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October 24, 2012

Comments

Anna

Pass the mind bleach.

JuliaM

Well. That's helping the diet.

Rafi

It looks like 'radical nudism' is mostly a middle-aged gay white male thing.

David

Rafi,

“It looks like ‘radical nudism’ is mostly a middle-aged gay white male thing.”

A fat middle-aged gay white male thing, yes. The people who actually insist on taking their clothes off do seem to be doing it out of spite.

David Davis

I didn't notice any pretty young women. Only bums. Does that tell us something?

David

David Davis,

“Does that tell us something?”

It seems to be a fairly specialised kink. I think we can assume they aren’t trying to share a glorious aesthetic experience. Even many of the locals, whom I assume are fairly accustomed to juvenile displays, are finding the ‘activism’ a little intrusive and annoying. Zombie cites an article in the Bay Area Reporter, in which the protestors’ need for attention and provocation is pretty obvious, if not actually pretty: “They have become more aggressive in the Castro. Some don cock rings – euphemistically referred to as ‘genital jewellery’ – to simulate an erection. Others, according to witnesses, shake their dicks at oncoming traffic, obviously seeking a reaction.” Needless to say, local businesses and other residents, especially those with children, aren’t terribly impressed.

As I wrote following Zombie’s previous report involving many of the same people:

Some of you may register a whiff of disingenuousness in exhibitionists accusing their critics of being repressive and stuffy. Exhibitionists may be eager to dispense with clothing in incongruous locations – say, a traffic island in the middle of a busy intersection - but they desperately need an audience, preferably a clothed one, and preferably one that’s embarrassed, inconvenienced and unwilling... Writing in the Bay Guardian, Tim Redmond dismissed as “shit” the idea that parents taking their kids to school may not appreciate walking past groups of old men displaying their genitals. Readers obliged by adding the inevitable accusations of “rightwing hatred.” Because parents who don’t want to have to walk their children past creepy naked guys are obviously just full of that hateful rightwing hateyness.

But I don’t think you have to be prudish - or worse, “rightwing” - to object to fetishistic public nudity. Setting aside modesty and mutual respect - and small children asking what cockrings are - there are some basic hygiene issues. Imagine you’re in a supermarket queue with a basket of groceries. Is the thought of some old bloke’s tackle hovering near your lettuce or freshly baked baguette a pleasing one? And isn’t that the whole point of “radical” exhibitionism - to shock, to transgress - to make others feel uncomfortable?

San Francisco has plenty of beaches, clubs and amenities catering to nudists and keeping them apart from residents who might take exception, say when on the school run. But being nude around other consenting people evidently isn’t enough; it isn’t providing the required taboo. Taking to the streets and parading in front of random people, including children, betrays a fetishistic, confrontational motive. The whole point is to be noticed by clothed people – ideally people who really don’t want to look at gnarled genitals and flabby arses. That’s the thrill, such as it is.

WTP

Well what is far more disturbing than the nudist documentary is Zombie's report on the Up Your Alley Fair. Look it up on his site as I fear linking it from work as it is definitely NSFW. It makes this story look like a church meeting.

David Gillies

"Look how transgressive I am!" Mutatis mutandis, this is the same spirit that animates Penny Dreadful's self-parodic pabulum or the wilfully obscure output of po-mo luminaries. It's just so goddamn childish: the smug urge to show off and shock mummy like a toddler with a particularly heroic bowel movement.

David

David Gillies,

“Look how transgressive I am!”

Exactly. It’s all a bit needy and sad.

As Zombie says,

Although the Castro may be a gay mecca, it is not exclusively populated by single gay men, nor are the surrounding neighbourhoods gay. Many families with children live in and around the Castro, which means that children are out in public, occasionally encountering the nudists. In fact during the protest itself, as you can see here, families with children needed to get from Point A to Point B along Market Street, and had no choice but to navigate their way through the crowd of naked penises.

