Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Monthly Newds Part Four 3/31/09

I missed a lot of newds this past month, so here are a bunch of quick links to fill in the gaps...

Vote for Genitals

The Today Show on NBC is giving viewers a chance to vote on whether or not to remove the censor tape from nude paintings done by on-air anchors for the "Today Takes On" series. The censorship of the artworks was not made by the NBC legal department, but rather by producer Don Nash who said that the exposed genitalia made him "uncomfortable". Apparently many viewers thought that the censor tape was silly, and on Friday the private parts will likely be revealed to the viewing public.

It's Not Clothing Optional at Germany's First Naked Hotel

If you want to stay at a new hotel in Freudenstadt, located in Germany's Black Forest, you will be required to leave your clothes at the entrance and be naked at all times on the premises.

Home Nudist Photo of the Day 3/31/09

"My name's Peter Stokes, I live in Cheltenham in the UK where I'm an electrician by trade. I'm married (as I said, to a non-nudist) got three grown-up children, first grandchild on the way. I like long country hikes and motorcycling. Got a nudist website at http://www.pjcomputing.flyer.co.uk/naked/ which is actually long overdue for being updated which I keep meaning to get around to ..."

Thank you for submitting your photo! For details on how you can send us your home nudist photo, please click here.

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/31/09

Monday, March 30, 2009

US Judge Sides With Teens in Sexting Case

A U. S. judge issued a temporary restraining order against a Pennsylvania prosecutor who threatened to bring child pornography charges against three teen girls caught with nude or semi-nude photos of themselves on their cell phones. It was ruled that such action would violate freedom of speech and parental rights. Make no mistake, this is a landmark case and likely to stand as precedent for any other such cases in the future.
Witold Walczack, legal director of the ACLU of Pennsylvania, welcomed the legal decision. "This country needs to have a discussion about whether prosecuting minors as child pornographers for merely being impulsive and naive is the appropriate way to address the serious consequences that can result from sexting," he said.
The report also goes on to say that as many as 39 percent of teens have sent or posted sexually suggestive messages, and 20 percent have posted nude or semi-nude photos of themselves.

UPDATE: A CBS news story clarifies the judge's action as being a temporary restraining order, and that his isn't ruling yet on the merits of the lawsuit. In addition, prosecutor George Skumanick said he would consider an appeal. There is also some concern about setting a precedent where people who commit crimes seek refuge in federal court to prevent state arrest.
The girls "make a reasonable argument that the images presented to the court do not appear to qualify in any way as depictions of prohibited sexual acts. Even if they were such depictions, the plaintiffs' argument that (they) were not involved in disseminating the images is also a reasonable one," (Judge) Munley wrote...The judge said he "offers no final conclusion on the merits of plaintiffs' position" and scheduled a hearing on the case for June 2.

Send Me Your Home Nudist Photos

I know that there are so many of you out there who are home nudists, she here's a photo of me just hanging around nude.

I really admire all the people who freely let themselves be photographed nude, such as the hard-working people at The Naturist Action Committee, Clothes-Free International, and Tom Mulhall and his wife Mary Clare at the Terra Cotta Inn.

But all you home nudists out there don't really get a chance to share your skin in all its glory with the rest of the world.

So here's your opportunity. Send me a photo of yourself nude at home and I'll post it here.

There are some rules, so PLEASE READ CAREFULLY. You must submit TWO photos which are the same, except ONE must contain you holding up a piece of paper with the words DIARY OF A NUDIST clearly visible. I will use the photo without the words. All subjects in the photos must be 18 years of age or older and must state this through email. You must also state that you own all rights to the photo and are granting me permission for one-time use on this blog. No Photoshopping. No blurring of faces or body parts. Photos must be sharp and clear. Full frontal is preferred but we will accept side and rear shots. No erections or spread leg photos. No sexual activity of any kind. Couples with their arms around each other is fine, as is a simple kiss. Images should be at least 1024 pixels in size. And I ultimately reserve the right to reject any photo that I judge to be inappropriate or sketchy in any way.

I vow that the photos will only be used by me on this blog and nowhere else. Naturally, people are prone to stealing images and I have no control over that, but it won't be me spreading them around.

Your name is not required, but you can submit your name if you want, as well as some brief comments, such as where you are from, if you are a member of TNS or AANR, what clubs you frequent, etc.

This is not a contest, but consider yourself a winner if you have the guts to be nude on camera.

Photos should be sent to nudiarist@gmail.com.

Now get out your cameras and stop hiding your home nudism!

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/30/09

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Send Me Your Home Nudist Photos

I know that there are so many of you out there who are home nudists, she here's a photo of me just hanging around nude.

