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Should public nudity be legal?

The AANR (American Association for Nude Recreation) has the view that public nudity should be legal as long as the person is not doing anything with the intent of sexually arousing either themselves or anyone else.

The most stated reason by members is to get over "body shame", because doing so helps boost self esteem and confidence. There have been studies showing that children raised in nudist family have higher self esteem and confidence and are just generally more comfortable with who they are as a person.

On the other side there are those persons who seek out nude beaches and nudist events who have seual agendas. AANR nudist clubs don't tolerate such persons, and forcibly remove them shoudl they show up. I refer to such persons as "swingers" because they seem to fit the swinger lifestyle more than they do the nudist lifestyule

However, as a point of freedom. A freedom of expression, which does tno do harm to anyone, shoudl public nudity be legal? As atheists are nto burdened with religious mores , I was just wondering what the people here think?

I am a natuirst (nudist) and I have ridden the Portland (OR) World Naked Bike Ride, which has over 10,000 participants each year, and I have gone on nude hikes, visited clothing optional beaches

So, what are your thoughts?

By snytiger6
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54 comments
0

Not before someone who is not an adult. Nudity before children should not be allowed.

sourceofdesire Level 3 Nov 18, 2017
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When it's really warm, I like to shed my clothing, and interestingly have become more comfortable with nudism as I age. So I say go for it, with all the practical suggestions people have made here, e.g. using a towel.

North America was founded (if I have my history correct...) by people fleeing religious persecution, therefore explaining the puritanical mindset that kicked off this continent's culture. We still see its effects to this day. The objectifying of women is IMHO the result of forbidding the exposure of the human body. Make something illegal and forbidden, it makes it all the more naughty.

Hominid Level 4 Nov 18, 2017
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On,y if you look good nekkid. ????

Unicorn1824 Level 3 Nov 18, 2017
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1

American's in general are hypocritical prudes and the rise of christian fundamentalism recently (christian fundamentalists overwhelmingly support Trump) would seem to hinder the chance of any liberalization in this regard.

stdojo Level 2 Nov 16, 2017
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I am thinking (or a least hoping) that Trump will push too hard and too far and there will be a societal push back in the other direction.
1

Sure why not?

bwright Level 4 Nov 15, 2017
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2

Can we make a list of people we DON'T want to see naked?

Trump. Karl Rove. Bill Clinton. O'Bannon. The list will grow.

I know, I'm on the list, too.

Paul4747 Level 4 Nov 15, 2017
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I think nudity allows you to see people for who they really are. Most persons who hae something to hide will hide it, in part, by the way they dress.

My point being that yeah, there may be some unattractive persons out there, but I'll take seeing those persons in exchange for seeing people more for who they are rather than who they pretend to be. Clothign just helps with their pretenses.
If you think about the list of people you don't wan tot see naked, if you did see those persons naked, then you would not think of them in the same ways. They would not seem as powerful or influential, but more like regular people. I would be a great equalizer of power.
1

I don't think it should be penalized but if it was permitted in certain areas, I wouldn't have a problem with that. The element of surprise is what concerns me. For example, I would hate to walk around my neighborhood and see my Uncle Frank watering his lawn in the buff. That would make for an awkward family picnic down the road once Uncle Frank shows up.

tiger78 Level 4 Nov 15, 2017
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My opinion is that public nudity should be legal. I lived in areas where there was a much greater degree of public nudity. I believe genetalia were often covered for protective reasons as these were more sensitive areas (injury wise - men & women) and for sanitary reasons. what was interesting was that nakedness was much more of an issue for those who were clothed than naked.

Whilst in Germany a friend and I realised we were in a naked sports complex when guys were wandering around starkers and we were in swimming trunks. The laughing Germans caused my friend to state that he felt embarrassed to be clothed so we went back to the lockers and got nudie. It was a "unisex" complex and all sexes used the same changing rooms and all facilities. There was no sexual innuendo or lewd behaviour. It was actually a pleasant experience to be there.

