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News of the Nude, no. 2
A few nudesworthy headlines that grabbed our attention in the last few weeks
Welcome to the second edition of News of the Nude, in which we explore and comment on recent headlines or titles that have grabbed our attention for some reason or another.
Where our first edition seemed to inadvertently focus on the United States, this month we have a nice international mix of stories, covering a range of topics, including proposed legislation to censor books and art depicting nudity and sexual content, the ongoing campaigns against drag shows and LGBTQIA+ rights, a bill in West Virginia that could impact nudist establishments, and a personal essay about grief and healing in a French nudist colony.
Looking broadly at all of these recent items we’ve chosen to highlight, it seems that the state of nudism and naturism in the world varies greatly depending on the country and region you reside in. While some parts of the globe such as Israel and the United States are experiencing serious threats to personal expression and body autonomy, others such as Spain and the UK are seeing more positive developments in terms of acceptance and growth of nudism.
I think each of these stories is compelling for some reason or another. Any opinion rendered below is mine and mine alone, but I would really love to hear yours. Please leave a comment if anything here jumps out at you. Share your thoughts, even if you respectfully disagree.
As before, let’s kick it all off with something positive first… 🚀
'Liberated' divorcee turns her and ex's holiday home into naturist resort
Karie Jane, a single divorcee from Derbyshire, has transformed a holiday home in the Canary Islands into the BHH Naturist Resort, welcoming nudist adults and hosting singles weekends, which she says are not sexual on any level. Her interest in naturism sparked after visiting a nudist beach more than 20 years ago and now she greets her guests entirely naked. She believes that naturism strips away judgment and proves that all people are the same underneath, adding that holidaying without clothes is "freeing" and ultimately "we're all just body parts." Karie Jane insists that she wanted to create a community for naturists where they could relax and have their own space other than the beach.
This article is just fun. This lady's living the dream. Good for her.
The original article by The Mirror is a refreshing change from many US news articles that treat nudism as a joke or a source of scandal. Instead, the article—which still strikes a cheeky, lighthearted tone—takes naturism seriously and portrays it as a liberating and empowering lifestyle, and it does a good job of conveying real benefit points. This more respectful treatment of nudists is not uncommon in British press, where there is often a more accepting attitude towards nudity and where naturism is reportedly thriving. It is heartening to see that the article gives Karie and her resort the respect they deserve and portrays naturism in a positive light. 🚀
Port: Proposed bill would censor books and art portraying sex or nudity
A proposed bill in North Dakota is causing concern as it has the potential to censor books and art that portray sex or nudity. The existing law prohibits the open display of pornography in areas where children can see it, but the proposed amendment by Senator Todd Beard would expand this censorship to include a wider category of materials, including written depictions and remove exemptions for art galleries and universities. The bill, if passed, would have a significant impact on the display of art in North Dakota, raising concerns about freedom of expression and censorship.
The bill could potentially impact the depiction of nudity in art and literature, which is of concern for nudists, artists, and any businesses who may be impacted by this legislation, which feels like a fascistic attempt to return to the days of Anthony Comstock. It is important for nudists to be aware of such developments, as it could impact their rights and freedoms. 🚀
South Florida Free Beaches Being Pushed Out of Haulover?
We reported last month on an increase in park ranger activity at Haulover Beach, and some foreboding concerns that were emerging as a result of that increase in activity. Unfortunately, there are new reports that may cause new concern about the nude beach at Haulover, and these concerns are coming straight from the proverbial horse’s mouth. Due to recent developments there, South Florida Free Beaches (SFFB)—the group responsible for establishing and managing the nude beach at Haulover—is experiencing uncertainty about their current involvement in the beach's maintenance. County officials have shut down efforts by the organization to have an authorized shade structure and storage box permanently installed on the beach, and a park manager has suggested that elected officials do not want the presence of SFFB beach ambassadors at Haulover. Despite this, SFFB's President has expressed a determination to continue walking the beach and to establish a new strategy to ensure that SFFB's name remains a part of the Haulover experience for beach patrons. In the meantime, Miami-Dade Parks, Recreation, and Open Spaces have placed a permanent park ranger presence on Haulover Beach, and SFFB remains concerned about the future.