I really admire all the people who freely let themselves be photographed nude, such as the hard-working people at The Naturist Action Committee, Clothes-Free International, and Tom Mulhall and his wife Mary Clare at the Terra Cotta Inn.

But all you home nudists out there don't really get a chance to share your skin in all its glory with the rest of the world.

So here's your opportunity. Send me a photo of yourself nude at home and I'll post it here.

There are some rules, so PLEASE READ CAREFULLY. You must submit TWO photos which are the same, except ONE must contain you holding up a piece of paper with the words DIARY OF A NUDIST clearly visible. I will use the photo without the words. All subjects in the photos must be 18 years of age or older and must state this through email. You must also state that you own all rights to the photo and are granting me permission for one-time use on this blog. No Photoshopping. No blurring of faces or body parts. Photos must be sharp and clear. Full frontal is preferred but we will accept side and rear shots. No erections or spread leg photos. No sexual activity of any kind. Couples with their arms around each other is fine, as is a simple kiss. Images should be at least 1024 pixels in size. And I ultimately reserve the right to reject any photo that I judge to be inappropriate or sketchy in any way.

I vow that the photos will only be used by me on this blog and nowhere else. Naturally, people are prone to stealing images and I have no control over that, but it won't be me spreading them around.

Your name is not required, but you can submit your name if you want, as well as some brief comments, such as where you are from, if you are a member of TNS or AANR, what clubs you frequent, etc.

This is not a contest, but consider yourself a winner if you have the guts to be nude on camera.

Photos should be sent to nudiarist@gmail.com.

Now get out your cameras and stop hiding your home nudism!

NAC ACTION ALERT - Vermont Legislation 3/27/09

Copyright 2009 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: March 27, 2009
SUBJECT: Vermont Legislation
TO: All Naturists

Dear Naturist,

This is an Action Alert from the Naturist Action Committee regarding a proposed new law currently under committee review in the Vermont legislature.

At the request of a former constituent, Vermont State Representative John Rodgers (D-Glover) has introduced a bill entitled "Prohibiting Public Nudity on Public Lands." The bill was introduced in the House of Representatives on February 4, and it has been designated "H.154." It has been referred to the House Committee on General, Housing and Military Affairs, where it remains at this time.

NAC has been following this legislation closely since its introduction, and NAC is working with lawmakers and local grassroots activists to monitor it and assure that it does not become law.

The Naturist Action Committee is asking you to take action. NAC requests that you send a letter, fax or email to each member of the House Committee on General, Housing and Military Affairs, expressing your opposition to this bill.

NAC encourages all naturists, regardless of your state of residence, to make your voices heard in this important situation. Of course, the participation of Vermonters and New Englanders is vital. You may write or call. If you are unable to contact all members of the committee, at least make sure that you contact the Committee's Chair, Representative Helen Head.

Vermont's economy relies heavily on tourism, and its lawmakers understand the importance of out-of-state visitors who come to enjoy the state's lakes, rivers and streams. Especially if you live outside of Vermont, it is imperative that you mention your preference for visiting Vermont's clothing-optional swimming areas.

Send a letter, a fax or an e-mail, or make a phone call to members of the Vermont House Committee on General, Housing and Military Affairs. Committee members share the same street address, phone number and fax number at their state capital offices in Montpelier. Alternatively, you may choose to contact the lawmaker's district office.

Rep.(Representative's Name)
State House
115 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05633
TEL (802) 828-2247
FAX (802) 828-2424

Rep. Helen Head, Chair
EMAIL hhead@leg.state.vt.us

65 East Terr.
South Burlington, VT 05403
(802) 862-2267

Rep. Joseph Baker, Vice Chair
EMAIL jbaker@leg.state.vt.us

1479 Whipple Hollow Road
West Rutland, VT 05777
(802) 438-9819

Rep. John Moran, Ranking Member
EMAIL jmoran@leg.state.vt.us

58 Hi-Hopes Rd.,
Wardsboro, VT 05355
(802) 896-9408

Rep. Kesha K. Ram, Clerk
EMAIL kram@leg.state.vt.us

31 N. Prospect St.
Burlington, VT 05401
(802) 881-4433

Rep. William F. Johnson
EMAIL -none-

3603 Rte. 102
Canaan, VT 05903
(802) 277-8329

Rep. Brian K. Savage
EMAIL bsavage@leg.state.vt.us

P.O. Box 232
Swanton, VT 05488
(802) 782-9314
(802) 868-3566

Rep. Robert South
EMAIL rsouth@leg.state.vt.us

P.O. Box 206
St. Johnsbury Ctr., VT 05863-0206
(802) 748-0873
(802) 748-5111

Rep. Tom Stevens
EMAIL tstevens@leg.state.vt.us

12 Winooski St.
Waterbury, VT 05676
(802) 244-4164

NAC encourages you to send copies of your faxes and paper mail to:
NAC, P.O. Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903. Send copies of your e-mails to: vermont@naturistaction.org .

