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Not everyone's thrilled about breast-feeding mania
Glamorizing breast-feeding has been all the rage lately. But are we overstating the argument? - photo by JJ Feinauer
Australian fashion model Nicole Trunfio caused a stir late last month when she appeared on the cover of Elle Australia breast-feeding her son, Zion.

"I think breast-feeding is really important," Trunfio told Good Morning America, and apparently the 29-year-old model was unaware that photos taken of her breast-feeding would be part of the magazine spread let alone the cover but she's pleased by the photo.

"I feel like it's just a natural thing," she told GMA, "and it should be allowed and should not be discriminated against ... it's a woman feeding her child, her hungry child, which is natural."

The story doesn't end there, however. As it turns out, editions of Elle Australia that were sent to newsstands (as opposed to issues delivered through subscriptions) didn't feature the photo, and some breast-feeding activists weren't happy about the cover-up.

According to Inquisitr, the release, and reaction to, Trunfio's magazine cover resulted in the trending hashtag #NormalizeBreastFeeding, which reached over 100,000 tweets.

The push to make public breast-feeding less taboo is nothing new. As Deseret News National reported last July, there have been multiple organized movements recently to reverse policies in stores such as Wal-Mart and Barnes and Noble that limit public breast-feeding. Pope Francis even showed his support for the practice last January.

In some ways, one might argue that we're in the midst of a mania over public breast-feeding. Last month, City Lab's Jessica Leigh Hester reported that airports are apparently seeking to be more accommodating to mothers who choose to breast-feed.

"Earlier this month, free-standing lactation pods were installed at New Yorks LaGuardia, JFK, and Newark airports," Leigh wrote on May 11. "In addition to New York, lactation stations are up and running in General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee and the Burlington International Airport in Vermont."

But there are those, such as The Daily Beast's Russell Saunders, who argue it might be time for a re-evaluation of "breast-feeding mania."

"The moral freight that is attached to a new mothers decision whether or not to breastfeed has gotten grossly out of hand," Saunders wrote Tuesday. "Among nursings most ardent advocates, choosing to give your child formula is accorded roughly the same respect as announcing you plan to feed the baby a steady diet of Brandy Alexanders."

According to Saunders, the issue isn't whether breast-feeding is a good idea (he believes it is); it's whether those who choose not to do so should feel ostracized by society.

"While I certainly agree that supporting those families who choose to breast-feed and encouraging the practice is beneficial," he argued, "theres something vaguely coercive about restricting their option to do otherwise."

As the controversies surrounding breast-feeding, public or otherwise, continue to swirl, Saunders simply hopes mothers are always afforded choices that fit their personal preferences.

"Do I think breast-feeding a new baby is best? Yes. But that hardly means the babies who get some or all of their nutrition from formula are less well-loved or suffering some sort of harm."
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