#Breastfeeding and #NASCAR: Not So Different After All

I’ll put it out there straight: I’m not a NASCAR fan. I will even go so far to say I hate everything surrounding NASCAR: the culture, the petroleum usage, the NOISE. But with millions of fans and billions of dollars in revenue, I am clearly in the minority when it comes to opinions about the, ahem, sport.

When NASCAR driver Kasey Kahne, a driver whose name I recognize even though I’m not a fan, sent out some inflammatory Tweets this week about witnessing a mother breastfeeding in the grocery store, I became livid. (See the original Tweets HERE since many have been deleted from his feed.) What makes me most angry is the fact that Kahne didn’t think twice about putting his opinion out into the world because, in his mind, his opinion is shared by many. Based on the comments following various news articles (here and here for example), and Kahne’s half-hearted apology on his Facebook page, I can only assume that his thinking is correct. Nevertheless, Kahne’s comments have outraged many a breastfeeding mama and lactivist the web over for his harsh reaction to a perfectly natural process.

But the lactivists and the NASCAR folk really need to get on the same page and realize that breastfeeding and NASCAR are, essentially, the same, ahem, sport.

WARNING FOR THE EASILY-APPALLED: There are some photos of NIPPLES coming up. Be cautious.

First and foremost, it’s all about the boobs, right?

nascar kasey kahne breastfeeding issue

And neither of us could go to work without our pump.

During the course of a day, a NASCAR driver and a breastfeeding mom might have to deal with a toothless, drooling guy thirsty for more of your sponsoring beverage.

And everyone knows that squirting said beverages at the finish line is par for the course.

At the end of the day, it’s just good to know that we can all accept seeing a little nipple now and then to do our job to the best of our ability.

If you had a giggle or if you’d like to spread the message that “boobs and nipples are normal,” please consider sharing this post by clicking one of the buttons below. Get more fun by Subscribing to Healthful Mama.

So, what do you think?

32 Responses to #Breastfeeding and #NASCAR: Not So Different After All

  1. The Purple Lady December 29, 2011 at 12:21 pm #

    Wow! The connection between the two is astounding!!! 🙂 The last photo was the clincher for me though. I cannot stop laughing.
    On a personal note:
    Breastfeeding should be more acceptable than bottlefeeding in my opinion. I proudly breastfed all four of my children anywhere I needed to in order to be part of society and not some shut-in just because I wanted to feed my children in the most natural way possible.
    Shame on anyone being negative about such a beautiful, healthy thing for both mother and child.

    • HealthfulMama December 29, 2011 at 12:30 pm #

      Thank you for your comments! =D

  2. Dana S. December 29, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

    Love it! Great post.

    • HealthfulMama December 29, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

      Thank you! 🙂

  3. Springwolf December 29, 2011 at 2:40 pm #

    I’m a Nascar fan. It is a sport by the way. But not all Nascar fans are alike.

    When I heard about Kahne’s outburst, my first reaction was ‘what an immature idiot’ which in my opinion he has always been.

    Perhaps because I’m much older, lived through more, gone through more hardships in life, learned more about living in a society that is WAY too puritanical for it’s own good. I think many are still stuck in the 1500s when the puritans came to this new world where Native Americans lived amongst the balance of nature, openness and breastfeeding in public and ruined it for the rest of us.

    People don’t turn away when a Momma dog is feeding her puppies, or baby deer is drinking from Momma. But lord, put a human boob out there and everyone’s mind goes to the gutter and you can see all the hushed whispers of deviant minds complaining about sexual overtones.

    Those offended need to get a grip and grow up.

    • HealthfulMama December 29, 2011 at 3:01 pm #

      Well said. Thanks!

    • Springwolf December 29, 2011 at 3:08 pm #

      I try. 😉
      And I should have said..great article on your part too.