When you write or call:

a) Be polite. You have a right to be outraged at the proposed law, but you will achieve nothing positive by name-calling or rudeness.

b) Be known. Give your name and address. If you are a Vermont resident or a frequent visitor to Vermont, point that out.

c) Be focused. Keep your call or your correspondence brief and on target.

d) Be clear. Say that you OPPOSE H.154.

e) Be prepared. If you call, The lawmaker may not be available, and you may find yourself able to speak only to a legislative aide. That's okay. The aide is trained to take your comment and relay it to the legislator.

Additional talking / writing points:
a) Vermont is known for valuing the personal freedom of its residents and visitors. House Bill 154 would restrict the personal liberty of every individual and prohibit the Vermont tradition of skinny-dipping and sunbathing, regardless of traditional and benign circumstances.

b) A public opinion poll (the 2006 NEF/Roper Poll, commissioned by the Naturist Education Foundation and conducted by the independent Roper polling organization) shows that 25% of Americans have skinny-dipped in mixed company.

c) In that same poll, an impressive 74 percent of Americans believe that people who enjoy nude sunbathing should be able to do so without interference as long as they do so at a beach that is accepted for that purpose.


Additional information and links are available, along with this NAC Action Alert on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee.


Select "Alerts" and find this NAC Action Alert under Current Alerts.


The Naturist Action Committee is a volunteer nonprofit organization that exists to advance and protect the rights of naturists throughout North America. Identifying and fighting bad local lawmaking is necessary, but it's expensive. To do its job, NAC relies entirely on the voluntary generosity of supporters like you. To donate to NAC, use the address below:

PO Box 132
Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard, Visa or Discover Card. Or use your credit card to make a convenient online donation: http://www.naturistaction.org/donate/

Thank you for choosing to make a difference.


Virginia Schnee
Board Member
Naturist Action Committee

Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton - execdir@naturistaction.org
Board Member Virginia Schnee - virginia@schnee.com
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick - naturist@sunclad.com

Perpetuating Myths

It's frustrating to nudists and naturists when society perpetuates myths about the lifestyle.

Columnist Barry Lewis manages to invoke just about all of them.
International Nudist, a Web site "dedicated to nudists and naturists," says you haven't lived until you've hiked naked.

Looking down at my thumb and considering the possible hatchet job I could accidentally perform on other body parts, I'm not sure I'd still be alive if I hiked in the nude. At the very least, I'm sure I would be scarred for life, as would any of the hikers I'd pass on my journey.
The implication is that freehikers are stupid because they hike nude through thick brush and uncleared trails, and that the sight of a nude human body is a ghastly experience.

My wife and I freehiked the beautiful 5 miles of trails through the woods and fields of beautiful Cedar Trails in southern Ohio. No scratches, no discomfort, no sweaty clothes clinging to the skin, no bug bites, and not a care in the world.

Personal aside to Barry: Psst! Nobody gives a damn about your own body phobias. You might not like your belly, your legs, your chest, whatever, but the whole point of being nude is coming to terms with your own body. People are way too obsessed with their own body image, this is why teens are bulimic, plastic surgery is a booming business, and people live in abject fear about getting into their swimsuits every year. This is no way to go through life, Barry. Throw off the clothes for a day at a nudist venue and only then will you begin to understand.

Barry then tries to soften his stance by bringing up his own streaking experience 30 year ago.
It was spring. It was a fad. We were young. Stupid. And back then, I ran a lot faster. Especially without clothes.

So I'm not a complete prude.

Just a realistic one.

Nude sun bathing.

Nude swimming.

Nude volleyball — I get it. Although I'd be worried about someone spiking the ball.
Again, perpetuating the myth that nudity is "stupid". Yes, it can be stupid because there are laws against "indecent exposure", laws which are man-made and stem from a Puritanical background. And what exactly is a "realistic prude"? Is that like being "somewhat pregnant"?

And no matter what Barry says, he doesn't really "get it" when it comes to nude recreation. He might accept it, he might tolerate it, but until he takes the plunge himself, he cannot truly understand. Running around nude and drunk on a college campus 30 years ago might be a commendable resume item, but it does not qualify him as a nudist.
Hike nude in the woods, and there's a good chance you'll embarrass someone other than Mother Nature. Like some mother walking with her 6-year-old kid who now has to explain why a funny-looking grizzly bear had on a hat, boots and said, "Hi!" to them.
This is the mother of all myths: how do we explain to the children?