Nudists can and should show their support by joining or renewing their membership in South Florida Free Beaches, and contributing to the Legal Defense/Political Action Fund. The uncertainty about SFFB's involvement at Haulover Beach highlights the need for nudists to support organizations like SFFB, even if they don't live in South Florida. Donations can be made through their website, and their annual fee of $35 s a small price to pay for a thriving naturist community in Miami.
SFFB has a long history of grappling with the city, county, and parks department to establish and maintain a presence on the beach for over 30 years. If you're interested in learning more about the history of Haulover Nude Beach, please check out Episode 7 of Naked Age podcast, "The Mother and Father of Haulover." 🚀
Anna Faris goes NAKED as she stars in an updated version of Adam and Eve story in tongue-in-cheek Super Bowl ad for Avocados From Mexico
Ugh. What a terrible title. Pretty typical of the Daily Mail. Anyway… forget the title. Forget the article. The real story is the commercial:
Actress Anna Faris stars in this Super Bowl ad for Avocados From Mexico's Make It Better campaign, playing the biblical figure Eve in a reimagined version of what would have happened had she eaten an avocado instead of an apple. The ad features a an alternate-universe New York City (known now as “The Big Avocado”), which is a nude utopia dominated by the positive effects of avocados, its residents naked and shameless. The commercial shows nude cab drivers and news anchors and a fashion show where naked models were 'all the rage'. The ad has received attention for Faris' nudity, and the company's decision to hire a 46-year-old actress to play the lead.
First of all, it’s unfortunate that Hollywood choosing to be unsexist enough to hire a 46 year old woman (gasp!) to be nude on television is newsworthy, but here we are.
Second, I enjoyed this ad. It's refreshing and fun to see a nude utopia portrayed in a humorous and lighthearted way. I enjoyed seeing a comedic play on the biblical story of original sin and shame. The fact that this was aired during the Super Bowl indicates to me a growing acceptance of nudity and body positivity in mainstream media, at least a little bit. While it may not necessarily advance society in any significant way, it does help to normalize these themes and challenge taboos around nudity and body acceptance.
Finally, I’m not surprised by reports that Anna Faris has described the experience of acting nude in this spot as liberating. It seems there are new stories in gossip magazines every month about a different celebrity actress who ditches their drapes for a photo shoot and finds body acceptance out of the experience. I’m not suggesting they don’t really have this experience (naturists know). More, I’ve just begun to notice it as a common formula for these specific types of articles using nudity for attention grabbing, obnoxious headlines by the tabloids. Nothing wrong with it… ultimately it brings more attention to the true therapeutic powers that nudity holds and normalizes it as a practice. I guess it’s just unfortunately disingenuous. But what else can we expect from a television ad?
Anyway, good for Anna, good for Avocados from Mexico, and good for the Super Bowl too. I live in Southern California so I’m going to keep getting my avocados from the tree in my neighbor’s yard. 🚀
Spanish high court backs man's right to walk naked in the street
A Spanish high court has ruled in favor of a man who was fined for being naked in the street and attempted to attend a court hearing naked. The court acknowledged the lack of specific laws regarding public nudity in Spanish law, but ruled that the man's behavior did not alter public security, tranquility or order. The man argued that the fines infringed on his right to ideological freedom and stated that he received more support than insults for his behavior. Public nudity has been legal in Spain since 1988, but some regions have introduced their own laws to regulate nudism.
This can be viewed as a victory for individual freedom and personal expression. This ruling acknowledges the right of individuals to make choices about their own bodies and how they choose to present themselves in public. The court recognized the man's behavior as peaceful and non-disruptive to the public order, and did not infringe on the rights of others. May this ruling serve as a reminder to other governments that hold more conservative views around nudity that people should be free to express themselves in non-harmful ways, and that society should be more accepting of diverse forms of self-expression. Let us celebrate and embrace the differences that make us unique, and strive for a world where everyone feels free to be their true selves. 🚀
Nudity is only way to fight Israeli government's archaic agenda
This is not a news article, but an opinion piece, and I’m posting it here mostly to express my support. By recounting her own experiences with nudity and naturism, Yuval Levy highlights the many benefits of normalizing the naked body, including a sense of liberation, naturalness, and intimacy. Levy also astutely notes the conservative tendencies of Israeli society, which often fears and shames nudity, and argues that allowing nudity in public spaces can help dispel those feelings of shame and normalize our natural bodies. Overall, Levy's article is a thoughtful and courageous call for more openness and acceptance of the human body, and I hope it inspires more discussions and changes in public policy in Israel and beyond. 🚀
Discrimination and prejudice against nudism is the worst! Let’s end this!
