Posted: May 17, 2023

I’d like to thank the people who responded to my Diversity column in the April Bulletin. The purpose of the Government Affairs Team is to protect nudists’ privileges from undue attacks. The way legislation is written often allows a bill that seemingly has no connection to nudist activities to be applied to them, due to the vagueness of the law as written.

My concern with legislation targeting drag performances is linked to that vagueness. Especially when it comes to “Venues where children might be present”. First, it’s clear there are differences of opinion on what happens at drag shows and what the content of those shows may be. I am not advocating allowing children to see sexually provocative performances of any nature, whether drag or straight. AANR’s mission is clear: we promote wholesome nude recreation. The point I was making is closely tied to a phrase I heard in some of the replies to my column, “mission creep”, which is also what happens when well-meaning laws get applied to nudist venues. The reason we may oppose a bill that seems to have no direct bearing on nudists is that same “mission creep” when it comes to overzealous interpretations of phrases within a law.

We support efforts of the top-free community to equalize laws concerning bare chests between the sexes because that equality helps normalize exposure to the human body without sexualizing it. There are still laws outlawing breastfeeding in public areas because of the sexualization of an exposed female breast for any reason. We should be able to understand that simple exposure is not a moral dilemma.

World Naked Bike Rides (WNBR) was originally a protest against fossil fuels and global warming. That is still part of the conversation but many of the interviews I have seen with participants focused on the ability to be naked in a nonsexual environment. Participants wanted to be able to ride their bikes uninhibited by clothes. The comradery of the event is exhilarating to the participants. The rise in the number of WNBRs is an outgrowth of that acceptance of nude protests.
We are clear on AANR’s mission to promote wholesome nude recreation in appropriate settings. We do this by working where we can to normalize the joys of nude recreation, and away from shaming for celebrating the diversity of our bodies, to the general public.

-Tim Mullins
AANR Government Affairs Chair and AANR Vice President

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