From the 205 Arguments and Observations in Support of Naturism,
15. Children are not born with any shame about nudity. They learn to be ashamed of their own nudity.
Barry needs to read all 205 arguments which show that nudism is a healthy practice for families, fostering better self-image and healthier sexual attitudes. Children are natural nudists, they throw off their clothes with pure abandon, and they could care less about the body phobias developed by adults.

Finally, Barry bares his true feelings.
I think there reaches a time when we have to admit that clothes — any clothes — can make the man a better-looking man. Same for the woman.

For even if you can survive the ticks and the bites and burns, you can't escape reality, age and gravity.
The "realistic" prude proves that he has an aversion to the human body, especially his own, when he professes that "any clothes" are an improvement over one's given skin. Again, read the 205 arguments, which point out very clearly that clothing only serves to accentuate body flaws, especially swimsuits, and that most people actually look better in the nude. Older people often look younger once all their skin is exposed. It really is true.

Ultimately, if what Barry says is true, that "you can't escape reality, age and gravity", then why stop fighting the unwinnable fight? Get naked, Barry, and get in touch with your true self.

Same advice for Kelly Kazek, who opens her column about nakations by stating, "If it weren’t for the extra pound or 30 I’m carrying around, I might just consider taking a nakation this year."

Kelly, nobody cares about your extra 30 pounds! Embrace your body, surround yourself with other nude people who all have normal human bodies just like yours. People are brainwashed with airbrushed images in magazines, and perfectly made-up faces in the movies and on TV, so when normal people look in the mirror, they are seeing something far different that what is portrayed in the media. Hell, even supermodels need makeup and airbrushing! Nobody can compete with that sort of artificial ideal.

Kelly then goes on to make snide comments about various nakation venues, showing her own immaturity.

Nudism is no joke, folks. In fact, it could be a big factor in combating pornography, developing healthier attitudes, building stronger bodies, fighting teen pregnancy (as argued by British Naturism), and generally relieving stress and strain from the pressures of modern society.

Setting aside all the myths, and getting past all the giggles, nudism and naturism are seriously good things for society, and more needs to be done to counterract the immature columnists who don't know Jack.

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/29/09

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Monthly Newds Part Three 3/28/09

More catching up...
  • More and more columnists are making the argument that sexting teens are NOT sex offenders and should not be punished for taking nude photos of themselves. Read here, here, and here.
  • British Naturism has offered its advice on how to reduce the number of teenage pregnancies in Scotland.
    In a submission to the Scottish Government, British Naturism said a less prudish attitude to the naked body would help take away the mystique that it says contributes to high pregnancy levels in teenagers.

    A less "censorious" attitude to the body would also give youngsters a better understanding of their own bodies and prevent eating disorders, it said.
  • Some women disagree with language in the new North Dakota breastfeeding bill which requires a nursing mother to act "in a discreet and modest manner" in public.
  • 100 women disrobed in Paraguay to protest nuclear weapons.
  • This article does its best to sensationalize the teen sexting phenomenon, using the following words to create hysteria: porn star, provocatively, alarming, pornography, horrify, disturbing, shamelessly, hard-core, damaging, long-term effects, explicit, obscene, illegal, horrifying, breaking the law, consequences, humiliation, prosecution, police, not for the faint-hearted, totally inappropriate, topless, naked, nudity, sex acts, murders, at risk, vulnerable, horror, stomach-turning, sexual violence, outlawed, etc. The entire article is nothing by hyperbole, dwelling entirely on all the perceived dangers and never making any attempt to understand what is really happening.
  • Some people collect stamps, others collect nude photos of celebrities.
    “A friend of mine spent nearly thirty years collecting a complete set of nude photos of the original Magnificent Seven, for instance. Charles Bronson was the most difficult to obtain,” says Buffage. “Whilst there were known to be a couple of shots of his bare arse snapped by a tourist when he mooned at Richard Attenborough during The Great Escape, for many years it was believed that no full-frontal pictures of Bronson existed. Eventually my mate heard of an illicit picture taken by a technician during the shooting of The Dirty Dozen. He ended up paying £3,000 for the picture and the negatives - a real bargain!”
  • A critic feels that Nancy Feliciano spends "way too much time nekkid" in the film "Into the Woods".
  • The New York Times covered the story about nude hiking in Switzerland.
    Mr. Hepenstrick, 54, is an architect who loves to hike in the altogether. In winter, he said, he has hiked for hours in temperatures well below freezing, though he does concede the need for a hat and gloves. He has hiked in the nude for about 30 years, he said, and has crisscrossed the hills and mountains around Appenzell, as well as in France, Germany, Italy and even the Appalachians.