The original Wordpress post suggests that any form of discrimination, including prejudice against nudism, is cruel and unfair.
I’m with you so far…
The author goes on to compare discrimination against nudism to other forms of discrimination like racism, sexism, and ableism. The author believes that discrimination based on lifestyle choices is just as terrible as racism, sexism, and homophobia. They argue that the prejudice against nudism is worse than other forms of discrimination because it condemns all of humanity, since humans were made to be naked, and also advocates for making it a human rights violation to force others to cover up. At one point in the article, the author suggests that discrimination against nudism is worse than racism.
…And you’ve lost me.
Sorry, but no. Prejudice against nudists and racism are not equivalent. In terms of their effects and consequences, racism is a systemic problem that has far-reaching impacts on individuals and communities—including discrimination in employment, housing, education, and the criminal justice system—while prejudice against nudists is far more limited in scope. By suggesting that discrimination against nudists impacts everyone in the world because they have a naked body under their clothes, the author also conflates nudism with mere nudity. By the same logic, the pope is a nudist when he takes his milk baths. I don’t buy it.
Yes, prejudice is always unfair, and while prejudice against nudism can absolutely have a negative impact on nudists and their loved ones, these incidents are far fewer and far less damaging to the lives of people who suffer from it than are incidents of racist violence, which occur on a daily basis in America and around the world. All forms prejudice are harmful and should be challenged and addressed, and the author does make some good points about body shame in our culture, but these are undercut by some of the more hyperbolic ideas that they are attempting to land in this blog post. Frankly, nudists will never be taken seriously when we compare our privileged adversity so irresponsibly to something that results in persecution and genocide. Let’s try and maintain a semblance of perspective when we talk about these issues, please. 🚀
Report of naked man on Cape Coral porch begs the question: Where can you legally be naked?
The recent report of a naked man standing behind a screened-in porch at his own home in Cape Coral raises the question of where one can legally be naked on their own property. According to Attorney Scot Goldberg, there aren't legal protections if someone is naked outside, but being naked under one's roof is a different story. This gray area may be a difficult issue to prosecute, but if there's a pattern of such behavior, it may become a problem in the future.
This story represents a large legal grey area for a big part of the United States. As such, it’s an interesting case study for at-home nudists. Personally, I live in a condo complex with many close neighbors, and at home nudity always comes with some risk of being spotted. People who value the freedom to be naked in the privacy of their own homes may feel uneasy about this violation of a person's autonomy. These types of laws vary by state or municipality, and they’re often vaguely written. It's important for people to be aware of their local laws and cultural norms and to exercise caution, whenever in view of the public, even if it’s from their own private property (in many states).
One great resources for tracking these nudity laws and how the existing laws differ on a state by state basis, is the Naturist Action Committee. 🚀
DeSantis tries to revoke Orlando Philharmonic's liquor license over drag show
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has filed a complaint against the Orlando Philharmonic Plaza Foundation for holding a drag show in the presence of minors. The complaint accuses the foundation of violating Florida statutes on lewdness and maintaining a public nuisance and seeks to revoke its liquor license. This is not the first time that DeSantis has targeted a venue for hosting a drag performance in the presence of minors. At least 13 states in the US have considered bills that would redefine any venue that hosts drag performances as an adult-oriented business or cabaret. The nationwide backlash against drag and LGBTQIA+ rights more broadly has prompted state lawmakers to introduce at least 200 bills targeting LGBTQIA+ people, according to an NBC News analysis.
We are concerned about the ongoing campaign against drag shows in the US, and the impact it is having on venues and performers. Not only is it an attack on body autonomy and dress freedom, two issues which are near to the nudist cause, but it’s an attack on a beloved Florida cultural institution in the name of conformity to DeSantis’s puritanical agenda. Opponents of fascism across the world should be concerned about such overreach.
