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Big Brass Blog is a group blog founded in February of 2005 by Pam Spaulding of Pam's House Blend and Melissa McEwan of Shakesville (formerly Shakespeare's Sister). The mission of this collaborative effort is to stand as the premiere forum where strong, enduring voices of Progressivism provide what liberal politics has been missing: the unapologetic, unrelenting voice of liberalism in the darkness visited upon our world by Right-wing extremists, their ruinous policies, and their hypocritical beliefs.

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19 September 2006

More on boobies

by: Pam

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Nothing like some boob envy or boob hating to make your day. While the big dust up over minority representation at the Clinton lunch was going on, there was a ridiculous and insulting (and quite frankly unhinged) column by Ann Althouse over Jessica at Feministing's pose in the notorious blogger photo that caused its own kerfluffle (see here, here, here). Jessica is in the front row in the gray shirt.

My comment: All I know is, I hope I'm not in any pix if I ever do get invited to such an event, because the boobie patrol will have way too much to deal with.

Jessica has decided to make lemons out of lemonade, or, to be more accurate, a T-shirt out of the gigantic boobie-hating dustup. BTW, 20% of the profits from T-shirt sales will go to Breast Cancer Action.

MadKane has a limerick:
Ode To Ann Althouse

Poor Ann Althouse! Jessica Valenti looked discernibly female in a blogger group photo with Bill Clinton, and Ann is aghast, appalled, and dismayed!

Ode To Ann Althouse
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Some bloggers are easily shocked
When gal lefties don't look like they're jocks.
Poor Ann can't abide
When such women don't hide
Their endowments beneath frumpy smocks.

More on the brouhaha from these folks: Pandagon, Feministe, Echidne, Emboldened, Broadsheet, Lawyers, Guns and Money, Booman Tribune, Feminist Law Professors, Ilyka Damen, Eschaton, The Mahablog, TGW, Steve Gilliard, The Heretik, Majikthise.
14 September 2006

Fear of the boobie, part 3

by: Pam

...a two-class system is emerging for working mothers. For those with autonomy in their jobs — generally, well-paid professionals — breast-feeding, and the pumping it requires, is a matter of choice...But for lower-income mothers — including many who work in restaurants, factories, call centers and the military — pumping at work is close to impossible, causing many women to decline to breast-feed at all, and others to quit after a short time.
The gap between the rich and the poor regarding the ability to breastfeed your child is out in the open in a stunning, but unsurprising piece in the NYT.

Lower income women receive the same message all mothers receive that breastfeeding your child is important; unfortunately, companies that these women work for see this need to pump as a "problem" even as they know this is discrimination.
It is a particularly literal case of how well-being tends to beget further well-being, and disadvantage tends to create disadvantage — passed down in a mother’s milk, or lack thereof.

...Public health authorities, alarmed at the gap between the breast-feeding haves and have-nots, are now trying to convince businesses that supporting the practice is a sound investment. “The Business Case for Breastfeeding,” an upcoming campaign by the Department of Health and Human Services, will emphasize recent findings that breast-feeding reduces absenteeism and pediatrician bills.
And it's definitely a case of class-based discrimination where lactation support is available as well. Stats from the CDC confirm that the corporate culture's lack of acceptance of lactation support has exacerbated the class gap:

* 73 percent of mothers now breast-feed their newborns. After six months the number drops to:
* 53 percent of college graduates
* 29 percent of mothers whose formal education ended with high school.



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