Picture of mom breastfeeding at grad ceremony sparks debate

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Photo courtesy of Karlesha Thurman

LONG BEACH, Calif. (June 10, 2014) – A picture of a mother breastfeeding at her graduation ceremony has provoked a storm of online debate.

Long Beach State University student Karlesha Thurman, 25, got pregnant in her last year of college.

However, she stayed in school and completed her accounting degree.

At her graduation last month, she brought along her three-month-old daughter Aaliyah.

After the ceremony, Karlesha was proudly showing off her daughter when Aaliyah became hungry.

Still dressed in her cap and gown, Karlesha decided to feed her baby and a friend, who thought it cool, asked if they could take a picture.

A couple of days ago she posted the photo on the Facebook page, Black Women Do Breastfeed, to support a woman who wrote of getting dirty looks while nursing in public.

Though Karlesha has since deleted her photo, the Facebook group decided to share the photo as part of their efforts to try and normalize breast-feeding in public.

The picture drew a lot of support as well as a lot of criticism.

Some people thought it was inappropriate and that she should have covered up.

Others applauded Karlesha for normalizing breastfeeding.