Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
In this all-female household, there are no locks on bathroom or bedroom doors. The three of us wander around in various states of undress. I brush my teeth in the buff while my younger daughter, who is 5, sits behind me on the toilet, singing to my rear end. My elder daughter, 8, sticks her head into the shower to ask me about the various “yuck” factors of puberty, about the feminist and anthropological ramifications of shaving my legs, about the real low-down on babies finding their way into their mommies’ bellies.Indeed they are.
I tell my girls that what they are seeing when they see me is a real woman. I show them where their little fists and heels pressed against the skin of my belly when they were inside me. I explain nipples, birthmarks, sex. I shake my booty. They shake theirs. We are absurd. We are lovely.
The panel of justices ruled Thursday that a policy that allowed nudity at state beaches – the Cahill Policy – is an invalid policy because they said it didn't go through the proper procedures before it was adopted years ago.Still no definitive word on an appeal to the state's Supreme Court, but this looks like a huge loss for the Naturist Action Committee. Allen Baylis suggests that the "remoteness" condition mentioned in a letter to the American Association for Nude Recreation could be the basis for a new argument, but the point could be moot since it's been ruled now that the original Cahill Policy was merely a guideline and not a regulation. This would mean the the state could impose any guideline it chooses on any land considered for nude recreation, such as remoteness, or simply not allow nudity at all, which is officially not allowed on state beaches anyway, according the California Department of Parks and Recreation.
Their decision overturned a lower court's decision in which an Orange County Superior Court judge ruled that the Cahill Policy is indeed a regulation and that state Department of Parks and Recreation violated procedure when they adopted a nudity ban without first seeking public feedback.
The appellate justices heard from two sides of an ensuing battle over Trail 6, which has traditionally been something of a safe haven for naturists.
Park officials said the agency followed the rules and did not violate any policy because they said they never set aside a designated area for nudity. They contend public
nudity is not allowed on state beaches.
Instead, state officials said, they chose to look the other way and allowed public nudity at the beach until they started getting complaints.
It seems to me that the NAC has to decide between continuing the fight over technicalities, or to take the case directly to the public and foment change at the grassroots level.
Politicians, officials and judges generally err on the side of caution. They are often not interested in doing the right thing, but take the politically expedient course that sits best with the general public. In the case of San Onofre, there is the perception that it's the nudity which is the catalyst for the bad behavior which has resulted in complaints, so in order to "solve" the problem the quickest and easiest solution is to ban nudity altogether. This is a mindset that's very hard to change, and legal actions sometimes only further serve to stir things up, and create more complications.
I wish that AANR had backed the NAC in their action, because even if the result was the same, at least nudists and naturists would have presented a united front. As it stands now, the NAC appears to be the troublemaker, while AANR, by taking the compromise route, now appears to the state of California to be the more reasonable organization. AANR wins the public relations battle here.
As I've said before, AANR will claim victory in the short run, but what they have done by appeasing the DPR is set back the free beach movement by years, if not decades. Naturists need to look beyond the spin that AANR is preparing to put on this development.
Even if AANR has a deal, with the state winning this court battle, there is not likely to be any clothing-optional areas in California state parks anytime soon, in my opinion. The DPR has found new power in this ruling and will likely exercise it against nudism and naturism.
Unless AANR and the NAC get on the same page on this issue, the chance for any success is deeply lessened. Dues paying members don't care about the political backbiting and finger-pointing, they just want results, and with this divide both organizations are merely serving their own interests and letting down nudist and naturists everywhere.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Cooper said he didn't realize he was near a school and didn't intend for the kids there to see him. "That was my mistake," he said. "I messed up completely."..."People in Ashland seem to be very paranoid about kids," he said. "I think they should all send their kids to a nudist resort or have naked day in Ashland where everyone is naked. Then all of those hang-ups would disappear."In a society so heavily-invested in clothing and body shame, it's not a good idea for one individual to push the envelope on public nudity. Even though Cooper might actually be a sincere nudist and body advocate, his unilateral actions will be perceived by most as kooky, or even perverted.
It's far better to organize groups of people for nude events, such as the World Naked Bike Ride, AANR's skinny-dipping event, or Spencer Tunick's nude photography installations.
When Tunick was taking photos of only a handful of nude people on city streets, he was being arrested. Now that he has thousands of participants, he receives police protection, and is welcomed wherever he goes.
While some cities such as Boulder are still resisting full nudity in the WNBR, the protest event seems to be picking up steam around the world with more and more people participating. This year in London around 1200 riders bared all to being awareness about oil dependency.
And the city of Fremont seems to really love the naked bike riders who kick off the annual Solstice Parade.
