RSS
Ricki Lake vs. the American Medical Association
Ricki Lake's recent documentary on home birth incited the AMA to state that a hospital is the safest place to give birth. The film simply questions whether every delivery should "be treated as a potentially catastrophic medical emergency,
 

What happened
Ricki Lake, former talk-show hostess and producer of the recent documentary The Business of Being Born, is exchanging blows with the American Medical Association over their views of childbirth. The AMA issued a statement saying "the safest setting for labor, deilvery, and the immediate post-partum period is in the hospital, or a birthing center." Lake, whose documentary features the home birth of her second son, said, "It feels like a personal attack. I can't imagine they are scared everyone will have a home birth because I did." (E! Online)

What the commentators said
The AMA isn't pleased that "Lake’s documentary has been receiving great publicity and acclaim from media outlets," said Michael d’Estries on Ecorazzi. The film simply explores birthing options and questions whether every delivery should "be treated as a potentially catastrophic medical emergency.” With its strict hospital-only resolution, the AMA is just "taking away choices from people—or scaring the hell out of them into going your way. Thanks, AMA!"

Oh, yes, how silly of the AMA to recommend a "fancy hospital" to avoid complications in childbirth, said Shawn Lindseth on Hecklerspray. "As if doctors and nurses help anyway." Who needs experienced medical care when you can stay at home, with full access to the cookies and left-over chicken?

The point isn't "whether or not there is an actual homebirth movement afoot," said Celebrity Baby Blog. The point is that the AMA "fears there is." It's blaming Ricki Lake for "improperly promoting" homebirth, but Lake said it herself: "Home birth was around long before hospitals were taking over—and I just think women need to know so that they can make the best choice."

 

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week