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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: San Francisco | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Police State and Prisons
Protest Against Nudity Ban in San Francisco!!!
On October 30, 2012 there was a protest against Nudity Ban in San Francisco in front of the City Hall. After the rally a handful of naked people marched down market Street with a marching band and sings of classical nude paintings and other signs such as "The Only Wiener that doesn't belong in San Francisco" - with a photo of Scott Wiener crossed out, "Nude is Not Lewd", "War is obscene, not nudity", "Nude is Natural" and a classical painting called "The Origin of the World" depicting a body of a woman with her legs spread prominently displaying her vagina. The protest was against anti-nudity legislation by Supervisor Scott Wiener ("The Wiener Bill") which would criminalize nudity in the city of San Francisco.
The protest video is posted here:
Gypsy Taub's speech at the protest - Oct 30, 2012, San Francisco:
Dear friends, dear brothers and sisters,
We are here today because Supervisor Scott Wiener thinks that it is up to him and not up to us to decide what we should and should not wear. Scott Wiener tells us that our bodies are disgraceful, disgusting, dirty and harmful to society. Scott Wiener has decided that it is time for all of us to return to the “good old days”, meaning the Dark Ages. He decided that it is time to go back to the all-consuming body shame and sexual repression that we have spent centuries trying to liberate ourselves from. He wants to do away with progress, liberation and freedom that the people of San Francisco have cultivated for centuries. When he sees a nude person he wants to publically humiliate that person, handcuff them and throw them in jail. That is his vision for the future of San Francisco.
There have been many like him throughout human history. The most successful at such policies was Adolf Hitler. Such policies have always, without exception, been present in every totalitarian regime known to humankind.
I grew up in communist Russia and know first-hand the tyranny of body and sexual taboos, the tyranny of shame and fear that lie at the core of those taboos, the tyranny of having to hide my thoughts and feelings about my own body and the bodies of others, the tyranny of self-hate that inevitably follows such upbringing. Russia has come a long way since then and has achieved impressive levels of sexual liberation. But not all of Russia. Look at what Mr Putin has done to Pussy Riot, the 3 wonderful young women who dared to challenge his fascism and hypocrisy. The name of that band alone is such a challenge to the old-school culture of shame, self-hate, fear of women’s sexual power and total moral degradation and self-destruction of such a society.
What we are witnessing today in San Francisco is a similar attempt by the same type of mentality to publically humiliate, imprison and destroy the beauty of human body and spirit. This legislation that would criminalize nudity in our city is nothing short of a cultural and spiritual coup d’etat by a self-proclaimed ignorant and blind man who is using the shame and darkness that haven’t yet been healed in our society to gain very intimate power over our bodies and spirits.
Scott Wiener and his very few supporters proclaim that nudity harms children.
Having grown up in the nightmare of sexual repression I personally go out of my way to raise my 3 children without body shame. We run around the house naked, we go to as many clothing-optional hot springs, beaches and festivals as we possibly can. People constantly tell me how amazing my kids are, how free and comfortable they are with themselves. My kids are living proof of how healthy it is to grow up in a nudist environment, without the tyranny of body shame.
My 12-year-old daughter Inti is here today to present her nude art work at the nude art contest and to march for body freedom with us.
It is amazing how in America blatant violence is perfectly OK for children to watch but God forbid if a child sees a boob. It is perfectly OK for a child to watch people degrade themselves in utter hate and fury, to spill guts all over each other but God forbid if a child sees a couple French kiss or express physical affection. Is it any wonder that America has set up military bases in almost every country on this planet? Is it any wonder that America has some of the highest rates of violent crime in the world?
In the 60-s San Francisco gave birth to the new paradigm, to the paradigm of peace, love, freedom, unity and celebration of life. Many of us in this city are doing our best to continue to carry that torch that lead so many out of the dark and into the light. Many lives have been healed and changed by this love and freedom, many have embraced a new vision of the future that would celebrate the beauty of human spirit.
Today that future is under attack. This proposed nudity ban is a backlash against the growing liberation of body and spirit in San Fransico. This is an attempt to crush and eradicate that liberation. Caught in their own shame and fear some of our public officials are willing to go along with this disgraceful move. But we need to remind ourselves and remind them that WE are in charge of our lives and that our politicians’ job is to represent us and not some small special-interest group with a dark agenda. We need to remind our politicians that if they betray public interest they will be removed from power one way or another. We should have no tolerance for abuse of power, no tolerance for tyranny against human body and spirit.
You can’t stop progress, you can only delay it temporarily. Going back to the Dark Ages of body shame and sexual repression is not possible – no matter how hard some of us may try. I saw a great quote once that referred to the Arab Spring. It said: “You can crush the flowers but you can’t stop the spring.”
The Declaration of Independence states that we all have unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. I strongly believe that body freedom is an unalienable right given to us all by our Creator, and that no human being has the right to take it away. The day will come when laws against nudity will be ruled unconstitutional, just as we recently witnessed the Supreme Court rule that discrimination against gay and lesbian couples is unconstitutional.
Supervisors, I encourage you to act in the name of progress and freedom. I encourage you to exercise true democracy where the political leaders represent the majority and not small special-interest group. I encourage you to be true to the people of San Fracncisco. Please help us defeat the proposed Nudity Ban. Please kill this legislation! It deserves to die.
Dear friends, PLEASE!!!! Come to the Committee Hearing this coming Monday Nov. 5th at 10 AM at the City Hall Room 263. This is the only chance we get to make public comment to stop the Nudity Ban before the full board of Supervisors will vote on it later in November.