King Author wrote: EdgarJPublius wrote: King Author wrote:
EdgarJPublius wrote:Changing the laws does not equal changing the society.
Personally, I'm all for legalization of all forms of nudity wherever it is currently prohibited, however I don't believe that most people only wear clothes because it is the law, there are also socio-cultural and, most importantly, practical considerations involved in the choice to wear clothing that are completely separate from the legal considerations.
As legalization will not make toplessness appreciably more common, I suspect that it will not do much to make topless women a less 'interesting' sight in most public places.
I'm curious; what's your basis for believing that topfree legislation wouldn't make toplessness appreciably more common?
EdgarJPublius wrote:Changing the laws does not equal changing the society...
...I don't believe that most people only wear clothes because it is the law, there are also socio-cultural and, most importantly, practical considerations involved in the choice to wear clothing that are completely separate from the legal considerations.
Well that's quite simply not true. The topfree movement itself is proof of that -- there are women who want the same freedom to go topless in public that men have.
My point is that these women aren't a majority, or even a particularly large minority. Even if every woman in the topfree movement went topless 100% of the time, the total increase in female toplessness as a result would be marginal at best. Even if you posit some unknown proportion of women who would go topless some of the time if given the choice but are not active participants in the topfree movement, you still have to consider that it is far more likely that these women will only go topless some small percent of the time, and so the unknown proportion would have to be rather large to lead to a visible increase in toplessness.
Just think for a minute about the stated goal of this movement, toplessness on an equal level as men. I live in a pretty warm area (Austin Texas as a matter of fact, which will be important later) where the temperature during the summer is frequently above one hundred degrees
and even in other months can hover around eighty most of the year.
And yet, even in the dead of Summer, I rarely see men going topless, it's just not that common, and there aren't even any socio-cultural taboos against male toplessness. And let's not forget that, asid from socio-cultural norms against female toplessness, many women find activities such as a man might perform topless (exercise, running, sports etc.) uncomfortable without some support.
Now, to expound on why where I live is important, and to add to a point brought up by LaserGuy. In many western communities (such as Canada), there is in fact no
law against female toplessness. In Texas, women in fact already have
the right to be topless to an equal extent as men. And Austin, Texas is particularly liberal with a strong culture of hippies and naturism etc. However, living here for many years, and even working as a lifeguard at public pools, I have never seen a woman topless (regardless of weather) outside of a few areas where toplessness/nudity is particularly encouraged.
Even where the law supports it, the western (and particularly American) cultural taboo against female nudity is a fact, and one that won't go away over night, you can't just sign a bill into law and do away with hundreds of years of cultural imprinting.
However, this is all moot. We're specifically talking about the position that women should be able to go topless in public but not expect to draw stares.
I think this is intimately related to that discussion. As long as the taboo remains in force, and female toplessness remains a rare sight, there will be staring, that is just human nature.