After an attempt to exclude nudity from the annual Bay to Breakers run in San Francisco, the numbers of people protesting were so great that organizers backed down and there were more naked people than ever strolling through Golden Gate Park.
Women's topfreedom in Columbus has become a true tradition at the annual Comfest event at a downtown park, and this year I observed more topfree women than ever before. The silly argument that the sight of nude female breasts is somehow harmful to children is debunked in Ohio every year as tons of children frolic in Goodale Park completely oblivious to the women not wearing shirts.
It's going to take more and more mass demonstrations of body freedom before society truly adapts to the idea that exposure of skin is neither shameful nor perverted. It makes me wonder if all the well-intentioned work of the Naturist Action Committee in pursuing legal actions for hot spots such as Huntington Beach and San Onofre Beach in California wouldn't be better directed to organizing protest events to work on public perceptions.
It's logical to assume that a society willing to accept public nudity in downtown parks would embrace nakedness in it's most obvious and natural setting - a beach. What is needed is an army of a thousand people, all nude with body paint and protest signs, marching on San Onofre beach with members of the press in tow. What is needed is a thousand women, all bare breasted, descending unannounced onto a public beach to mingle with the suited multitudes until they blend in.
But going it alone isn't the way to win the hearts and minds of a public which has been ingrained with the notion that nudity is sexual, shameful, forbidden, dangerous, and illegal.
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
Hopefully, you will find that place to be here. I can't report on everything that happens every day, but I do provide several places where all the news comes together quite comprehensively.
First and best is to subscribe to my shared items here. The shared items are a combination of nudist blog posts, nudist news and related subject matter, as well as other news that I find interesting. This feed can also be accessed along the right-hand column of this page under the header "What I'm Reading Today."
If you just want to read the latest blog posts from the best of the nudist and naturist writers, then visit The Naturism Blog which brings them all together in one place.
Finally, you can access the Nudist News section down this page in the right-hand column. Not as complete as the other methods, but a decent snapshot of current events.
Hopefully these features will prove to be helpful in consolidating the latest news from the nudist and naturist worlds.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
But due to the many words of encouragement, which have been quite overwhelming and 100% positive, I have decided to remain online by making a fresh start. On The Political Naturist, I will continue to voice my opinion on matters relating to social nudism and naturism.
People seem to have mixed opinions about photos. I think that images of nudism and naturism are important in helping to show people how natural and fun the lifestyle will be, so I have created two new blogs. Adam and Eve will be a collection of photos of nudist couples, and Nudist Photo of the Day and Nudist Men are self-explanatory.
The Naturism Blog is conceived as a central source for all nudist and naturist blogs, and will certainly evolve over time.
So again, many thanks to all for the tremendous support, any blogging effort is pointless without an enthusiastic audience.
Monday, June 22, 2009
The tempest is based upon AANR's receipt of a letter from Tony Perez, Acting Deputy Director for Park Operations in California, which basically reiterates the 1979 "Cahill policy" which states that nude recreation is allowed in all state parks unless there is a complaint by a private citizen. While the original policy makes no exceptions as to which public lands fall under the rule, apparently the new Perez letter designates "remoteness" as a condition for clothing-optional use.
NAC appears to have a valid point. AANR does not mention the "remoteness" limitation in its "Government Affairs" column in the May 2009 bulletin. Alonzo Stevens, AANR Government Affairs Chair, implies that the Perez letter offers assurance that "the Cahill Policy was not threatened in the state of California, with the exception of San Onofre, because of the litigation." In fact, the exact words in the letter are as follows:
Since 1979 the Cahill Policy has tolerated nude sunbathing in remote state park areas up to the point where a complaint is received from a member of the public. It remains in effect as a practical approach to enforcement of CCR Section 4322 in remote areas.The original Cahill letter makes no mention of "remoteness" as a condition, so this is indeed a new interpretation.
I agree with NAC that the notion of "remoteness" as being a necessary component of a clothing-optional beach is dangerous, because keeping such areas away from populated areas will only further stigmatize nude sunbathing, and will no doubt draw unwanted sexual activity.
The question also seems to be whether of not the Perez letter is official policy. In the case of the 1979 Cahill Policy, a letter was sent to park officials statewide, and I don't see any evidence that the "remoteness" condition has been widely distributed, but its clear that at the very least, Perez considers it to be his policy.
AANR claims that California's Parks and Recreation Department "wishes to partner" with AANR on a "neutral project", whatever that means. This could just be an effort to "appease" the nudist community by offering a remote piece of land for clothing-optional use, and to make the issue go away.
