'Don't Be Lactose Intolerant'


Lactivists held demonstrations at a dozen or so airports across the country today to protest a mother's ejection from a New York-bound Freedom Airlines plane in Burlington, Vermont, for showing too much breast while feeding her 1-year-old daughter. The protests—which involved openly nursing near the counters of Freedom's parent company, Delta, and waving signs with slogans such as "Breasts: Not Just for Selling Cars Anymore"—presumably had the intended effect of embarrassing the airline and encouraging it to be more tolerant of on-board breast-feeding in the future. It had already disciplined the flight attendant who ejected the nursing mother in Burlington. Instead of declaring victory, the passenger is pursuing a complaint with the Vermont Human Rights Commission. As a protester in Hartford explained, "It's a basic human thing that we are doing and we should be able to do it in public without being kicked off planes, without being told to sit in bathrooms. It's a human right." I tend to agree with the first part, the second not so much.

Last year Kerry Howley considered the clash between lactivists and conservative advocates of secret secretion.

Addendum: Because some of our readers seem to have difficulty imagining what breastfeeding looks like, I've added a stock photo. I can't vouch for this woman's resemblance to the Freedom Airlines passenger, but it gives you a general idea. Apparently not just humans but a lot of other mammals feed their offspring this way.