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Creative Commons/Christina Rutz

Top Talker:
Woman “Kicked Out” Of Concert: Was It For Breastfeeding Or Bringing Baby?

A California mother, Megan Christopherson, is claiming that she was thrown out of a Brad Paisley concert for breastfeeding, but she and the Chula Vista Police Department have different stories. Christopherson says that she was approached by security and asked to stop breastfeeding because it was making other concertgoers feel uncomfortable. The CVPD says their involvement was due to the welfare and safety of the baby.

Christopherson posted a video of the confrontation on YouTube (which has been removed). In the video, a security officer says to her, “Your child doesn’t have hearing protection on. The crowd is going to start surging forward. Where you’re at, your child could get crushed. We’re afraid of your child’s eardrums being hurt.”

Christopherson argues that her baby was sleeping peacefully. She says, “I trust my motherly instinct that if my baby’s ears hurt, she would cry, and then I would move. She was sleeping contently.”

Christopherson was given two choices: to relocate to a seated area in the amphitheater free of charge, or to leave and receive a full refund on her concert ticket. She chose to get a refund and leave.She maintains that because she can’t legally be asked to leave for breastfeeding, the officers “covered it up” by claiming it was for her baby’s safety.

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The first few headlines for this story that I saw made this issue seem like Christopherson was asked to leave the concert because she was breastfeeding. As a huge supporter of breastfeeding, public or otherwise, I was prepared to be in a huff for her. She lost my support after I read that she was given the option to move to an area safer for the baby.

If the reason Christopherson was asked to move were truly a don’t-breastfeed-here issue, why would she be moved within the same venue, but still around people who could possibly be offended by breastfeeding? That sounds fishy to me. It is certainly possible that one of the security guards who approached her said something about breastfeeding. Given some people’s level of discomfort with public nursing, that Christopherson was breastfeeding probably did draw attention to her.

What happened to Christopherson has little to nothing to do with breastfeeding, which she has a right to do in public. The issue is that she took a 4-month-old baby to a concert, which—unless it was against the venue’s age restrictions—she also has a right to do. I think this is a case of deflection because she was basically called out for not using good judgment. A concert is no place for a baby. The pit of a concert is even less of a place for a baby. The noise level, the drunk people, and the high possibility of being caught in the crush of a surge would make ME think twice about being there, much less a baby.

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What do you say about the reasons Christopherson was approached? What about taking a baby to a concert—would you do it? Sound off below or on Facebook.