PORTLAND – About two dozen women marched topless from Longfellow Square to Tommy’s Park this afternoon [April 3] in an effort to erase what they see as a double standard on male and female nudity.
The women, preceded and followed by several hundred boisterous and mostly male onlookers, many of them carrying cameras, stayed on the sidewalk because they hadn’t obtained a demonstration permit to walk in the street. About a thousand people gathered as the march passed through Monument Square, a mix of demonstrators, supporters, onlookers and those just out enjoying a warm and sunny early-spring day.
Police said there were no incidents and no arrests – nudity is illegal in Maine only if genitals are displayed.
Ty McDowell, who organized the march, said she was “enraged” by the turnout of men attracted to the demonstration. The purpose, she said, was for society to have the same reaction to a woman walking around topless as it does to men without shirts on.
However, McDowell said she plans to organize similar demonstrations in the future and said she would be more “aggressive” in discouraging oglers.
LOL. “More aggressive”?? I shudder to think of what she means by that.
Seriously. You’re a woman walking around topless in public and you’re upset because men want to see watch you? Er, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t that one of the reasons the “pro-topless” feminists do this in the first place? They seem like nothing but attention hogs to me. Or do they really believe that there is absolutely no difference between a man going topless in public versus a woman going topless in public? Either way, they’re just as clueless as ever, or as the brutally honest Brutally Honest blog writes:
Feminists are largely disconnected from reality.
Very much so. Case in point (from a pre-topless march article):
McDowell stressed that Saturday’s stroll is not intended to be a full-blown protest (too confrontational) or political demonstration (too organized). In fact, no advance publicity whatsoever was planned before a Facebook posting about the walk found its way into the latest issue of Portland’s bi-monthly West End News.
(“Full topless nudity is strongly encouraged,” the posting advised. “But for the more modest, pretty electrical tape will be in supply.”)
“It’s not a march,” MacDowell said. “We’re just going to take a casual stroll down Congress Street and see what happens.”
Probably not much, at least from a legal standpoint.
Calls last week to Portland City Hall and the Cumberland County District Attorney’s office confirmed that while it is illegal for men and women to expose their genitals in public, local and state laws contain no such prohibition on uncovered breasts – male or female. (Although, considering some of the men who insist on parading around topless, one could argue that there should be.)
Maine, in fact, is one of a handful of “top-free” states that have no laws banning breast exposure, according to the national organization gotopless.org. The group lists the others as Hawaii, New York, Ohio, Texas and the “coast of California.”
Nadine Gary, 45, of San Diego, a real estate manager with a heavy French accent who helped found gotopless.org in 2007, said last week that she had not heard of the Portland event.
“But I’m happy you’re telling me about it!” she added cheerfully.
Gary said her organization, which plans to hold National Go Topless Day on Aug. 22, already is well aware of last year’s flap over the Grand View Topless Coffee Shop in Vassalboro, not to mention the ruckus 12 years ago over the young woman in Newport who insisted on letting it all hang out whenever she mowed her lawn. (A subsequent effort to pass a local ordinance forcing her to cover up was soundly defeated.)
“It’s comfort. It’s fun. It’s freedom,” Gary replied when asked why going topless is so important. “It doesn’t mean that at every single moment, I’m going to take off my shirt. But sometimes it’s hot and you can take off your shirt. Why can’t I have that option?”
For the record, it should be noted that gotopless.org is a spin-off of the Raelian Movement, which holds that we were all created by little human-like creatures from outer space who plan on returning in 2035. No word yet on what they will – or won’t – be wearing.
Ugh. “Feminist” narcissists make me ill.