Actress Bette Midler faced backlash Thursday on Twitter after defending nationwide baby formula shortages and advising that women “try breastfeeding.”
The actress re-posted a tweet from MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle about the baby formula shortages, writing, “TRY BREASTFEEDING! It’s free and available on demand.”
TRY BREASTFEEEDING! It’s free and available on demand. https://t.co/15xetgg1ps
— bettemidler (@BetteMidler) May 13, 2022
A variety of social media users were quick to respond to Midler, sharing their reactions.
CBS News Digital White House reporter Kathryn Watson suggested Midler learn before tweeting “ignorant things” as well as have “some compassion,” which is “also free and available on demand.”
Learning before tweeting ignorant things and having some compassion is also free and available on demand https://t.co/HMOZxBIPDW
— Kathryn Watson (@kathrynw5) May 13, 2022
Ilyse Hogue, president of Purpose, respectfully called out Midler’s “very bad take,” writing, “I had twins. I didn’t produce enough milk for both. Without formula, I would have had to have chosen which one got to eat. To say nothing of kids that get separated from the birth mothers very young.” (RELATED: Biden Admin Knew The Baby Formula Shortage Was Coming In February)
Bette, respectfully, this is a very bad take. I had twins. I didn’t produce enough milk for both. Without formula, I would have had to have chosen which one got to eat. To say nothing of kids that get separated from the birth mothers very young.
— Ilyse Hogue (@ilyseh) May 13, 2022
Clara Jeffrey, editor-in-chief of Mother Jones, said she was “extremely” disappointed in Midler’s position. “Extremely, profoundly even, disappointed that you’re taking this line,” Jeffrey said. “Yes, the monopolies are real. … But that doesn’t mean that breast-only (or even at all) is doable for many many women.”
Extremely, profoundly even, disappointed that you’re taking this line. Yes, the monopolies are real and @Nestle in particular has had evil practices. But that doesn’t mean that breast-only (or even at all) is doable for many many women: https://t.co/Bzozt62yB6
— Clara Jeffery (@ClaraJeffery) May 13, 2022
A national baby formula shortage American parents in recent weeks, with 40% of the top baby formula products being out of stock as of April 24.
Midler’s comments follow recent allegations made by Republican Florida Rep. Kat Cammack that illegal migrants are receiving ample supplies of baby formula at the southern border while American parents are forced to do without.