When 30-year-old Megan Christopherson was removed from the pit at a Brad Paisley concert with her 4-month-old strapped to her chest, police maintained that she could be found liable for child endangerment. But Christopherson is claiming that she was kicked out because she breastfed her child in the crowd.
In the video that Christopherson posted (that has since been taken down), the police officer told her that her being yanked out of the concert had nothing to do with breastfeeding. Rather, they were concerned that the infant could have been crushed in the pit or suffered eardrum injuries as the child, who was peacefully sleeping, was not wearing protective earmuffs. The officer claimed he reported the incident to the DA's office and told her that they would file a Child Protective Services referral if she did not leave the pit area.
Via NBC San Diego:
"The Chula Vista Police Department's involvement in the incident was due to the welfare and safety of the infant and not due to a mother's legal right to breastfeed in public," it said in a statement released Friday.
But Christopherson, her friends, and other concertgoers maintained that security did not approach her until after she started breastfeeding her child because she was making other people uncomfortable. According to a friend, security stood next to her and even photographed her.
"I'm shocked. I'm disgusted at our society that women are shamed into nursing in bathrooms or their cars or feeding their baby a bottle only, because they're scared to nurse in public," she said.
"It was completely a cop-out. They're trying to cover this up because they know they legally can't remove me for nursing," she added.
She also maintains that her daughter was in no danger because they were just listening to country music:
"It's a country concert," she told ABC 10. "I wasn't at a death metal or a rap concert. It's pretty somber at country concerts."
"I trust my motherly instinct that if my baby's ears hurt, she would cry, and then I would move out," she told NBC.
Um, I don't know the first thing about babies, but wouldn't you want to never put your infant child in a position that it would have to cry in pain to let you know that you're doing something wrong? Also, judging by that video, country concerts aren't exactly somber. I respect a mother's right to breastfeed, but having a 4-month-old at a concert without ear protection just seems like a bad idea.
Christopherson opted to leave the venue with her infant, her 8-year-old daughter, and a full refund. She's in the process of hiring legal representation.