Lawmaker's breast-feeding post sets off Facebook firestorm - Dallas News |

Lawmaker's breast-feeding post sets off Facebook firestorm

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A Texas lawmaker who suggested that breast-feeding mothers should be "modest" and that a proposed bill on the topic goes "too far" is now facing backlash on Facebook.

State Rep. Debbie Riddle, a Republican from Houston, was referring to House Bill 1706 which was brought before a committee on Tuesday. It aims to promote breast-feeding and prohibit interference with or restriction of the right to breast-feed in public.

On her Facebook page she wrote, "Now, I am all in favor of breast feeding - however it is important for women to be modest while feeding their baby - and most women are modest and respectful. But, a bill that would allow for law suits if one "interfered" with a woman breast feeding is really going a bit far. If a business owner objects to a woman who is not being modest then be fearful of a law suit is government out of control. Most of our laws and bills being considered for law would not be necessary if people would simply be considerate and thoughtful of others. Needless to say - I am not supporting this bill."

Hundreds of commenters took offense to that opinion.

"I'm glad I don't have to deal with your ignorance and hypocrisy. Your idea of modesty is like me saying that the fat guy who chews with his mouth open cant go out to eat. You are a disgrace to women everywhere and I pity the poor constituents of your district," said Norm Holland.

"Perhaps if people were 'considerate' and 'thoughtful of others,' then breastfeeding women wouldn't feel the need to hide at home out of fear of having someone decide that simply feeding her baby is exhibitionist, flaunting, indiscreet, sexual, disgusting, gross, or any word other than breastfeeding," Angela Hartfelder posted.

"Its so crazy to me it's even an issue, it would be like me saying I allow people of all religions to shop at my store except muslims I allow all disabled people to shop here except ones that use wheelchairs. I allow all gay people to shop here except lesbians with short hair. And a politician says yeah, I should have the right to discriminate as I see fit against these protected classes without fear of a lawsuit, because they are offending my personal sense of modesty," added Vee Savage.

Riddle has not responded to media requests for comments.

State Rep. Jessica Farrar, the Democrat from Houston who authored the bill, told The Texas Tribune that the post "illustrates the problem" she hopes to address.

The bill was left pending in committee.

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