Um, well it seems that there was much discussion here which is nuked
, or something, but still, here's a totally seperate thought for you:
How are U.S. laws offering different definitions of "indecent exposure" for men and women constitutional, given the equal protection clauses of the Bill of Rights?
Admittedly these laws are based rather firmly in common sense
, abeit common sense tainted by some social preconceptions that, viewed objectively, are really pretty arbitrary
But still: if the law is required to treat men and women equally, then why is it we can have laws that ban women from baring their breasts in public but ignore men? No matter which way you look at it, you are applying a legal double standard
, which is supposed to be unconstutituonal..
I don't know about which other states think this way (check the rec.nude legal faq if you're really interested) but in Texas, the law is set up where women can be topless anywhere men can. (City laws can, of course, impose more stringent guidelines if they so wish.) I think this is the way it should work, personally. People pretty much never actually take *advantage* of this legality, but they could if they so chose.
The problem, of course, with espousing this viewpoint is the fear that i will appear to be, in some roundabout, intellectual way, saying the equivilent of "SHOW US YER TITS!".. but really i just personally think that america has way too much arbitrary stigma on nudity. I really, really wish we could try to stop seeing the human body as something dirty and just see it as something natural (or whatever cilched thing i could be saying here), something that's just *there* and we don't need to lust after it or hide it away.. but that's a discussion for another node. All i'm talking about here is that anti nudity laws that set a sexual double standard would seem to be outisde the scope of what our government has the right to legislate.
I do realize, of course, that whether or not these social rules are logical, they are deeply embedded into people, and changing a law is not going to change their idea of what is "immoral", or reduce their percieved offended hurt if they are in an oh look, breasts situation they don't want to be in. And i'm going to avoid for the moment the question of whether the public nudity laws should *exist*-- let's just let my point here be they should be equal. Doing so would at least insert an "everybody is equally human" feel into the issue, and begin, in some tiny way, to chip away at the huge layers of unthinking psychological blindness that have been built up around the issue..
And personally i kind of think that a law that would wind up requiring all those old fat guys with the man-tits to wear shirts when they jog around on that path in Sam Houston Park that runs alongside memorial drive wouldn't be too out of order.. y'know, considering. -_-