Which may strike some as funny, at least initially and from a distance. But imagine you’re out shopping with the kids in tow and having to weave your way through large groups of unattractive men waving their tackle at you. And the standard blather about “civil rights” and “body image” isn’t very convincing. One doesn’t have to have “unrealistic issues of body shame” to find the exhibitionism tiresome or inappropriate. And the denials of any sexual aspect are also unconvincing, especially given that so many of the participants and organisers are enthusiasts of fetish clubs and websites catering to people who like public sex and scandalising others, and for whom the whole point is to have an audience, whether titillated or repelled.

It’s rather like how the people at last year’s ‘protest’ claimed they just wanted to be left alone - while squealing for attention on a traffic island in the middle of a busy intersection.

mojo

"...could it expand to all of California..."

Like hell. Try that shit in the Valley, freak.

the wolf

"But I don’t think you have to be prudish - or worse, 'rightwing' - to object to fetishistic public nudity." That this needs to be stated is sad commentary itself.

So we can't object to gay white males exposing themselves in public; indeed, visually assaulting others, including children, with their genitals. Imagine a lone straight white (or black for that matter) chasing a woman down the street with his wang out. How long before he is arrested for sexual assault? Does being a gay male even in San Flipping Francisco still hold some kind of repressed minority cachet?

Mike James

Mojo, what part of the Valley, if you don't mind my asking? I can tell you that people down here in Kern County would not be very good sports about that sort of thing.

Karen M

Others, according to witnesses, shake their dicks at oncoming traffic, obviously seeking a reaction

My son did that to visitors when he was about four years old. He grew out of it.

Elrond Hubbard

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no effect on society." [Mark Twain]

David

Karen,

“He grew out of it.”

A supporter of the exhibitionists pops up, as it were, in the comments at Zombie’s place and insists,

It’s only your selfish control freak streak that wants to dictate what other people wear; your disrespect for the opinions and lifestyles of anyone whose opinion and lifestyle doesn’t match what you consider ‘proper’… Your statement reminds me of how selfish, childish and disdainful of anyone else’s rights so-called ‘conservatives’ are.

It seems to me this is more than a little dishonest. Setting aside the issues of exposing oneself to children, the impact on local businesses, etc., I think what’s objectionable is that random people are being made participants in the exhibitionists’ psychodrama, whether they wish to be or not. For many, if not most, of the ‘activists’, this isn’t even about an enjoyment of being naked per se. It’s about confronting other people with unsolicited nakedness. That’s the enjoyment – it’s a juvenile kink. Being nude in private or among consenting nudists in dedicated bars, clubs, at beaches, etc., doesn’t give them enough of a thrill. Because the people there are willing. Hence the demand to display their genitals in front of random passers-by. An audience is required in order to feel transgressive and it’s pretty obvious that’s what matters, whatever the denials. They want to be naked near you. They want you to witness their daring. They want you to react. It’s essentially a kind of challenge - an imposition on others, and the act of imposition is, for many, the whole point. And so the source of the “selfishness,” “childishness” and “disrespect” is also pretty clear.

[ Edited. ]

mojo

Mike James: Sacramento

No, we're not all lefty loons. But we are outnumbered by them.

mojo

"Nudity is not a crime!"

Maybe not, honey, but in your case I'd say it was a tort.

penseivat

My fiurst thought was, "There's not a decent tit amonst them." Then I looked agin and realised I was wrong!

Mike James

Mojo, we've been living in Occupied California since the Ninth Circuit Court overturned Proposition 187. We need a secession movement to separate the Central Valley from the coast.

rabbit

For some reason, laws against nudity don't seem to be needed in Calgary.

Reed

...but please all remember - it's the Tea Party folk who are the real fringe nutters and lunatics.

Stuck-Record

"They want to be naked near you. "

Absolutely.

The parallel with car stereo aficionados is clear. The purpose is not to listen to their music, it is to make YOU listen to their music. Often it's not even the music, since the excess wattage makes the music indistinguishable from pure noise. The purpose it to make you turn and look . Or even, if you are half a mile away, go: "Where the hell is that coming from?"

Like it's street culture sibling, graffiti, the point of the exercise is to intrude into your space. Your offence/objection/disgust is part of the process as much as the paint/sound system.

