I was hoping I might not ever come to this but it did. First Lady Michelle Obama has been attacked, seriously attacked mind you, for supporting breast-feeding for mothers with young children!
From an ABC News blog 2/15/11
Rep. Michele Bachmann spoke out Tuesday against First Lady Michelle Obama’s reported support of tax breaks for breast pumps.
On Laura Ingraham’s radio show Tuesday, the Tea Party favorite criticized Mrs. Obama for reportedly endorsing steps she warned could lead to a “nanny state.”
"I've given birth to five babies and I breast fed every single one of these babies," Bachmann, R-Minn., said. "To think that government has to go out and buy my breast pump for my babies. I mean, you want to talk about the nanny state? I think you just got a new definition -- a new definition of the nanny."
The IRS announced last week that breast pumps and supplies that assist lactation are medical care under Internal Revenue Code “because, like obstetric care, they are for the purpose of affecting a structure or function of the body of the lactating woman.”
Bachmann, who is in her third term and considering a challenge to President Obama in 2012, declined to elaborate on her comments through a spokesperson Tuesday evening. The Office of the First Lady also declined to comment.
This is not mind you a program to out and out buy breast-milk storage systems, no, just a tax break. Yet this modest change in the tax laws has brought condemnation in the American far Right perennial campaign to condemn everything not controlled by their leadership as bad for the nation.
It seems the First Lady has made speeches in the past suggesting it would be good for mothers to breast-feed children at least in the first six months after birth. Scientific studies have shown it reduces the likelihood that said babies will grow up to be obese.
(above) From a April 10, 2010 CBS Evening News report with Harry Smith
Nobody could be against mothers breast-feeding their kids, right? Surely there are some points in the health care spectrum which politicians and professional special- pleaders in America can agree on, right?
But this is not so. To some, like Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachman, Sarah Palin--who snarled that Mrs. Obama was only advocating more mother's milk use because the price of store bought milk was getting higher-- and the usual cast of knee-jerk reactionaries, this is actually a step toward.....I don't know what...you tell me...I'm guessing they fear the spectre of centralized economic planning, all centered around a nation of families who let breast pump tax breaks blind them to the loss of freedom as we know it...yeah, that sounds like the group I'm thinking about.
Is there no end to this hysterical anti-government hyperbole? Well no, as this selection from an article on the asinine imbroglio todays' Washington Post shows.
"Her worldview on child rearing is totally oriented to institutionalizing children!" said Cathy Ruse, a senior legal fellow at the Family Research Council. "Giving tax breaks for breast pumps helps only those moms who are working outside the home and does nothing for us stay-at-home moms. This is consistent with President Obama's pledge to increase the childcare tax credit as opposed to the child tax credit, incentivizing putting your kids in daycare over any other childrearing arrangement."
The far Right in the United States is so zeroed in on the track of disagreeing with anything government does to help working families that they attack even a small incentive to reduce childhood and adult illness.
Color me gobsmacked.
It's come to this. Good thing Mrs. Obama didn't come out for a heliocentric solar system or helmets for high school football players; then she'd really have kicked up a tempest!