Ok so I never thought I would write a blog on Boobs but here it is.
Boobs are great. 50% of the population have them. And pretty much all of the other 50% of population are interested in them.
But there is a weird anomaly with boobs that really has come to light this last week in Australia.
First up let’s examine the way society at large treats boobs.
1) A fairly large percentage of those of the population that have them like to wear clothes that display a significant proportion of the surface area of our topic of conversation.
I was at Surfers Paradise last night with my family and took notice (not in the creepy stalker way) of the style of clothing I saw and again not in the weird way, noted the ladies who were happy to display what sometimes are referred to as “Assets.”
I looked around for the outrage at this display of Boobs. Surely there were protests. But no. There was even no protest from the street preacher that was preaching in Cav Mall.
2) Having just come back from Phuket, and walking along the main Patong beach, I did notice some poor ladies are unable to afford both parts of a Bikini and so clearly they only purchased the bottom part of what I think is a fairly essential partnership of both top and bottom of the bikini set. I also felt sad for most of the other women on the beach who clearly aren’t quite as poor as the women who can’t afford a top, but are still poor enough that the bikini top that they did purchase wasn’t quite big enough for them. Bikini top material is clearly very expensive and so females just purchase the little they can afford. Damm you poverty.
But I looked around for outrage at the boobs that were on display and no one was saying a word.
3) I had the unfortunate experience of seeing a news clip on the Internet this week of a Miley Cyrus concert, where she was performing (and I use that term lightly) with her boobs completely exposed. Surely there was outrage at the concert? But everyone seemed to be weirdly enjoying the exposure and even more weirdly her singing.
4) Several weeks ago I wrote a blog outraged at Madonna who called a 17year old girl (read legally still a child) up on stage at her Brisbane Concert and then ripped her top down completely exposing her left breast. Surely this child would be outraged. Nope. Surely the mother of the child would be outraged. Nope, in fact the mother spoke of how proud she was of her daughter….Proud why? Because she grew a breast? Oh ok. Well I am proud of my daughter because she is doing so well at University. Click here to read my Blog on the Madonna Incident.
5) Also several weeks ago, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull became the first Prime Minister to attend the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras in Sydney. I also noticed several other politicians, the NSW police force and other organisations were involved so I flicked on the ABC and watched for a few minutes. Guess what I saw….lots of exposed Boobs. Surely now there would be outrage. Surely tomorrow PM Turnbull will hold a press conference and distance himself from public displays of nudity…..But no nothing. Everyone seemed really comfortable with the level of boobage on display.
6) As I used to be the Senior Pastor of a Church in Canberra, I am well versed in the rev head festival in January called the Summer Nats. Now I haven’t attended the Summer Nats, but I have heard stories from people who have attended. One of the well known traditions is to hear men shout to aussie women “Show us your tits.” This is done in the hope that the owners of the boobs will lift their T-Shirt and show the gathering their “assets.” Apparently the ladies in attendance are generally more than happy to comply and so the Summer Nats have a reputation for being about cars and boobs.
So I asked a few Civic Leaders in Canberra about the level of outrage at this wanton display of boobs. (I didn’t ask our PM as he was too busy looking at the Boobs at the Mardi Gras).
Get this. There was not outrage. No one is apparently offended by the boobs on display.
7) Writing about the Summer Nats reminded me of the Carnival in Rio which happens in February each year. At the Carnival, women are rewarded with beads for flashing their boobs to the crowd, which is often accompanied by raucous applause from the crowd. So the more beads you have the more you have exposed your boobs to the crowd and the beads are worn with pride.
Any outrage at this display of boobage. Doesn’t appear that way.
8) I was innocently watching the Channel 10 5pm News the other day as they were reporting on Fashion Week. There was much excitement as Delta Goodrem was walking the cat walk. What I wasn’t warned about was the other models that walked the catwalk in see through tops. I am innocently watching the News and here I am confronted with boobs. I thought there must be people outraged by these boobs. So I got online and searched for Boobs on the Catwalk outrage. DO NOT DO THIS!!!!!
Ok I recovered and saw that there is no outrage.
Let’s talk about where outrage exists when it comes to boobs.
Attach a baby to the boob and all hell breaks lose.
Just this week Jetstar was forced to apologize to a feeding mother who was told to cover up her boob on a flight to Sydney. Oh if only she didn’t have a baby attached and oh if she was only not using her boob for its actual function of feeding and bonding with her young baby, then she would be ok. And she may have even got some beads for the exposure. But instead, embarrassment and controversy.
Just this week, another mother was forced by Movie World staff on the Gold Coast to feed her child in a filthy toilet instead of sitting in comfort in the Theme Park’s cafe. Damn, if only she had have been at a Madonna concert, or on a beach in Thailand (or any beach for that matter). How dare she attach a baby her boob. The outrage swept the nation. The debate raged on.
On April 16th 2016, A Sydney Cafe posted a Breastfeeding Friendly sign in his cafe…..Let’s read the story (Source: news.com.au)
Article in Italics.
There is no parenting topic that gets people more worked up than breastfeeding.
