beat (one's) breast

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beat (one's) breast

To publicly express emotions or views that one does not actually feel or support. During election season, all the candidates beat their breasts about how much they love our communities—and then they get into office and slash community initiatives.
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beat your breast

or

beat your chest

COMMON If someone beats their breast or beats their chest, they publicly show regret or anger about something that has happened. At this month's meeting of the party's Central Committee, the party leader beat his breast with ritual self-criticism. Why don't you both stop beating your chests and do something productive? Note: You can describe the action of doing this as breast-beating or chest-beating. His breast-beating on behalf of the working classes always seemed false to me. Note: You usually use these expressions to suggest that the person is not being sincere but is trying to draw attention to himself or herself.
See also: beat, breast

beat your breast

make a great show of sorrow or regret.
See also: beat, breast
References in periodicals archive ?
Camilla and the Sing to Beat Breast Cancer Choir are joined by vocal trio Blake.
At this year's "Westside Challenge to Beat Breast Cancer" on October 21, 2006, nearly one hundred tennis enthusiasts will join Nisenholtz on the courts of the UCLA Los Angeles Tennis Center from 11:00 a.
A petrochemicals and recruitment entrepreneur, he sold o his PS16m mansion and all his belongings and then used the proceeds to set up the charity after his wife Shirley beat breast cancer in 2009.
Former X Factor judge Sharon revealed she had had a double mastectomy to beat breast cancer two years ago.
The Blues' defensive rock was the guest of honour at an exclusive Ladies Lunch at the Hilton Liverpool in aid of two local charities, The Lily Centre and Clatterbridge Hospital, which treated and helped two female members of staff to beat breast cancer in recent years.
Aimed at generating awareness, the decor and messages reminded shoppers of the importance of regular check-ups for early detection to help beat breast cancer.
John, from Barry, was inspired to take part in the race after his wife beat breast cancer at Christmas.
So dig out your pinkest tie, T-shirt or tutu, and donate pounds 2 to help Breast Cancer Campaign beat breast cancer.
Running from September 10-12, the event is perfect for anyone looking for a new physical challenge as participants attempt to scale the UK's three highest mountains in just 24 hours to help the charity continue to beat breast cancer.
THE founder member of an animal sanctuary say the creatures she cares for helped her beat breast cancer for the second time.
The star of panto Sleeping Beauty took time out from his busy schedule of shows at the Hippodrome to meet scientists at Birmingham University, who are working to beat breast cancer.
This year the Breast Cancer Campaign is daring everyone in the UK to wear an item of pink on October 31 and give pounds 2 each to the charity to help it beat breast cancer.
How interesting and pleasing to read the article about a mum who beat breast cancer in just six weeks praising the National Health Service.
BATTLING Kylie is likely be given a new wonder drug to help her beat breast cancer.
It celebrates the fact that many women beat breast cancer," she explains.