David

Stuck-Record,

Well, if a group of overweight middle-aged people announced that they wanted to stand around naked with each other in a club, bar or secluded beach, I doubt this would cause much fuss. It’d be very hard to care one way or the other. Which is why the ‘activists’ demand something more provocative. The goal isn’t even nudity as such; the goal is to be seen transgressing. And how needy is that? The San Francisco area has numerous nude-friendly spas, clubs, diners, cafés, nature trails and at least three nudist beaches. It’s hardly an area hostile to nudity. But the ‘activism’ above isn’t about people who want to air their nethers on a beach, in pools, among trees or among like-minded souls. It’s about exhibitionists who want to display themselves among people who aren’t like-minded and who may not wish to view the gnarled genitals and subsiding buttocks of, for the most part, sad old men.

sackcloth and ashes

I get the impression that despite the image San Francisco is a shit place to live:

http://www.cracked.com/blog/5-reasons-san-francisco-worst-awesome-city-in-america/

average josephine

It’s essentially a kind of challenge - an imposition on others, and the act of imposition is, for some, the whole point.

My case against Marriage Equality, exactly.

Steve

Josephine,

"My case against Marriage Equality, exactly"

How is marriage equality an imposition on anybody? How can you possibly equate this with public genital waving?

svh

They're being radical and progressive… by acting out like something left over from the Seventies.

mojo

I still say a little pepper spray works wonders.

Steve 2

Steve - "Marriage equality" is a bullshit propaganda term for the latest silly psychodrama of the Left. If and when they get their wish on "marriage equality", they'll simply move on to the next ridiculous demand in the hopes of shocking the bourgeoisie while holding themselves out as being so much more tolerant and enlightened than the redneck bigots who resist whatever the cause du jour happens to be.

Case in point: the naked idiots in San Francisco. Who knew that San Francisco was such an uptight, oppressive, conservative place? Thanks, naked idiots.

Being a progressive means one is never happy unless one is progressively inventing new drama, it's a formed of arrested development. We need to treat the Left as we would a puppy that hasn't been toilet trained yet. Pandering to their whims only encourages more bad behaviour and ultimately you end up knee-deep in crap.

Steve

Steve 2

I don't disagree with much that you say but am still left wondering what the hell it has to do with marriage equality.

If you think that gay marriage is a straight-forward left/right issue then, I believe you to be somewhat mistaken. Homosexuality is not exclusively manifest in lefties, Douglas Murray, for instance, is on record stating that he is gay and wishes the Roman Catholic church would allow gay marriage but realises that this not likely to happen. I don'y go out of my way to pry about peoples sexuality so can't offer further examples but know for a fact that there are several Conservative MP's who are openly gay (eg. Alan Duncan) and would, I am sure, welcome marriage equality, particularly regarding property rights and inheritance. What's wrong with that?

Gay or straight, why anyone wishes to politicise sexuality is beyond me.

Steve 2

Steve - "Gay or straight, why anyone wishes to politicise sexuality is beyond me."

Like most people, I don't give a tinker's damn about what two grown men or two grown women, or even multiple groups of grown men and/or grown women, choose to do in the privacy of their own bedrooms. As long as I am not forced to somehow subsidise it, watch, or take part.

As a rough generalisation the politicisation of sexuality, including the "marriage equality" thing, is just another battering ram used by the Left against the traditional values and institutions of Western Civilisation, which they seem to hate with a passion. Ever since the Left in the Western world gave up on their indigenous white working classes, they've been waging an escalating war against the normal.

Sodomy is as old as the hills and some ancient societies were even more "progressive" about it than we are in these permissive times, but the politicisation of homosexuality and demands that the core institution of society be redefined to include homosexual unions is a uniquely modern phenomenon and almost exclusively championed by the Left.

The modern Left encourages us to think of ourselves as a Balkanised patchwork quilt of competing minorities, all the better to demand an ever bigger and more intrusive State to ensure "social justice".

Rob De Witt

Mostly what this crap is is tiresome and tedious. I remember clearly, from as long ago as the '70s, San Francisco graffiti in response to the relentless Gay Power!!!/Gay Courage!!!/Gay Outrage!!! signs everywhere which stated simply "Gay Boredom."

Yaaaawwwn.

Alan Kellogg

If public nudity were legal, nobody would care.

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