This afternoon hundreds of commenters got worked up over the Today Show’s choice to post a photo taken from a Willoughby Cafe on their Facebook Page.
The sign reads:
“BREASTFEEDING MUMS — Pop in have a FREE cup of tea if you need a pitt stop … No need to eat. No need to ask. Please Relax J Willows.”
Cue internet mayhem.
Comments included everything from simple statements about loving the sign to people calling discrimination against bottle feeders to others calling discrimination against men. And, of course, one lovely gentleman calling breastfeeding women “slappers that just love attention” and the café owner “a person who likes his customers to get their tits out for him.”
“As a woman who breastfed my two children, I personally, love the sign.”
“Breastfeeding is hard bloody work. I have never eaten as much or drunk as much (non-alcoholic seeing as though I was feeding after all) than when I was breastfeeding.”
“The offer of a free cuppa, a comfy chair and zero judgment while feeding is pretty much the dream of every breastfeeding woman. Well, it definitely was the dream of this one”.
“And I assure the gentleman who commented on the post that no woman breastfeeds for attention nor do they like to “get their tits out”. If anything, much of the feeding process, particularly in public, involves a tonne of strategic positing in order to AVOID getting your tits out on full display.”
“I have no doubt that both bottle feeding parents, and men in general, are more than welcome in the café as well. The fact that the owner went to the trouble to write the sign pretty much promotes the fact the café is family friendly.’
“Offering a breastfeeding woman a chair to sit and a drink (which, let’s keep it real here, is a cup of tea not a $25 cocktail) is not meant to be malicious to people who are not breastfeeding.”
“I’m not currently breastfeeding so would not be able to take advantage of this offer, but it doesn’t mean I don’t love the intent behind it.”
“Is this another case of someone trying to do something nice and getting ridiculed in the process?”
“I don’t know the owner, but whoever they are they sound lovely and I really couldn’t care less if they are a male or female.
If I’m ever in the area I’ll definitely be dropping in.’
Here is another great example of the outrage that exists in the Australian Community when a baby is attached to a boob. (Source is Bendigo Advertiser Feb 2016)
Article in Italics.
A young Bendigo mum was forced to leave a popular shopping centre food court on Tuesday afternoon after disgruntled patrons complained to a plaza employee.
Luci White had almost finished her own lunch in the Bendigo Marketplace food court when her seven-month-old son, Zaydd, started to grizzle.
Mothers angered at public attitudes to breastfeeding
So Ms White did what she had done many times before: she began to breastfeed her child.
The young mum could not have predicted the barrage of negativity she would soon confront, first from an elderly man and then from a mother with two small children of her own.
“The older gentleman said: ‘You can’t do it in public, it’s inappropriate’,” Ms White recalled.
“And the mum in her 30s said: ‘That is so rude with children around’.
“I couldn’t believe it. Why would your child find it so weird to see a baby breastfeeding?”
While Ms White initially held her ground, when a worker dressed in the Marketplace’s uniform approached and asked her to relocate to the centre’s “specialised feeding facility”, she said she felt there was no choice but to comply with the demand.
“When I took my son off my breast, he started crying and by the time we got to the room, he was screaming, and screaming, and screaming,” she said.
“It was a very traumatic experience.”
The unsettling incident has enraged mothers throughout Bendigo, many of who will come together this Friday for a sit-in protest at the Marketplace food court.
Almost 80 Facebook users have already said they will attend the Boobs for Babies event at Bendigo Marketplace, with many saying they plan to to breastfeed in support of the upset young mum.
The incident first came to light after a friend of the woman shared the story with the Bendigo Mums Facebook page’s 2600 followers.
“I think there needs to be a mass breastfeeding session in that food court to educate the neanderthals out there that no-one has the right to tell a mum where to feed her child,” Samantha Purden posted.
The Boobs for Babies organiser, mother-of-two Michelle Van Zyl, said she had also been on the receiving end of criticism for breastfeeding in public, and hearing Ms White’s story was “the straw that broke the camel’s back”.
She is shocked at the amount of support already shown for the event and said it was a way of getting behind families like Ms White and Zaydd.
“(It’s) to show support for this one young mum, and every other mum who has ever been told what she’s doing is wrong,” she told the Bendigo Advertiser.
“It’s perfectly legal, we’re not breaking any laws for feeding our babies and we shouldn’t be made to feel like we are.”
Marketplace apologises, ‘takes steps’ to improve
Bendigo Marketplace responded to the public backlash in a statement on Wednesday afternoon, saying they were aware of the incident and they will be “taking necessary steps to ensure all our staff and contractors are aware that we support a mother’s right to breastfeed her children at our centre whether in the parents’ room or in a location of their choice”.
“Bendigo Marketplace is a family friendly and community focused shopping centre,” the statement read.
“We regret that a member of our community experienced any discomfort or embarrassment while shopping with us and we apologise to the mother concerned.”
So here is the standard in our Community. Get your boobs out as much as you want… just please don’t attach a baby: Then there will be outrage.
And that is completely messed up.
Anyway that’s what I think.
Ps Peter Pilt
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