Lactivist Gets Apology From Pork

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"That’ll do pig, that’ll do," is how SEM-at-home mom and Lactivist Jennifer Laycock concluded her beef with the National Pork Board after receiving a heartfelt apology and the promise of a donation from to the Mother’s Milk Bank of Ohio.

The apology comes just days after a ham-fisted (ah, puns) cease and desist letter ordering Laycock, to borrow from the most clever headline about the row, "to remove her shirt." The shirt in question parodied the National Pork Board’s slogan, "The Other White Meat," by changing it slightly to "The Other White Milk," in order to raise awareness, support, and money for breastfeeding related causes.

Bloggers, especially in the SEM community, were outraged by the threats in the "lawyer crafted nasty gram," and by one especially egregious accusation to be noted later, and rallied behind Laycock by blogging to everybody they knew, threatening a Google bomb if the National Pork Board didn’t back off. And then, the Electronic Frontier Foundation stepped in on her behalf as well.

National Pork Board CEO Steve Murphy sent Laycock a personal letter of apology:

We apologize if the tone of the letter was impersonal or harsh, and will use your feedback to improve our communication processes in the future. Thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention. We wish you and your Lactivist program great future success.

The poorly communicated part of the letter to which he refers is, most likely, the part where they sling mud about Laycock promoting adult breastfeeding fetishism, giving the C&D an extra dose of nastiness. But, in that attorney’s defense, the seek-and-destroy proclivity toward pure meanness is probably why she was hired in the first place.

Also, according to a correspondence between the National Pork Board and Brian J. Moore & Associates, the firm that took up Laycock’s cause pro bono, the representative of US pork producers will take up a collection among its employees for a donation to the Milk Bank.

From that letter:

Because of the federal limitations on the expenditure of “Pork Checkoff” funds, National Pork Board is unable to make charitable contributions to any organization, including a non-profit organization such as Mother’s Milk Bank of Ohio.

Despite this restriction, however, and in light of the fact that the staff and leadership of National Pork Board have had their awareness raised concerning the needs of mothers who may be unable to breastfeed their children on their own, National Pork Board intends to conduct a voluntary fundraising campaign among its staff and executives to gather donations for Mother’s Milk Bank of Ohio. Although we cannot say for sure at this point how much money will be raised through this campaign, we anticipate – based on the support we have already seen among employees at National Pork Board – that this campaign will result in a generous contribution to Mother’s Milk Bank of Ohio.

The gestures did not go unrecognized or unappreciated by Laycock, who created a new shirt reading, "Breast: the original white milk."
She writes:

We all know how rare it is these days for a big corporation to admit that they’re wrong. Rarer yet, is the group of executives that are willing to dig into their own pockets to make a donation to right a wrong. (So much easier to dip into the corporate coffers and to write it off as a business expense.) If we’re going to lambaste the companies that behave poorly, we must celebrate the companies that do the right thing.

And so, after all is said and done, Jennifer Laycock and the National Pork Board are once again like two pigs in a poke.

Gosh I’m sorry about that. That’s all folks, I promise.


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Lactivist Gets Apology From Pork
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  • carol

    I have not read any other comments before posting this so please forgive me when I say, “This F’ing ROCKS!”

    And that is all.

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