Core Ideals

If I were a politician, one of my absolute beliefs would be that a woman has the right to breast feed a baby anywhere and any time she choses. It's one of the things that truly gets on my last nerve to hear about establishments that go against their corporate policy and ask that mothers should cover themselves or the baby when they breast feed.

Her lawyer wrote a letter to Thomas & King, the company that operates Applebee's in Central Kentucky. They got no response. After a second letter, a Thomas & King lawyer said the restaurant chain would consider keeping blankets in the restaurant so that breast-feeding women could cover themselves.
The analogy used in the article was, "That's like telling Rosa Parks she still had to sit in the back of the bus, but we'll give her a blanket to make her more comfortable." It's more like telling her she can sit in the front, but she has to wear a mask and gloves so people can't see she's black. And it's probably not a good idea for a white woman to compare themselves to Rosa Parks - as a country we're not totally segregated yet.

What gets me is how puritan we are as Americans, and I've beat this dead horse before. We've stigmatized and demonized breasts and nudity and sex to the point of sickness. The naked body is not evil. It's not a bad thing. I'm all in favor of decency - I don't need to see wangs and chungs scurrying around 24/7, but if a woman has to pop a tit to feed an infant I say let her. It's only distracting if you look directly at it, and if you're looking directly at it you're being lecherous and if you're being lecherous it's your own damn fault for having your sexual nature repressed. Don't blame a hungry baby because of your own puerile and ignorant inadequacies. I'd rather see 1,000 flushed and flustered prudes than 1 hungry kid.

Here's more fuel to the fire; this is an American problem. Well, almost. I've found it's an English-speaking world problem. Which makes sense. A lot of the ideas we get about shame, purity, sex and modesty came from England. In the end, people came to America not because they were religious radicals in the stereotypical sense of the word, but because they were puritans. The English were heathens compared to our forefathers and we tend to believe it the reverse, that the Pilgrims were somehow these wildchilds (wildchildren?) and were loose and lively and liberated. Not so.

However, the UK (including Scotland and Ireland) are just as repressed about women and their dual role as provider and companion as we are in the States. Countries like France, Germany, Italy seem to be more open to the idea, dare I say enlightened. People are confused when they are asked if it's ok to breast feed. Why wouldn't YOU feed YOUR baby? I don't know much about African, Latin, Middle Eastern or Asian sensibilities. Perhaps a reader could leave a comment about how breast feeding is appreciated or scorned in India or South Korea or Brazil or Israel. That would be positively worldly of you.

Mrs. A hasn't breast feed in over two years but the issue is still strong with me and the reason is the only people hurt by it are babies. Nature built mammals to feed their young and decency be damned. If babies weren't meant to be fed by a mother's breast, they would have been born in eggs and left to fend for themselves. Don't deny a baby the right to eat because you can't handle seeing a nipple. That's your problem, not the baby's. If a nipple makes you uncomfortable, YOU put a blanket over YOUR head. To me, you are the freak.

Carry on.

Oh yeah, I'm still planning on doing LIA strips. I've got a little notebook full of them that just have to get drawn. But I realized two things. Things are changing around the Austin household that could affect the characters, as they are based off our family. I'd better really like the characters because of something happens, I'd have to kill one of them off like in a soap opera. The other thing is, I'm still waiting to get a good scanner and the size I want to draw these so it's easy for me to do is bigger than the little scanner we have. So process and permanence are stalling my brain. I'm sure something will break through here soon.

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