    His companion, a schoolteacher, also hikes, though she will not do so au naturel, he said. So why does he take off his clothes? “There’s not much to discuss,” he said. “It’s freedom. First, freedom in your head; then, freedom of the body.”
  • A columnist understands that most teenage sexual confusion and curiosity stems from the fact that society bombards them with adult sexual imagery just when their hormones begin to explode, while at the same time expects them to remain innocent and pure.
  • In Vietnam, artists releasing nude photos online is a "phenomenon".
  • Wearing only well-placed shamrocks, 400 people stripped off in London in order to win free flights with Aer Lingus.
  • Mark Simonson recalls the heyday of streaking in the 70s.
  • About 50 nude men and women took part in the Australian leg of The World Naked Bike Ride, and police reported no complaints. Riders stopped and posed for photos with some newlyweds.

The Monthly Newds Part Two 3/28/09

Still playing catch-up...
  • Two naturists are covering 220 miles of the English countryside in the nude to raise awareness of a "Clothes for a Cause" drive.
  • After a few weeks, Marie Osmond's nude spray tanning sessions "seemed as natural as taking your car into a drive-through car wash."
  • Make sure you have a lot of spare time before you visit "World of the Nude Art Photography."
  • A nude portrait of Tony Blair's wife Cherie, painted by a friend when she was just 22, has sparked a discussion about why the British are so prurient when it comes to nudity.
  • A nude photo scandal surrounding Australian politician Pauline Hanson turned out to be a hoax.
  • Some believe that the reputation of a Wyoming county attorney is "tainted" because he admitted to viewing photos of nude women.
  • An 80 year-old woman in Maine advises people to "lighten up" over the topless coffee shop brouhaha in Vassalboro.
  • Kansas resident Allen Potter is concerned "for the morality of the county" because nude dancing is drawing big crowds at The Retreat Club near El Dorado.
  • to be continued...

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/28/09

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Monthly Newds Part One 3/27/09

  • Dropping the word "naked" from "naked mole rat" on a Washington state high school t-shirt was not enough, apparently, because parents are objecting on the grounds the words could be slang for female genitalia.
  • Swimsuit model Joanna Krupa is not worried about being topless in a photo shoot because Pope John Paul II approved of nudity.
  • Critics of Australia's proposed Internet blacklist to control child pornography say that such a filter is nothing but censorship. The proposal has sparked protests across the country. A similar outcry is happening in the UK over a new bill which could define even a comic book like "Watchmen" as being child pornography.
  • Nashville is the latest city to try and control the dress codes of minorities.
  • After more than 50 years of seeking young women to pose in the nude, Playboy magazine is still stirring up controversy on college campuses.
  • CNN covers the "nakation".
    The economic recession is "doing us a lot of favors, maybe because there's the idea that if you've lost the shirt off your back, you should go nude," said Erich Schuttauf, executive director of the American Association for Nude Recreation.
  • Posters of nude women could be banned from Scottish prison cells because prisons should not display "anything which is offensive to other people". One presumes that ax murderers and bank robbers on display behind bars don't fall under the definition of "offensive".
  • In hard economic times, more and more women are turning to stripping to support their families.
  • Freehikers in Switzerland are threatening to sue the canton of Appenzell if a law is passed banning nudity on the trails.
    To the authorities' argument that naked hiking should be banned because it could be detrimental to children, Kettiger responds with incredulity. "Oh, please. In this day and age, when kids have access to the Internet and where images of naked people are on every newsstand, how can they be shocked?" he asks. "Is there really a child out there who hasn't seen a naked person yet?"
  • Robin Lord recounts his visit to a nude beach in the Summer of '71, and the perils of not wearing sunscreen where the sun don't usually shine.
  • The Supreme Court is about to hear a case where a 13 year-old girl was stripped searched six years ago by school officials because they suspected she was in possession of some ibuprofen pills.
    In Ms. Redding’s case, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, ruled that school officials had violated the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches. Writing for the majority, Judge Kim McLane Wardlaw said, “It does not require a constitutional scholar to conclude that a nude search of a 13-year-old child is an invasion of constitutional rights.”
  • Officials at a Brooklyn public library have apologized to a woman who was scolded for breastfeeding her child in the children's book section.
  • Jennifer Dempsey feels more comfortable about her body since she began working as a nude artists' model.
    Instantly I became someone new to myself. The mere act of standing on that platform made me someone who was confident to let people draw her nude body. When I struck my first gesture pose, the artists heads bobbed up and down, looking frantically from my body to their sketch pad, trying to capture the pose before the timer went off.
  • To be continued....