In the UK, the laws are not straight forward. I have included a link to a Wikipedia entry about a (in)famous naked rambler https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Gough

Treasurehunter Level 4 Nov 14, 2017
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For us truly pale people it would require a coat of SPF not invented as yet. I'd rather wear clothing. That being said one of the first Nudist Camps in America was just a few miles from my doorstep growing up. And hey Big Bird is a nudist! So no - no problems with nudism - but I think sticking to clubs/beaches places it's accepted is just fine.

RavenCT Level 4 Nov 13, 2017
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While visiting a friend in Palms Springs, where the high temperatures were 110-120F, I was introduced to Nutrogena sun screen (I am talking about he creme that somes in a tube, nto hte spray). I found with just one application, I could go in and out of the water all day without burning or having to reapply it. It is expensive, but well worth it. I have never burned while wearing it, no matter how much time I spent in the sun. Abotu a minute after you put it on it is dry to the touch, so you don't' get on clothes if you put clothes on over it. Anyway, if you are fair skinned, it shoudl allow you to be in the sun for much longer. You will still fell warm, but definitely won't be as apt to burn.
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I have sunbathed naked at a beach in Sydney Australia. I find nothing wrong with that at all. A good tan makes one feel very healthy although the would be experts seem to find it may be risky. I live in Australia and have always sunbathed and with olive skin I am able to get a very dark tan.

Sir-Roger Level 3 Nov 12, 2017
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Yes, how much time one spends in the sun should, at least in part, be determined by whether or not a person can tolerate a lot of sun. My skin is darker than it is for my other 5 siblings. Two of my fourth great grand parents were Native American, an dI seem to have iherited an ability to tan really well from that. Ironically, this was on was father's side of hte family, but my fatherhimself woudl vurn if he was in teh sun for more thna 15 minutes.

Even with my tanning abilities, I still work into sun exposure each year gradually. A person has to gradually build up sun tolerance each summer. It is tempting when the first nice weather hits to spend all day in the sun, but if you do you are likely to burn. I usually start out using sun screen, if early in the season. By the end of the season I cna spend several hours with no sunscreen wihtotu a problem.

I found the best sunscreen is the Nutrogena creme that comes in tubes (not the sprays). It is pretty expensive, but it is worth not getting skin damage or burning.
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I think it's pretty obvious that there would need to be exceptions. For example; at nudist clubs you are expected to bring your own towel to sit on. I wouldn't want to share a bus seat with god knows how many other people. And restaurants...I don't care if you had a shower an hour ago. Keep a wrapper on the smelly bits

JustKip Level 4 Nov 11, 2017
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Yeah, after reading athe responses here, I think I might need to expand my definition of the purpose of clothing from just warmth and protection and perhaps add for public sanitation. There will always be somebody who disregards established norms(in naturist/nudist culture) of placing a towel down before siting. So yeah, persons using public transit if they want a seat, should have to wear clothing out of consideration for others.

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Absolutely! However, reality sets in and we'll probably never see it in the next 5-10 years or longer. As for many of the comments below concerning the public, if it were to happen, within a year most of the public will not care either way. It is the same for first timers at nudist resorts (I've been to at least 6-8). The first day or two they are nervous and sometimes red-faced but eventually they relax and it means nothing to them. I have hiked the Chugach Mountains in Alaska, above Anchorage, in the summer, nude, and have come across other hikers who either had no reaction, just a simple hello, and others who were surprised to find out it wasn't illegal and stripped down. It's all a state of mind and religion has inculcated the masses with the idea of nudity is a sin. It'll take time but eventually, it will happen but not soon enough for me.

sangfroid Level 2 Nov 10, 2017
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I've been to a several of nude beaches and nudist resorts and it seems for most people it takes perhaps one to two hours at most to get used to the nudity for most people.

I talked to one grandmother who said she used to cover up when not in the pool, but finally she said it just got to be too much trouble. It took her several visits to get to that point, but in the end she decided that if the people around her didn't care, then why should she. She now serves on the board for that nudist club. Her daughter and grand kids love to go visit her there. I run into them almost every time I have been to that club.

