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07/19/2010

NOM plays the victim: Nursing mothers are apparently immobile statues edition

by Jeremy Hooper

Okay, here's the deal: It's clear from the photos that the mother was already sitting back way away from the podium, with plenty of NOM supporters between her and whatever speaker happened to be declaring war on gays' ring fingers at any given moment. So if clear sight lines were the goal, she made a poor choice from the get-go. Probably because she didn't want to nurse in front of a crowd, which is completely understandable. But it's not understandable for this mom to blame the other side for her vision problems, when there were multiples bodies from her own side between her eyes and the NOM speakers' mouths! In this public park, everyone deserves the freedom to congregate -- but nobody's clear vantage point is assured! Obviously.

And the other point: Nursing does not render one immobile. It is admittedly not ideal to move while in the process -- but mothers do it all the time. If she was seriously desperate to get around this spontaneous line of pro-equality protestors, then she could have rolled her eyes, scoffed at the gays, mumbled a few words, and then moved her family to another vantage point. She had a nursing blanket that completely covered her up, she had the abilities, and she had free will. And presumably the man in the video is her able-bodied husband, who was also on site to assist the "one woman" to his "one man." There were options available. Isn's teamwork and compromise what marriage and family life is all about?

And finally: The silent protestors were on site to disrupt an event that they never wanted to happen in the first place. A hurtful event. Frankly, a cruel event. An event that weakens us as American people, cultivating the message that LGB citizens are not on the same tier as heterosexuals. It's understandable why a protestor, even while remaining sensitive to motherhood, would not see a need to move out of what we've already established to have been compromised sight lines. The pro-equality folks weren't drowning out the sound. They weren't covering the mother's ears. The protestors simply put one more body in the way. The only difference between their bodies and all of the others: These folks were wearing equality tees, not "one man, one woman" shirts!

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