People Don't Know What They Are Talking About

A report that an 18 year old boy is facing up to 5 years in prison and 10 years on the Illinois sex registry for taking a nude photo of his girlfriend when she was only 16 and he was 17, includes the following statement:
Obviously nude photos of a minor clearly fall under the legal definition of "child pornography."
This is a common misconception. Nude photos of anyone at any age are not pornography. From the U.S. Code, pornography is defined by images which show "sexually explicit conduct", further defined as "sexual intercourse, including genital-genital, oral-genital, anal-genital, or oral-anal, whether between persons of the same or opposite sex; bestiality; masturbation; sadistic or masochistic abuse; or; lascivious exhibition of the genitals or pubic area of any person." Read the entire code. None of these "sexting" stories appear to meet the definition, yet prosecutors keep threatening kids with child pornography charges and sex offender lists.

Paul Rapoport on his TERA website offers the following:
By the available descriptions, the photos have as much connection to child pornography as does a cement sidewalk...We don't comment much on this phenomenon, called "sexting" (transmission by cellular phone of photos of people partly or totally undressed). By bringing up child porn charges for such cases where no abuse or coercion is involved, American authorities often abuse their power and show that they understand neither the law they're supposed to uphold nor principles involving the body and teens. If there's a problem, making teenagers criminal pornographers and registered sex offenders for what are legal photos is no solution and is a horrible miscarriage of justice. It also furthers the body phobias and resultant psychological traumas that North America is famous for.
Dr. Rapoport also provides a link to this article by Tony Norman.
There's something of a "destroy the village" mentality operating in the Wyoming County prosecutor's office in the northeastern part of Pennsylvania. District Attorney George Skumanick Jr. believes child pornography charges are warranted for the three teenage girls who refused his generous offer of probation along with a five-week, 10-hour "re-education program" designed to put them on the straight and sexless narrow.

The girls are charged with the possession, manufacture and distribution of child pornography via cell-phone text messaging. It doesn't even matter that other than the exposed breasts of one of the girls, no genitalia or sexual behavior is seen in the cell-phone images. Two of the girls are wearing bras and one is flashing a peace sign, which is pretty perverted in some parts of the country, I suppose. There is no meaningful correlation between the photos, the intent of the photos or the law.

But in the eyes of the district attorney's office, there's something threatening about girls acting goofy in cell-phone photos, especially if they live where the county seat is a place called Tunkhannock, which sounds suspiciously like the punch line of a dirty joke.
Maybe people are beginning to wake up a little bit, as there are signs of victims fighting back.
One of three teens suing a Pennsylvania prosecutor says she does not want to be bullied by the district attorney, who threatened to charge the girls over racy cell-phone pictures.

Fifteen-year-old Marissa Miller said after a federal court hearing Thursday that she did nothing wrong when a friend took a picture of her and another girl in their bras.
Reporters who continue to use words like "racy" in their stories are editorializing, and passing judgement on the girls who took these photos. Nobody seems to be able to stick to the facts anymore when "reporting".

There are people out there who don't believe that this is a nudist issue, but it most certainly is. The cornerstone of the nudist and naturist movement is that being free and natural is the basic right of all human beings, of any age, race, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual preference. This hysteria over what is perceived to be "child pornography" threatens to remove anyone under the age of 18 from participating in naturism. Once that happens, all that will be left is swingers clubs and resorts. Children are the balance to all life, they make adults responsible, caring, and nurturing.

If it's true that 20% of all teens have sent or posted online nude photos of themselves, then we are dealing with a cultural shift, not a crime wave. Fight for your kids, and don't give in to these renegade prosecutors who are perverting the law by using it against the very people it was designed to protect.

Wrong and Wronger

The Columbus Dispatch this morning reports that Rep. Ron Maag, a Republican from Lebanon, Ohio, is crafting a bill to make "sexting" a first class misdemeanor. Specifically, the bill targets only those under 18, outlawing the "exchange and possession of nude materials between minors."

Wake up, people in Ohio. Lawmakers are targeting your children. Make no mistake - any law which criminalizes teen sexuality not only is harmful to children, it is harmful to families, and to society as a whole. It puts parental responsibility directly into the hands of the government.

Never mind that these same children are engaging in sexual intercourse and every other type of human sexual behavior that you can imagine. Oral sex, anal sex, group sex, unprotected sex, lesbian sex, gay sex - you name it, your kids are doing it because they are human and possess strong sex drives.

So now you want to charge them with crimes for mere photos?

The answer here is to EDUCATE children, not to criminalize them. Teach them to be responsible with their sexuality, teach them to wear condoms, take the birth control pill, not to sleep around, to respect their bodies, and the bodies of others. Making the human body a crime not only sends the wrong message, it further alienates this generation from the hysterical adults that don't understand them. In fact, the adults are not even trying to understand, they are only capable of knee-jerk reactions.