      Not to get off the topic..but as an FYI…
      Nascar uses ethanol for fuel. The ‘noise’ is one of the things we like about going to the races. And when your favorite driver is going around a turn pulling more g’s than the average fighter pilot, it’s not only a sport, but they’re athletes. So since we’re sharing opinions about Nascar, let me share one..
      Nascar: Is it a sport? Are Drivers Athletes? @ http://evilwordsmith.com/?p=148

      Never know..maybe I can turn you into a fan. ..well as long as you like my guy – 3 time Champ Tony Stewart. 😉

    • HealthfulMama December 29, 2011 at 3:45 pm #

      I had a feeling I wasn’t exactly correct about petroleum use in the race vehicles, but they don’t run completely on ethanol, correct? It’s a mix. As for the definition of sport, well, that’s another post! I have always, said, though, that the pit crews are the true heroes of NASCAR. 🙂 I don’t know about turning into a fan; you might be pushing it 😉

    • Springwolf December 29, 2011 at 5:48 pm #

      All 3 series switched to Sunoco Green E15, which is a blend. It is a clean-burning, high-octane motor fuel, and the ethanol portion is produced from renewable resources that Sunoco gets from the Midwest.

      No vehicle in the U.S. can run on pure ethanol, unless it has some major modifications to make the fuel burn. So they’re at least doing something to improve.

      This year for the 2012 season, they are introducing fuel injection to further this cause, which will allow them to increase the ethanol blend. That’s more than what some of the car companies are doing.

      You are right, the pit crews are the heroes during the races. But they’re not the only ones. The physical stamina/condition of the drivers have been compared to marathon runners. They too are athletes.

      I like the way you think. So I’ll keep workin’ on ya. 😉

    • teresa December 31, 2011 at 4:54 pm #

      Go Tony! I am a relatively new fan to NASCAR (3 seasons) and I am impressed with the skill and strategy drivers employ. My driver is Ryan Newman who is a college educated fellow, a patriot and a charitable fellow. Why, oh WHY must jerks like KK be the introduction to the sport for many? It is darn depressing.

  4. The Crunchy Wife December 29, 2011 at 4:59 pm #

    Great post! I hope Kasey stumbles upon this post 🙂

  5. Heather Tomasello December 29, 2011 at 6:05 pm #

    Awesome. Just awesome

  6. Lisa December 29, 2011 at 6:20 pm #

    Oh my goodness, this is a classic!!! I hope it gets the many hits/retweets/etc that it should!


  7. Chrissy December 29, 2011 at 10:57 pm #

    LOL. Really. I’m laughing out loud. My husband thinks I’m crazy. Good job! Spot on!

  8. Sarah Jane December 30, 2011 at 10:24 am #

    This is a great post. I was laughing for over a minute. And the beverages at the finish line cracked me up, it’s so true.

  9. Julia December 30, 2011 at 2:17 pm #

    Really enjoyed this post, especially the comparisons at the end. See those pics, I would rather be a breastfeeding fan than a nascar fan anyday!

  10. Hillary December 30, 2011 at 3:07 pm #

    I grew up around NASCAR. I’m just about the only person in my immedaite and extended family that isn’t a fan, but I still know quite a bit about the culture and people since I’ve always been surrounded by it.
    I can definitely assure you that Kahne’s opinion is the minority. My mom nursed all three of her children at NASCAR events and claims to have never heard anything negative about it.
    The comparisons though I have to admit are absolutely hilarious!

    • HealthfulMama December 30, 2011 at 3:09 pm #

      Hillary, I think the idea of a mom nursing at a NASCAR event is awesome! I’ll bet your mama could change a diaper one-handed better than anyone in the pit crews! ;)Thanks for your comments!

    • Hillary December 30, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

      LMAO, about 10 years ago (when I was 16) I was watching one of the other pit crew members child who was about 9 months old. The baby’s father and my father were out in the garage working on the car when they come bursting in the house holding two baby dolls (that they had fished out of my and my sister’s old toy boxes). Apparently they had been trash talking each other about who could change a diaper faster. They proceeded to set up their “station” and lay out the “tools” (wipes, powder, soiled bag) and have a diaper changing contest right there. I remember my Dad bragging for about a month after and always adding in that his youngest baby was 14.