It is true that if nudity isn't unusual, then it is no big deal and people generally won't really pay attention to it. I think it would be great to have designated clothing optional areas in parks liek they do in many European cities.

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No, it should not be. Just because you want to be naked all the time (which I'm not against), there are many out there who would be uncomfortable about seeing it and others who would be outright hateful and hurtful!
It's for your own safety that so far, full public nudity is still illegal.
There is however, at least one State that I know of, New York, which allows women to appear topless in public.

sweetnnekked Level 2 Nov 10, 2017
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The states of Vermont and Oregon have pretty nude friendly laws. In Oregon, you can legally be nude anywhere if you are protesting. The oregon State Supreme Court ruled that nudity is protected under the State's constitution. The wording of the decision is clear about protests, but vague about other situations.
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Legalising public nudity would not necessarily result in there being large numbers of naked people about. Physical comfort, protection (however limited) from pervs and other matters reflected in other posts would result in most people keeping their clothes on, most of the time. Perhaps it matters more that making it legal stops it from being 'illegal', which may sound daft but isn't. The big issue for me is the concept that the body/particular parts of the body 'must be covered' (by law) and that failure to do so results in an offence against 'public decency'. Thus the law enshrines the idea that merely having a part of one's anatomy visible is indecent, and that makes no sense to me, morally, ethically or otherwise.
For public nudity to become significant we would have to tackle the huge issues that exist within the status quo -- the dubious role of the fashion, cosmetic and other industries, the utilisation of the body - particularly the female body - as a tool for selling product, including where the primary action is to seek to make people uncomfortable with their bodies in order that they will buy something they do not need. Recently, a rather lovely model was savaged online because she posed with her arms and legs unshaved, a Middle Eastern woman shamed and threatened because she was photographed in denim shorts, I think it was, and a tee shirt. We have not yet begun to treat the mindset that too easily and often asserts 'she was asking for it', and we need to.

RichardRaiment Level 4 Nov 10, 2017
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I am good with people using dedicated space for this practice. There are just too many ways people could abuse this that contemplating it makes me uneasy.

btroje Level 4 Nov 8, 2017
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I agree that there probably shoudl be designated places for the practice, but on the other hand, I think people shoudl also be allowed to be nude outside of designated places if they so choose. If they choose to rake on the risks of such actions that is their choice. However, I think few would choose to do so, just as few persons choose to park a brand new car in South Central Los Angeles (a crime ridden area). People so mostly use common sense to reduce their risks.

Anyway, changes in public nudity laws would have to be gradual, to alloow for cultural adaptation. No responsible legislators would go from a total ban on nudity to allowing nudity everywhere over night. That would likely be chaotic.

It would be more like in Europe, where they would designate sections of public parks where nude sunbathing is legal, and sections of beaches stc...
3

Yes, its natural. It's more common in the rest of the world. We are to puritanical. Hiding it leads to objectification.

ChrisMazuros Level 2 Nov 7, 2017
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I'm all about freedom but I see people all over the place that I do not want to see naked. But that doesn't mean I'm going to start body shaming anyone, I just don't want to see them naked. If public nudity was legal then that would be forcing people to look at nakedness that they don't want to see. I think that is wrong. Just like we want religious people to keep there religion out of the way and don't force it on people I believe the same goes for nudity. People shouldn't be forced to view nakedness and they shouldn't be forced to hear preaching.

Lucas20520 Level 4 Nov 5, 2017
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Just at we are all born atheists, so we are all born nudists. Nudity should be legal and without penalty. I agree with the statement above that if a person is using it for sexual arousal it should be completely normalized. I think it would take some time for the general public to accept nudity as acceptable, but once it is accepted things would be fine. We are all naked under our clothes and the sooner we just accept the human body as acceptable, the sooner it would be normalized. I think that clothing creates a certain type of its own eroticism that wouldn't exist if nudism was acceptable. I remember the excitement of first discovering someone's body under her clothes led to the notion that if I was under her clothing that moving into sexual behavior was part of the package. If nudity was accepted then the boundaries about sexuality could be more normalized so that nudity did not mean automatically that sex was automatically Ok. If we were all naked the curiosity factor would be taken away and sexuality would be looked at in a healthier light, too.

