''Never cross a breastfeeding mother'' should be near the top of life's adages.
Sunrise presenter David Koch has found himself the target of indignant women across Australia after adverse comments about public breastfeeding he made on the Seven Network program on Friday.
In response to a story about a Queensland mother being asked to be more discreet with her breastfeeding at a public pool, Koch said it was ''fair enough'' that an attendant had asked her to move.
He later tweeted that, while agreeing with the legal right of mothers to breastfeed in public, doing it discreetly was a ''common courtesy to others''. And he said on Sunrise: ''I've never seen it done in such a high-traffic area.''
The reaction has been heated, with threats that the Sunrise studio in Martin Place would be swamped by up to 800 angry breastfeeding advocates on Monday with protesting mothers bearing babies and baring breasts, under the plans of a Facebook group called Sunrise Nurse-In.
The comments drew a stinging riposte from the mother at the centre of the controversy, Liana Webster, posted on the Nurse-in Facebook page.
''I was … in an indoor pool with approximately seven people in and around the pool, which I would not exactly call 'high traffic'. You do not know the facts so you may as well not comment,'' she wrote.
The comments prompted an immediate backlash with enraged nursing mothers and other breastfeeding supporters setting up a Facebook page to encourage people to participate in the Sunrise Nurse-In on Monday.
"A nurse-in is without doubt needed at the Sunrise studio in Sydney,’’ the page says. ‘‘Join us on Monday morning to take a stand against this unfair view.
"Participants are asked to arrive at 7am (AEDT)."
By Sunday 565, people had indicated they would attend the nurse-in, with 228 ‘‘maybes’’.
The event has gained publicity with media personality and mamamia publisher Mia Freedman condemning Koch’s comments on her widely read blog.
Comment was being sought from Seven.
smh.com.au, with AAP