    • HealthfulMama December 30, 2011 at 4:34 pm #

      LOL! 😀

  11. Jen December 30, 2011 at 4:10 pm #

    Okay, I’m one of those people in the middle. As much as everyone likes to say “It’s Natural! It’s the way it’s supposed to be” the real fact of the matter is that, in American society, the predominant idea of breasts is one that is sexualized. You can’t get away from it. And claim all you want, you say “breast” to the average american person and the first thing they think of will NOT be breastfeeding.

    On that note— being that the breast has become so highly sexualized, I can understand why people would be taken aback. I personally don’t agree with women just flopping their breasts out everywhere and anywhere to nurse just because they have a baby. Yes, you have a right to nurse anytime/anywhere. But can’t we be a little modest?

    Let’s be serious here, before you got pregnant, you would NEVER have whipped out your breast in public. In fact, it would be illegal to do so. You know this, I know this, everyone knows this. And, yes, you have to feed your baby. But a light draping over your shoulder, perhaps? Be a LITTLE modest, perhaps, b/c you know other people’s feelings?

    I don’t get how these women’s brains change so significantly where all of a sudden they’re walking around a grocery store with their boob hanging out with a baby attached to it… I mean, come on, I’m all for nursing, but REALLY? I think it’s just flagrant.

    Sometimes I feel like the “lactivists” as you put it are coming on TOO strong.

    I mean, that’s like someone walking around with racist or bigoted pictures/wording on their shirt just because they have a right to free speech. Yes, okay, you believe it, you have a right to believe in it, but you don’t DO THAT in public (well, most people) because you understand that it may be offensive to other people.

    I dunno… nurse all you want in public, fine with me, but for heaven’s sakes, cover up a little bit while you’re doing so! I mean, my boobs are functional AND sexy, and I can’t ignore the fact that everyone else out there looks at them the same way!

    • HealthfulMama December 30, 2011 at 4:26 pm #

      You bring up an interesting point, Jen, one that I hit on in not-so-many words in my post. “That’s like someone walking around with a racist or bigoted picture on their shirt just because they have the right to free speech.” I’d like breastfeeding in public to stop drawing such negative attention that anyone with a Twitter handle (ahem, such as @kaseykahne) doesn’t think twice about posting a negative comment. So, Mr. Kahne was shocked/appalled/grossed out/whatever. If Americans were a bit more educated about the positives of breastfeeding, the circumstances surrounding it, and weren’t so over-sexualized to the point of forgetting about the FUNCTIONAL purpose of breasts, his immediate reaction wouldn’t have been to Tweet “#nasty” to the world even if he thought it.

      Additionally, your comment about “can’t we be a little modest?” Does this mean that we should request women who are showing their cleavage to change their attire in a public place? To stop wearing bathing suits? By requesting such, it perpetuates the idea that breasts are for private, “hush-hush” sex and not “normal” to see except to purposely entice and excite.

      I appreciate your comments but I have to respectfully disagree with some of your points. I suppose I live by the idea that just because something is “the way it is” in America doesn’t mean that it has to always be that way!

    • Sarah @ MindfullyFrugalMom January 4, 2012 at 10:09 pm #

      Actually, in NYS public parks, it’s NOT illegal to whip out your breast, breastfeeding or not, since 1992!

  12. Jennifer December 30, 2011 at 8:39 pm #

    I’m a coverer for as long as my baby will have it. When she decides she’s done being covered, I can’t just decide she’s done eating.

    Today while my family was out eating lunch, my baby got hungry. I put the nursing cover on (my choice)and began to nurse her. A lady across the aisle proceeded to stare at me the entire time I fed the baby. My three-year-old began to stare at the lady. I told her it was not polite to stare at people, and to please pay attention to the things at her own table. Unfortunately the woman did not get the hint. She proceeded to stare/glare. I covered. It didn’t help. Should I have let my baby go hungry? Sat in an unsanitary bathroom? Left my family, thereby demonstrating to my daughter that her sister is not worthy to eat at our same table?

    Racism and bigotry are oppressive. Breastfeeding is not. Pedophiles sexualize children – it’s not the child’s issue. If someone decides to view my breast as sexual while I feed my baby, that’s his/her issue. Not mine, not my baby’s. We are using it for its intended purpose.

