Boobs. Titties. Juggs. Knockers. All are names synonymous with the soft, fleshy prominences on the chests of sexually mature human females. Breasts. Breasts house the mammary glands that produce milk in female homo sapiens. The vast majority of female mammals produce milk to feed their newborns, which requires the infant to suck on a teat to feed. Suckling is the natural process mammals use to feed their young, plain and simple. Cool right? Well, if you have any connection to the internet then you know the act of suckling for human females and their infants is one of much controversy in many communities around the world. Being a human male inherently creates an obvious obstacle for me to comment with any experience on the subject, but how can I, as a man, influence what women do with their bodies? Why has it become the norm for others to dictate when and where this natural occurrence occurs?
Breasts in today’s cultural, primarily in the United States, are highly sexualized. Water companies are even using hyper sexual imagery of women to promote bottled H20. This is considered “bad” or "obscene", but, on the contrary, it is quite pleasing to the eye. The female form has long been considered one of the most beautiful and captivating spectacles. I myself am never offended when I see sexually charged images or video, whether it be art or advertising or something completely unrelated. In Europe, nudity is embraced! Breasts are commonplace in daily interactions (not to say women are walking around naked) but on the whole it is less of a “to-do” if you see breasts on a magazine cover or on a beach.
What does all this have to do with babies getting some yum yums from momma’s yum yum glands? In the recent past it has become a large issue amongst many for mothers to breast feed their newborns in public view. With the dawn of the viral world, videos have surfaced of women breast feeding in public and being shamed for committing this act. Again, I am a man, I will never have to feed a newborn baby with my body. What I do know is I want the mother of my children to have the freedom to suckle our children wherever she damn well please.
So let's get this straight. Women are allowed to flaunt their their tattas and booty bumps in advertising on television but women who are giving their children nourishment are shamed publicly, even screamed at to cease and desist? Would you yell at a mother for buying her 12 year old a cheeseburger? I DON'T THINK SO! So why are we appalled by thee most natural thing in the world? Riddle me that.
Where does this mindset of fear and ignorance stem from? How do we stop it? How do we grow as a community of human beings? This stigma around breasts is a strange dichotomy because we as a society consider public nudity as indecent exposure. Indecent exposure is purposefully displaying ones genitals in public and is often committed for the sexual gratification of the offender or committed to entice a sexual response. It seems that breastfeeding does not fall into that category, yet so many are “offended” or “disgusted” by breast feeding, but will scroll through an article displaying Miley Cyrus’ latest nude escapade without blinking an eye. This is because breasts have become sexualized. One asinine argument to breast feeding I read said “This isn’t a village in Africa. It’s culturally inappropriate to bare your breasts in public here.” What is so different about their community in the African village? Well, their breasts are not sexualized. We have made it “culturally inappropriate” to breastfeed but Victoria Secret billboards are fifty feet tall. If we are to stop this ignorance we as a society must desexualize breasts. Easier said then done. Since 1871 when Pearl Tobacco featured a naked woman on the packaging of their products we have seen the female form used to sell anything and everything. How do we dismantle that way of living? I don’t know. But I bet it starts with how we raise our children. We must teach acceptance and love, and most of all that the human body is not something to hide but something to celebrate and respect. In doing this maybe we can turn the tide not only on this issue but many other issues in our society.
written by // Darrin Bush