JabberingJohn Level 3 Nov 5, 2017
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Umm... the statement read as long as they are NOT trying toi sexually arouse either themselves or anyone else.... I suspect you may have accidentally made a misquite which totally changes the meaning of what I said. LOL... luckily that site managers added a feature that allows you to edit posts a couple weeks ago.

One of my favorite T-Shirts reads "If we were meant to be naked, we'd be born that way." It's a lot of fun to see someone read it and see their expression in that split second where their brain is trying to make sense of it.

I do agree that because most people only are nude in the contexts of either sex or bathing, those are the only things that they associate nudity with, or rather the only things that come to their minds. I have a long list of other activities I have done while nude, and seldom ever think of sex (out of a sexual context) when I see another nude person.

Once thing about everyone beign naked, is that there are no cues a to a person's status, so everyone generally treats everyone else the same. If "clothes make the man", than a lack of clothes makes everyone equal.
4

Apparently the ancient greeks and other concurrent societies were quite openly naked in public especially during sporting and similar public events, much to the horror of the jewish peoples of the time. And it seems that the Abrahamic religions, Jewish, Moslem, and Christian have put their stamp on public morals ever since. It should be completely legal, and completely up to the individual as to when and where they exercise their right to nudity. There is a huge difference between legal, and compulsory.

Squirrellglider Level 7 Nov 1, 2017
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It should be illegal, but only in America. It is clear Americans hold such an adolescent mindset and are still too close to their puritanical roots to deal with things like naked people. The top five things that would happen the day after nudity was legalized in the U.S.A.: 1) half the people would file sexual harassment claims and lawyer-up. 2)There would be a sudden resurgence in nineteenth century style "fainting couches". 3) Traumatized Evangelicals would form victim support groups all over the country. 4) Pubic sculpting boutiques on every corner. 5) Those wipe dispensers you find by the carts at the front of the grocery store would be hung at the end of each pew. And a special bonus result: There would be a secret service agent holding the first place in line for his boss at the Genital Enhancement Prosthetic shop.

greenchilehound Level 1 Nov 1, 2017
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I have both encountered naked people in public and have sometimes been a naked person in public and contrary to your ideas of what would happen, about the only reaction was some people took out their camera phones to take photos. The vast majority of people didn't have any reaction at all. There was once or twice, but not in the same day, a rabid right wing religious fanatic who would shout at us, but that was the only rare negative reaction.

Before, anyone gets ideas about going naked after reading the above though, you shoudl familiarize yourself with local nudity laws and be familiar with what you can and cannot do legally. I was living in Oregon which has very nude friendly laws.

In regards to item #5 on the list above, in nudist culture it is considered proper nudist etiquette and common in nudist culture to carry a towel or something else with you to sit on, for sanitary reasons, and if possible to shower or thoroughly clean yourself after dedicating.
Wow! You got me laughing my ass off greenchilehound. That was hilarious.
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It is a shame that the social culture in the USA makes having a human body something that we are all supposed to be ashamed of.

RedRiverRogue Level 3 Nov 1, 2017
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Yes.
With perhaps designated 'clothing required' zones, where nudity is not allowed. For those who want to relax in a totally clothed environment.
I doubt it would make much difference, for the most part. Any time you are wearing a jacket, you are clothing for warmth, (or pockets) and you'd still do that.

Allan Level 4 Oct 30, 2017
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In a perfect world, or even a more tolerant one. Not merely religious but current social standards come into play (though those are largely affected by religion).

In most American public situations, men would be seen as perverts or predators, women as vain or "asking for it".

I'm a naturist at heart and visited several naturist resorts throughout Florida when I was "snowbirding" there. The sense of freedom and community was wonderful!

DangerDave Level 5 Oct 29, 2017
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Bit difficult whilst shopping ... But otherwise ,who cares ?

MarcIveson Level 4 Oct 28, 2017
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nope, social contract

WillKincaid Level 4 Oct 27, 2017
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The thing about contracts,even social cottracts, is that they can be modified, changed or even broken.
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