Sunday, August 30, 2009

Outraged and Offended by Isotoner (by Liz)

Phila's excellent post yesterday on Fay Weldon asked the question, "Who wants to be outraged and offended and tense all the time?"

This is exactly how I felt this week while discussing the case of the Isotoner employee who was fired for taking unauthorized breaks to pump breast milk. Not only did her employee fire her, but the Ohio Supreme Court upheld the firing. Read more about it here

An excerpt, "According to the trial court, “Allen gave birth over five months prior to her termination from [Isotoner]. Pregnant [women] who give birth and chose not to breastfeed or pump their breasts do not continue to lactate for five months. Thus, Allen’s condition of lactating was not a condition relating to pregnancy but rather a condition related to breastfeeding. Breastfeeding discrimination does not constitute gender discrimination."

The case itself is disturbing enough. But the reaction to it is equally disturbing. Most people I know hadn't heard about it. Of course, the news cycle has been dominated by Senator Kennedy all week, but when I did mention it to people, I did not get what I felt was the appropriate level of shock, outrage, indigantion…or, oh I don’t know…something, anything.

So here I will admit my weakness. When I hear about cases like this, and I feel alone in my reaction to them, sometimes I wonder just what Phila wrote, "Who wants to be outraged and offended and tense all the time?" Is it easier just to go along?

Okay, moment of weakness has passed. I am outraged, offended and tense about this case. And I am willing to stay that way as long as necessary.

I say, better to be outraged, offended and tense all the time, than to be less than who I am.