Friday, February 18, 2011

Breast Feeding and Cross Cutting Cleavage

I wasted some time reading this article, so I thought I'd spread the pain.  Apparently, there is a tempest in a teacup over Michele Obama's efforts to encourage breast feeding.  Apparently, both support and outrage cross political lines.  My personal reaction is that there is nothing nanny state about promoting public health issues, this is an age old function of government.

What I find absurd is that we're making our already far too complex tax code more complex by one line by making breast pumps tax deductible.  Since very few except the wealthy itemize, and they can afford a few hundred dollars for a breast pump, I don't see the point.  What I would like to see is some programs that actually work to make motherhood and employment easier to juggle for the working class and single mothers in particular, while there's probably a few that will benefit from this I believe for most it will do little to nothing.

Let's not even get into the idea that some people are outraged that the government is promoting something that their life style doesn't allow them to do (perhaps the government could mandate that women be given some time to use a breast pump, or would that be too nanny state).  Of course some government programs aren't going to equally apply to everyone, doesn't make them less beneficial to the people that can benefit or that need the encouragement.  If you have a good job that won't let you use the pump, you're probably not the target for the program in the first place.  Just silly.

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