Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
Co-sleeping is risky. Co-sleeping is dangerous. Co-sleeping is killing babies in Milwaukee, nine this year.
That’s the deadly reality that apparently is lost on some folks.
The city of Milwaukee Health Department last week embarked upon a public awareness campaign about the perils of co-sleeping that included the following ads:
There have been previous TV and newspaper stories, and now, these jolting visuals. It’s sad that campaigns about what should be simple common sense are even necessary. However, in order to have an effect, there must be impact. In my view, these pictures succeed.
As you might expect, not everyone is pleased. The Stir is, I’ll grant you, an interesting website even though its writers all seem to be ultra-lefty feminists. One of them makes the ridiculous assertion that Milwaukee’s effort is over the line.
All aghast, Christie Haskell writes, “…imagine my shock and fury when I saw Milwaukee's new anti-co-sleeping poster that says that co-sleeping is incredibly negligent and deadly. The suggestion (from the ads) is not only that co-sleeping is dangerous, but that parents who co-sleep must be ignorant of all safety precautions of any kind.”
Sorry to break the news to you, Christie, and in your marshmallow world this might be tough to swallow, but that’s exactly what’s going on. Yes, if you co-sleep, and on top of it just happened to be drugged up out of your mind, then yes, you are ignorant and a few other negative adjectives as well.
There's more from Haskell.
"I find myself pissed at a campaign that tells you how to safely CRIB sleep but demonizes co-sleeping, rather than teaching how to safely do that too. Before anyone insists this campaign is brilliant, by the way, consider if it were a bottle of formula labeled as poison.”
Wow. Now there's some rational thinking.
I see nothing wrong with Milwaukee’s Safe Sleep Guidelines or the campaign pictures. Because the typical, boring, clinical, public service announcement approach isn’t working.
Instead of worrying about images that aren’t in any way offensive or insulting, let’s be more concerned about dead babies. And if these ads happen to shame some moms because they’re just too plain stupid to grasp the obvious, tough.