    • Clara December 30, 2011 at 11:37 pm #

      The only times I’ve had negative comments were when I was completely covered with a blanket or nursing cover. The drapey thing seems to act like a neon sign that says “LADY FEEDING A BABY WITH HER BEWBIES RIGHT HERE!!!!” It amazes me that someone could be so offended by the idea that my breast was present when it wasn’t even visible (literally — in one case, the only skin you could see was my head and one hand — it was winter, and I was wearing a freaking turtle neck, for heaven’s sake!). I’m all for discretion, and I definitely don’t think women need to “flop” anything to breastfeed. But out of all the women I’ve known who have breastfed in public, I’ve never once seen any boobs flopped around.

      The times I’ve been (discreetly) feeding without a cover, no one has even noticed what I was doing. A few people have come up to admire the “sleeping” baby, and when I tell them she’s eating, they sometimes look confused, but once they get it, they back off a bit until she’s finished. Even without a cover, no one has ever seen my breast in public.

  13. Sidney December 30, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    Well said, Jennifer! I couldn’t agree more. My son is 9 months old. I have always nursed him. When he was younger, I would use a nursing cover when we were at a restaurant (also my choice), but now that he is so engaged with the world around him, he does NOT want to be covered up. And honestly, I can’t blame him. I try to nurse as discreetly as is possible with a nine month old baby who is lifting my shirt up and latching on and off to look at what just made that noise or to see where someone is. When I nurse my baby, I don’t try to get attention. If anything, I try to blend in because sometimes it can be tough and difficult, especially for new moms who are still trying to get comfortable with nursing. Every woman is different and every baby is different. Women nursing are doing what is best for their babies, and that should be all that matters. I went to school in New Orleans, and during Mardi GRAS, you never heard anyone in the French Quarter to stop flashing for beads. If that is acceptable, even expected and rewarded, then why is nursing a baby “nasty”. All I can say is that I feel sorry for that ignorant NASCAR guy’s future kids.

  14. Janet December 30, 2011 at 10:47 pm #

    Of all my nursing in public and experience seeing others nursing in public I have never seen a breast “hanging” out. I choose to nurse discreetly while uncovered in public because my nursling doesn’t like being covered. I might let things “hang” out in front of family/friends that I know could care less but that’s not at the mall. I think breastfeeding moms should be given a whole lot more respect for what they do and that just because you know what they are doing, covered or uncovered, their breasts are not flopping around uncontrolled for all to see.

  15. Lee December 31, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    Love this thread. The comparisons are hilarious. I must add, to the poster who pointed out that NASCAR is a sport–have you ever seen a mother try to nurse a rowdy toddler? Yep, nursing is a sport too!

    • HealthfulMama December 31, 2011 at 12:19 pm #

      I would have to agree that the toddler-wrangling is certainly a sport 😉

  16. Reticula December 31, 2011 at 3:29 pm #

    Spot on! My daughter is breastfeeding my 5-month-old granddaughter and I just love watching her do something or loving and perfect, something the two of us shared all those years ago. On Christmas Eve I was invited to sing with a church choir (not my own) and she came to church with the baby. When she needed to step out to nurse, a woman directed her to the bathroom. The bathroom! Who eats in a bathroom? Probably people who drink beer from straws.

    Thanks for a great post and a laugh.

  17. teresa December 31, 2011 at 5:03 pm #

    I loved the article & shared it with the love of my life- a huge NASCAR fan. He loved it! K Kahnes remarks? He did not like at all. My guy is in total support of BFing and appreciates all the benefits it brings to our children.

    Here in Virginia there is a law permitting women to NIP. The collegesall have a pumping room and breast feeding room AND they are not located in a restroom

    In a society where nudity is accepted on telvision and porn, sadly, is becoming more accepted, it is a real pity that ignorance like this is still around.

  18. Cathrine January 1, 2012 at 12:31 am #

    Haha yeah…4 hours of left turns and 30 minutes of nipple sucking- very similar. I didn’t read the article, I’m too tired, but this is what came to mind.

Leave a Reply

Website Designed By Clever Kiwi