Bra Sizes & Breastfeeding in Texas-What’s the Real Story?

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Burnt Orange Report noticed an uptick this week in tweets and Facebook posts about Rep. Debbie Riddle, and we weren’t the only ones:

Currently, it is legal to breastfeed in public in any place where a person is legally allowed to be. In 2013, Rep. Jessica Farrar (D-Houston) proposed adding protections to the legislation and adding a cause of action and remedy should a breastfeeding person’s rights be infringed.

The Texas Tribune reported on H.B. 1706, and also covered how a moralizing Facebook post about the bill from Rep. Debbie Riddle (R-Tomball) stirred up controversy and quickly drew over 1,000 angry comments, largely from mothers.

The Houston Chronicle, monitoring Smith’s tweets and noting social media trends, ran news of the story resurfacing, pointing out came from a satirical site. They called bull.

So what’s the truth?

Burnt Orange Report wants to set the record straight on what really went down in the legislature on Texas DD-Day. 

Discussion opened with a perky aide speed-reading the bill. No one expected controversy.

Then, Rep. Riddle offered an amendment, supported by many of her GOP colleagues, that that no one who wears a size larger than a C-cup be allowed to breastfeed in public because of the disruption larger cup sizes would create, going to far as to point out that studies have shown that women with bigger breasts are not commonly associated with modest behavior.” 

Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview) surprised everyone by going to the back mic to oppose Riddle’s amendment, saying:

“The breast is good. God made it, and it wasn’t a mistake that government needs to fix.”

He then opened his bible to Timothy 4:4, and began to read aloud:

“Everything God created is good, and nothing can be refused if it can be received for Thanksgiving.”

A band of Republicans rushed to drag him away from the mic lest he start reading any other part of the bible that might contradict pending bills.

Trey Martinez Fischer (D-San Antonio) saved the day for the well-endowed (and their hungry infant offspring) by bringing up a point of order relating to the rule that any legislation relating to bra sizes must use the universal sizing standards rather than the traditional a-b-c-d sizing, and amending Riddle’s amendment to conform. 

As TMF knew it would, that point of order caused Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford) to go on a rant about universal cup size rules being a backdoor for Agenda 21. He also pointed out that his licensure was predicated on the traditional a-b-c-d sizing, and it would be an expensive intrusion into his rights to have to undergo a new certification.

Rep. Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston)B interjected to ask what license Stickland was referring to, at which point he took out his badge:

boob inspector badge

Rep. Thompson assured him that, no matter the sizing standards used, he was still a boob.

Stickland, looking pleased, got back to business, calling for a vote to reject Martinez Fischer’s amendment, and Riddle’s, too, to be sure Texas would be safe from UN intervention. 

Ultimately, even with Rep. Simpson willing to cross sides to vote with the Democrats, Farrar was unable to bring her bill to a vote to move it off the House floor and to the Senate.   

So, for now, the law remains as it was when adopted in 1995:

Sec. 165.002. RIGHT TO BREAST-FEED. A mother is entitled to breast-feed her baby in any location in which the mother is authorized to be.

Sec. 165.002.a Whatever size bra she wears. Or doesn’t.


This post was published on April 1. 2016 as part of BOR’s annual observation of April Fools Day. Posts published on this date are satirical and in no way report actual events (except for how closely they resemble actual events).


About Author

Andrea Greer

Andrea, an activist, fundraiser, feminist, writer, and baker, is not as tall as you think she is. She's been at this a long time, and wants to know what you are doing to make the pie higher and raise more hell. Her mother would like you to know she's got a law degree.

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