and where she needs to (I promise no one is trying to give you a show). Mothers have enough obstacles to a successful breastfeeding relationship, there is no need for some narrow minded people decrying nursing and refering to it as obscenity.

    The breastfeeding rates in this country are abysmal. Our general attitude about it is baffling. Despite overwhelming evidence of the benefits and that breast is best, the number of nursing mothers is low. There are many factors, of course. People need to see breastfeeding normalized. Perhaps once we cross that hurdle, we can offer support, assistance and education for woman rather than shame them and make them feel bad. We have to have laws protecting our children’s right to eat in public, and people who are unaware harass women.

    As previous posters mentioned, you can see Kate Moss’s or Britney Spear’s naked body and breast. But the second a baby comes into the picture, it is obscene, offensive and “gross”? What a ridiculous double standard. Most times people have no idea a baby is nursing.

    And yes, three year olds nurse. There is nothing gross about it. It is hard to see past it, but it really is more common that people think. This is one of those things we get squeamish about for no reason.

    “Research by Dr. Katherine Dettwyler, anthropologist at Texas A&M University, argues that the natural weaning age for human beings falls between 2.5 and 6 years of age.”

    http://www.kathydettwyler.org/detwean.html

    The AAP recommendation states, “Breastfeeding should be continued for at least the first year of life and beyond for as long as mutually desired by mother and child.” The WHO recommends 2 years.

    There is an easy solution to those of you who are bothered by it, and refuse to consider the detriments to this attitude. As I always tell people, “If you don’t like it, don’t look.”