Thursday, Feb. 19, 2009

Jerk of the Day: Julaine Appling

By Lisa Kaiser
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We all know how Julaine Appling, the self-appointed morality watchdog, loves to “strengthen and preserve marriage, family, life and liberty in Wisconsin” by demonizing gays.

Appling, the head of Wisconsin Family Council and its political arm, Wisconsin Family Action, led the movement to enshrine discrimination in our state constitution by defining marriage as between one man and one woman while denying same-sex partners the right to form a civil union.

Then her organization created highly misleading campaign ads against candidates that accepted donations from gays and lesbians who happen to live outside of Wisconsin. Appling even trumpeted her crazed witch hunt on her organization’s website.

Now she’s horrified to learn that the recently introduced Senate Bill 16 would protect women who breastfeed in public. Appling’s concerned that breastfeeding is immodest, and would “offend” people who can’t avert their eyes—say, those on a plane or bus. Breastfeeding moms should be cordoned off in specially designated breastfeeding rooms, she argues—the very antithesis of what the bill is trying to do.

“At the very least, we suggest that a modesty amendment be introduced for SB 16, requiring that the breastfeeding mother be discreet (e.g., use a blanket or a towel) in order to preserve modesty. Breastfeeding is a natural thing but that does not mean it has to take place in a public setting without any regard to discretion or modesty and with no regard for others, including children and young people, who may have no way to avoid the situation,” reads the memo she sent to all state legislators.

Seriously. I’m not making this up.

Appling is the gift that keeps on giving. Unfortunately, she’s giving us a viewpoint that’s better suited for the Dark Ages.


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