A misdemeanor for merely exchanging and possessing nude materials means that any teen with a National Geographic magazine, or a Playboy, or even an art book, could be charged with a crime. And is there a teenager alive that has not surfed for porn on a computer? This proposed law is beyond stupid, it's downright insane.
Maag also noted the suicide last summer of 18-year-old Jessica Logan, who sent a nude picture of herself to her boyfriend that was later spread throughout her Cincinnati-area high school. She was harassed daily at school by a group of girls.

Jessica's mother, Cynthia Logan, has taken Jessica's story on a national campaign to alert teens of the dangers and implications of "sexting."

Maag said, "I think what these teens need is education about how this type of behavior could affect their lives."
It was inevitable that lawmakers would latch onto this tragic story and turn it into political capital. Maureen Kanka, the mother of the girl who inspired Megan's Law, has come out against the criminalization of sexting, saying that prosecutors are harming children instead of helping them. Teen suicide is a real problem, and a complicated issue, but does anyone really believe that adding legal consequences on top of the problems already piled on our kids' backs is the answer?

Adults are always taking about the dire consequences of sexting. Well, those consequences are all legal, and man made. We need to UNDO these laws which make criminals out of our kids, and not create new laws which only further serve to complicate the matter.

Debra J. Dickerson at Mother Jones has weighed in on the issue.
Why is it illegal to take/send someone dirty pictures of you, whatever your age? Granted, I will break my kids arms if/when I catch them doing something so stupid—and I certainly wish young girls, especially, wouldn't disrespect themselves this way. But a crime, a sex crime?...I'm so confused: Who are the minors being sexually abused? Unless the photos were taken without the consent of the subject, I don't see the criminal justice issue. To this DA, possession of a dirty photo of yourself is a crime. To me, it's just really, really stupid.
First of all, we need to get away from calling these "dirty" pictures. We have all these incendiary words - dirty, lurid, pornographic, lewd, obscene, smutty, bawdy, raunchy, vulgar, nasty - to describe nude photos. Throw all these words around when talking about teen sexuality and you will get people all riled up.

However you feel about teen sexting, whether you think it's just a technological manifestation of normal young sexuality, or if it's the work of the devil, think hard and long about if you really want this made into a prosecutable crime against your child. Think about if you want law enforcement officers storming into schools and confiscating cell phones, raiding lockers, rifling through backpacks, just to track down a nude photo. Once this is made a real crime, then police with search warrants will be able to come into the privacy of your own home looking for nude photos under your kids' beds.

Think, America, if this is what you really want.

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/27/09

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

ACLU Sues Overzealous Prosecutor in Sexting Case

It's about time. The ACLU has sued a Pennsylvania prosecutor for threatening children with child pornography charges because they sent nude photos of themselves via cellphones.
The ACLU said Skumanick should not have threatened to file felony charges against the girls unless they agreed to be placed on probation and participate in a counseling program. The ages of the girls were not given. "Kids should be taught that sharing digitized images of themselves in embarrassing or compromised positions can have bad consequences, but prosecutors should not be using heavy artillery ...to teach them that lesson," said Witold Walczak, ACLU Pennsylvania legal director.
These prosecutors threaten children and their parents with harsh and permanent legal consequences, and people are so afraid that they don't fight back, often accepting lesser charges in order to avoid facing public humiliation. Child pornography laws were written to protect children, not punish them, and kudos to the ACLU for finally calling out these out-of-control politically-motivated prosecutors who only want to get their names in the paper.

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/25/09

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Society's Struggles with Sexting

It is often said that we are a country of laws. and those who do not follow the law must pay the consequences.

Others say that we are a country under God, and that if we just follow the Ten Commandments all will be well.

But in reality we are a country of laws AND commandments, struggling between the rules set forth by man, and the edicts of a God.

It is this blurring of legalities with morality which gets us into trouble, when common sense is trumped by blind faith. Sometimes we need to just step back and THINK about what we are doing to our fellow citizens, and ask if laws are written to serve the people, or to serve the wishes of an invisible man in the sky.

Such is the situation with all the teen sexting cases which have broken out like acne all over America. Given high-tech cell phones with megapixel digital cameras built in, teens are using these devices to express their sexuality, sometimes taking nude photos of themselves and sending them to potential sexual partners, or asking others for nude photos. Oftentimes these photos are distributed to others, and therein lies the problem. Like a lie, it's not the actual act that's so bad, it's the ripples left behind in the wake that begin to affect others.

Teens have been having sex since the dawn of time, but until recently the only evidence parents and authority figures were presented with was a fecund womb, at which point it was simply too late to start moralizing. With sexting, there is now visual evidence of teen sexuality, hard-core prosecutorial proof, and adults are falling all over themselves like Keystone Cops trying to deal with what is being termed a "crisis".

Let's face it, teens are always in crisis. Suicide, drunk driving, drugs, dropping-out, gangs, you name it. In spite of all these dangers, teens somehow survive and go on to lead the world.

