Friday, September 10, 2010
Some comments* in the last post reminded me once again of a recurrent thorn in the side of many breastfeeding advocates: the slur "Breastfeeding Nazi" or, slightly more punchily (though no more wittily), "TitNazi". It comes up frequently in the comments threads on any article or post where lactivism is discussed, particularly if the topic is a controversial one, but even if it's a fairly benign jumping-off point, the ensuing discussion still sometimes spirals off into some pretty nasty territory.
This really bothers some advocates out there, and both Amber Strocel and PhD in Parenting have written eloquently about their objections to the term and how insane it is to compare breastfeeding support to, you know, the mass murder of millions. Other lactivists feel that overreacting to this moniker is, well, an overreaction, and argue that while they disagree with using such a slur themselves, and that the term is definitely insensitive and inappropriate, it's more about fascism than it is about comparison to actual genocide. And thus, from this POV, overreacting to the term distracts from the real issues.
I honestly see good points from each lactivist camp, I really do. Some might say that's the diplomatic tendency inherent to the Libra ascendant in my chart. Others might say the very concept is malarkey. And I can see both sides. See, there I go again! Anyway, my problem with this whole thing? Bottom line? It's dull, unoriginal, and unimaginative. It's just plain LAZY. Really, all it does is draw attention to poor rhetorical skill and a rather embarrassing lack of creativity (substituting "boob" for "tit" isn't much of a flourish, guys).
If you're going to go there, go all the freaking way, man. I'm not a TitNazi, I'm a member of the Breastapo! La Leche League meetings? More like The Nursenburg Rallies. Lactation consultants? Elite officers of the Lactwaffe. Nurse-ins to protest businesses discriminating against breastfeeding moms? Why, that's a full-blown Titskrieg!
Can we invoke Godwin's Law* already (whereby the first person to make a comparison of their opponent's views to Hitler and/or Nazi Germany automatically forfeits the argument) and give this a rest once and for all?
*Not that the commenters herself was making this slur; they simply mentioned how it comes up in such conversations. Just wanted to be clear.
**Indeed, this is tongue-in-cheek, as much as my own punnery above.
** I looked around in vain to credit the original LOLbaby creation featured here. Do claim it, if it's yours! (And please don't be mad at me for besmirching it so.)