Your Opinion: Has the Colorado Rockies Breastfeeding Mom Controversy Been Under or Overplayed?
posted by: Amber Johnson
Last week, I received an email about local moms staging a “Nurse In” as a protest to the Colorado Rockies’ response to a nursing mom.
And I have to admit I almost hit the “delete” button.
It’s not that I don’t believe in breastfeeding in public because I do. Nor am I one to usher women’s rights under the table, which is what the woman promoting this Nurse In claimed it was all about.
It just seemed like such an extreme response to something I thought had already been smoothed over. But upon further investigation, I discovered it was a lot more complicated than that.
A bit of background: Colorado Springs mom Sandra Snow was seated in the nosebleed section at a Rockies game. Her baby needed to eat so she moved back to a closed-off section to nurse her. Sandra was allegedly being discreet by covering up when a Rockies usher told her she was not allowed to nurse her baby there.
A supervisor later came over and told Sandra because of the many cameras and “perverts taking pictures” it would have been more appropriate to feed the baby in the family restroom, which, it turns out, is nothing more than a toilet.
If I was Sandra, would I have been ticked? You betcha.
But do I think this has been a wee bit blown out of proportion? You betcha.
Sandra was somewhere where she should not have been so that usher was well within her right to ask her to move. We only have Sandra’s side of the story and not the usher’s but the matter in which the message was given was allegedly abrupt and rude.
Umm, OK. I get that.
I have repeatedly been the victim of religious bigotry. But if I held a protest for every situation I encountered where I was offended or someone violated my rights, I’d be a busy and bitter woman.
The Colorado Rockies issued an apology and claimed it was all just a miscommunication and that the issue was not about the breastfeeding but rather a reprimand that she could not nurse where she was sitting. When I mentioned this to the Nurse In organizer, she claimed “Though they [the Rockies] did release a half-hearted press release, no apology has been given to Sandra or her family.”
I get that, too. I often make my kids redo apologies when I feel they’re not from the heart. And let’s face it: big corporate publicists are just trying to legally cover their butts. The entire situation was poorly handled from start to finish by the staffers at the Colorado Rockies.
To stage a Nurse In might have been appropriate had the Rockies not responded and tried to brush this under the table. But they did address the issue, though not to the satisfaction of some.
No woman should ever be denied the right to breastfeed in public because it is legal in Colorado. I personally nursed both of my children in public and always ensured I was being discreet like Sandra allegedly was.
But I see the other side, too. This may not be just about the right to breastfeed in public. The details are murky because Sandra was not where she –or anyone else—was supposed to be. She likely would have gone unnoticed if she would have remained in her own seat. A few ignorant and rude staffers are not a representation of the corporation’s official policy and this was addressed in the apology they issued.
One thing I am resolved about: It just seems fruitless to hold a Nurse In to make a point about a point that, in this particular situation, may not need to be made.
What is your opinion? Was Sandra well within her right to breastfeed where she did? How do you feel about the way the Colorado Rockies handled the situation? Discuss politely, please. Malicious comments directed at any of the parties will be deleted.