Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Naked in San Francisco

It seems that a plaza or two in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco have become popular hang out places for nudists. Some people have complained about this so today a bill will be introduced by one of SF's supervisors that would ban nudity in public places. I asked the boys what they thought about this. Their first reaction was to ask if this would ruin the various fairs and events in which some San Franciscans participate naked, e.g., Bay to Breakers, Folsom Street Fair. The answer is no. The bill exempts these events. So, the boys felt, it seems reasonable then to avoid offending people.

I pushed back. Who decides what is offensive? What about someone who gets offended by revealing clothes, say tight leather pants with holes. Could they petition to ban that? In some countries, women have to cover their entire bodies. They "offend" others if they reveal their arms or faces. Where do you draw the line between covering the entire body and covering nothing? Would a tiny bikini be appropriate? The boys agreed this was a complex issue with a "slippery slope" to watch out for.

I am not sure what the right answer is, but I would rather err on the side of freedom than on the side of censorship...

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