Did anyone ever stop to consider the fact that society's brick bats wielded to shut down teen sexuality could account for much of the rebellious and destructive behavior found in our youth? Twisting kids in knots of shame about their own bodies and natural desires is bound to lead kids to other outlets in which to vent their frustrations.

The recent suicide of an Ohio teen over sexting demands a deeper look into the phenomenon. 18 year-old Jessie Logan was found hanged to death in her room.
No explanation can comfort (mother) Cynthia or her family. She believes Jessie took her life to escape the relentless teasing and feels like the people who were supposed to protect Jessie, failed her. "The police department didn't protect her. The school didn't protect her. She had no one,” said Cynthia. Because Cynthia knows she can’t turn back the clock, she wants to change the laws. She says she wants “sexting” to stop and for the people involved to be held accountable.
According to Wikipedia, suicide is the third leading cause of death for those aged 15 to 24. Among those at the highest risk are overachievers, the disabled, the aggressive, those who have spend time in detention, and many others. 90% of teens who commit suicide claim that they are misunderstood by their families, and 75% give out warning signs which are often ignored.

The case of Jessie Logan is a tragedy for all involved, but is the answer really to enact stricter laws against sexting, and holding virtually everyone "accountable"?

And now there appears to be a new use for teen imaging devices - recording schoolyard brawls and posting them on YouTube.
In one recent video, two girls are egged on by friends and soon begin punching and choking one another. In other videos, a boy appears to be knocked unconscious by a well-placed haymaker, and a second boy spits out blood after suffering a blow to the mouth. "One of the reasons for doing this is to attract attention," said Nancy Willard, executive director of the Oregon-based Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use. "The more vicious the fight, the greater the attention."
Sounds horrible, doesn't it? Surely this violence will provoke a much more alarm than a nude photo of a teen.
At Vallejo City Unified School District in Northern California, parents last year alerted school officials to dozens of campus fights that had been posted on the Internet. "For the kids, it's entertainment and fun," said Jason Hodge, a spokesman for the school system 30 miles northeast of San Francisco.
Despite this flip remark, the school banned the recording of fights, but no word on whether or not the actual fighting was prohibited.

It seems to me that the real issue here is bullying, not sexting. The tragedy of Jessie Logan appears to be from the "relentless teasing" over her nude photo, not the photo itself. Kids can be very, very cruel - anything is fair game for taunting, from clothing to skin color, or anything else that sets someone apart from the crowd.

So what is the answer? Certainly it's not to make felons out of children who take nude photos of themselves, as many overzealous prosecutors are trying to do. It's also wrong to ignore what is happening and do nothing.

Aside from the Jessie Logan story, most teens engaging in sexting are not ashamed, and don't even realize what they are doing violates current laws.

It will be a measure of our society in how we come to terms with teen sexting. We can either to the reactive route and enact more laws to put more children in jail, or we can become proactive to teach our children about sexuality and give them the necessary tools to avoid unwanted pregnancies. If we are to continue to deal with this through the legal system, actions should be limited to those who use the images for bullying purposes, and not against the subjects themselves.

Abstinence education does not work. Even Bristol Palin says that abstinence-only policies are unrealistic. It is also unrealistic to believe that society can put the toothpaste back into the tube and stop teen sexting by further complicating and burdening the legal system. All we accomplish by prosecuting children over sex is reinforce the belief that the body itself is something to be ashamed of, further objectifying and sexualizing all nudity, and ruining lives.

We need to stop the moral outrage, set aside the false shame and indignation, and get realistic about what kids are doing. They are not disseminating child pornography, they are not morally bankrupt and dangerous to society, they are merely exploring their own sexuality using the tools given to them by adults.

Education and understanding must prevail over laws and prosecutions, otherwise we risk making criminals out of an entire generation of children.

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/7/09

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Keeping Up With Nudist News

Regular readers know that this blog is a labor of love and I receive no compensation for my efforts, and I want to keep it that way. As a result, sometimes dealing with real work and real life causes lapses in posting, such as with this current week.

So, when pauses occur, you should know that you can still keep up with most nudist and naturist news right here on this page. Just scroll down the right hand side to see the "Newsreel" feature which updates regularly on its own.

You can also subscribe to my Google Reader Shared Items Feed which contains items that I personally select as being of interest. Most of these shared items are nudist related, but I throw in a bunch of other things that catch my attention, too.

Also down the right hand side of this page, you will find My Blog List which automatically updates with the latest posts from my favorite nudist and naturist bloggers.

I just wanted you all to know that this blog does keep current every day even if I don't have the time to post as often as I'd like.

Again, thanks to all who stop by every day!

Nudist Photo of the Day 3/5/09