Or, AANR could be playing the fool, cleverly drawn out of the current beach fight by the DPR with the promise of a partnership which will ultimately be reneged upon if and when the state succeeds in banning naturists from San Onofre.
Or, for all you cynics out there, AANR could be deliberately trying to derail the public lands issue in California in order to force more people into private clubs and resorts.
As Abraham Lincoln once said, "a house divided against itself cannot stand." NAC and AANR should be united on this issue, but blind ambition and foolish politics are pitting the two organizations against one another. It's getting ugly, and ultimately members of both organizations stand to lose more than they gain. But who is right on this issue?
NAC claims that AANR is willing to throw San Onofre Beach under the bus in order to further its own agenda. That does appear to be the case.
AANR has sold its soul to the devil on this issue. Since the Court of Appeals is set to issue a ruling soon on the San Onofre case, AANR is betting that the Department of Parks and Recreation will ultimately win, even if it loses in the short run. While the DPR is currently obligated to enforce the Cahill Policy, it will likely attempt to make changes through administrative process, and the "remoteness" condition appears to be their goal.
Clothing optional beaches must be accessible, visible, legal and family-friendly. Banishing nudists and naturists to remote areas only further marginalizes the lifestyle, attracts the perverts and the creeps, and ultimately makes it easier for governments to shut down the activity altogether.
AANR needs to join the NAC in fighting to keep the Cahill Policy in effect as it was originally written in 1979. Anything less is a defeat for nudists and naturists everywhere. In the short run, by siding with the DPR, AANR will no doubt continue to claim victory, especially if an official clothing-optional area is created in a remote area of California. Such a "victory" would be short-sighted and hollow.
You can donate to the NAC here.
Again, the stupid argument is made that in order to reign in teen sexuality, it has to be made a crime with legal consequences. Mr. Walsh has the audacity to actually suggest that punishing teens for doing what they learn from society at large is the right thing to do.
I believe that there should be a consequence to get kids' attention, but teen stupidity merits a misdemeanor, not a life-ruining felony.
As a nation, we have to rise to the occasion if we want our children to fully understand what sex really means in a young person's life. Sexy videos on TV and racy sites on the Internet tell kids sex is no big deal. Some state officials are teaching them it's criminal in the extreme. If we want them to grow up to be happy, healthy adults we need to give them guidance and clear standards.
No, the real answer here is to decriminalize teen sexting altogether. It shouldn't be a felony, a misdemeanor, or even a "parking ticket" offense. Nobody seems to want to admit that teens are having all sorts of sex. from oral to anal to group, often unprotected, but there is this social hysteria over a few nude photographs. Mr. Walsh wants teens to grow up into "happy, healthy adults", but fails to understand that puberty begins earlier than ever today, and that trying to button up the urge to merge for up to nearly 8 years in hormonal teens is not only idiotic, it's damaging.
Teen stupidity is not the problem here, it's adult stupidity.
Sunday, June 21, 2009
The constant parade in magazines, television programs and movies of pumped-up, gravity-defying, perfectly shaped female breasts has set a standard in the mind's eye of some sort of unattainable ideal that has nothing to do with how people really look.
Much pressure is placed on women to bounce back after pregnancy, but the reality is there's very little bounce left. Despite what celebrity mums might tout about how they achieved their amazing shape two weeks after delivery, the fact is it's physically impossible.
It's about time we put a stop to unrealistic expectations and just got real. This week I am embracing imperfection.
If you are not a nudist or naturist and have gotten your perception of female breasts from Playboy magazine and pornography films, click here to see a gallery of non-sexual normal breasts.
Whenever a woman practices topfreedom, someone always makes the argument that the sight will be somehow harmful to children. In fact, the opposite is true - children are being harmed by being denied access to the sight of normal, nude human bodies.
Everybody is apparently a victim here. What is the crime? The girl allegedly exposed her breasts in the club, a violation of state law. Now all parties involved in frantic finger pointing to cover their own asses.
The exposure of a woman's breast, no matter the age of the individual, should never be a crime. Any man with breasts the size of watermelons can walk down the street topfree without fear of criminal charges, yet any woman doing the same on virtually any street in the United States can be arrested, and face the possibility of being forced to register as a sex offender.
This 14 year-old girl has been conditioned by society that her breasts are marketable as sexual objects. The exploitation by her alleged kidnapper is damaging enough without the entire legal system piling on and reinforcing the notion that female breasts are dirty, illegal, and somehow dangerous to society.
The shame should be on Texas and this twisted club owner, and not on the child.
RELATED STORY: Police Raid Ohio Bar, Find 14 Year-Old Topless Performer