We encourage readers to support the Orlando Philharmonic Plaza Foundation in whatever way possible, and to speak out against this discriminatory and unjust attack on the LGBTQ community. This is not the first time DeSantis has taken aim at drag performances, and his efforts are part of a broader backlash against LGBTQIA+ rights across the country. Nudists understand the importance of being able to express oneself without fear of persecution or censorship, and we stand in solidarity with all those who seek to protect the rights of individuals to dress and present themselves in whatever manner they choose. 🚀
‘Turgid’ Penises and ‘Anal Clefts’: New Bill Seeks to Outlaw Adult Businesses in West Virginia
How do you not click on a headline like that?
A bill has been introduced in West Virginia to ban adult entertainment businesses in the state. The Sexually Oriented Businesses Regulation Act aims to outlaw businesses that offer sexually oriented content or services, including adult arcades, bookstores, video stores, cabarets, movie theaters, nude model studios, and "sexual encounter centers." The bill is described as censorship by the communications director at ACLU West Virginia and its language is vague, including definitions of nudity and sexual acts. The bill could impact a wide range of businesses and may even make gay bars and art classes that use nude models illegal. The bill's lead sponsor declined to comment on the legislation and it remains to be seen whether it will become law.
Nudists love to proclaim that nudism has nothing to do with sex, and thusly this sort of thing is not our battle to fight. But clearly there are multiple reasons why nudists should be concerned about this proposed legislation in West Virginia, which aims to ban adult entertainment businesses, potentially including nudist establishments. The vague language of the bill could have far-reaching consequences, and its strict definitions of nudity and semi-nudity could impact a wide range of entities, including nudist businesses. Nudism, being a lifestyle that advocates for nudity, could also be implicated if the bill were to pass into law. Thus, it is important for American nudists to pay attention to this legislation and to voice their concerns, as it has the potential to impact their way of life and freedom of expression. 🚀
Trans Woman Wants Ruling After Topless DMV Fiasco
To be clear, the original article and incident is actually from 2011, but it came into my peripheral recently through twitter when it was shared by gender rights activist Alejandro Carabello (below).
The outrage-generating news item from 2011 discusses a case in which a transgender woman in Tennessee named Andrea Jones who was asking the state to make a consistent ruling about her gender after a government office labeled her as male but arrested her on a female-specific exposure charge. Jones, who had gender reassignment surgery and was recognized as a woman by the Social Security office, attempted to change the gender on her driver's license from male to female but was refused by the Tennessee Department of Safety. In response, Jones walked out to the parking lot and removed her shirt, reasoning that it would be acceptable if the state recognized her as male. However, she was arrested for indecent exposure, and simultaneously referred to as a man by the police. Jones argued that she should not be held to both male and female standards and the Department of Safety stated that a gender change could be made on a license if a doctor's statement indicating a full sex change has occurred was presented.
This incident involving Andrea Jones highlights the hypocrisy and double standards in the treatment of women and gender nonconforming individuals. The fact that Jones was arrested for indecent exposure despite having undergone gender reassignment surgery and being recognized as a female by the Social Security office is a clear indication of the discriminatory nature of the exposure laws. These laws are often used to subjugate and oppress women and gender nonconforming people, denying them their right to bodily autonomy and expression. Nudism is closely tied to the issue of body autonomy and the fight against these types of discriminatory laws. Nudists argue that the human body is a natural and beautiful thing, and that people should have the right to express themselves freely, without fear of judgment or legal repercussions such as what was faced by Andrea Jones. 🚀
What I Learned About Love and Loss at a French Nudist Colony
Again, this is a personal essay, not a news item, but it was published this month on Vogue, and I found it to be a thought-provoking and beautifully written essay about grief, healing, and the unexpected places we find ourselves in the aftermath of tragedy. Hartman's personal story of mourning her fiancé in a French nudist colony is a moving and honest portrayal of the complexities of grief, and her vivid descriptions of the naturist community and its inhabitants make for a fascinating and insightful read.
I think this essay is a compelling read specifically for nudists. It really captures the power of nudity and how it can shift one's perspective on the body and mortality. It also touches on the idea that clothing is what can be erotic, not nudity itself, and how the experience of living in a nudist colony while mourning can have unexpected pleasures and allow for a sense of freedom and connection with others. Overall, the article provides a thoughtful and introspective look at the author's experience with grief and the transformative potential of a nudist environment. 🪐
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