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Oh my days.
Do special days to commemorate things help?
There is already a World Naked Day, a day for no swimwear, a day for no bra wearing, various WNBR events around the globe and the increasingly popular World Naked Gardening Day (actually 2 days, October in the Southern Hemisphere and May in the Northern Hemisphere).
There is a work-from-home naked day, a naked hiking day and recently there was a national topless day, the closest Sunday to August 26th, Women’s Equality Day.
While I am happy to support and engage with most of these days, it strikes me that as a naturist, I already live most days like this.
I don’t need a semi-official day to make the leap towards accepting body freedom, I’m already there.
So who are these days for? They are clearly not for the nudists and naturists, as they have already accepted a way of life that celebrates the naked human form and revels in the comfort of enjoying the world without clothes. Those people who are well on the way to eliminating body shame from their lives don’t need to mark the philosophy with a sprinkling of celebratory days. People who accept others for who they are rather than what they look like aren’t going to be enlightened or swayed in their thinking by one day set aside to reflect.
These days are not for the people who already understand that everybody is different and yet we are all the same under our clothes.
Perhaps these days are for the non-naturists. The general public at large who consider matters of body shame and gender equality too complex or too difficult to think about.
Maybe they are there to soften up people, raise awareness and promote acceptance. If so, are they working? Reports from around the world would suggest that the laws and rules around public or social nudity are being rewritten to be less tolerant and more restrictive.
With the exception of Spain, where the laws have recently changed to allow women to be topless at public swimming pools, there have been many reports of laws strengthening bans on nudity.
Some of these laws appear to be so badly written and poorly considered, that they risk catching out people for behaviour that was not the target of the legislation. The unintended consequences of poorly written laws can have far-reaching effects.
One law in Florida aims to ban children from any performance that includes sexual content. All well and good we might say, until you realise that the definition of sexual content is poorly defined.
According to lawyers for one business challenging the law,
“…the new law is so broad and vague that it could be applied to almost any performance that involves a man dressing up like a woman, even if the performance isn't sexual in nature. “
The unintended consequence is that it may be an offence to let your kids watch a film like Mrs. Doubtfire or The Nutty Professor (the 1996 version rather than the 1963 original).
It might be that having specific days to normalise nudity has done very little to change the perception that simple non-sexual nudity and gender equality are things to be discouraged and shunned. Perhaps we need more days with stronger messages to demonstrate that the naked human form is not something to be frightened of or ashamed of. Perhaps the idea that females should have the same rights as men to go topless on a hot summer day or while swimming is something that people fighting for equality have misjudged.
There might be perfectly valid reasons to deny half the population who identify as women the rights that the male-identifying half enjoy. Whatever your gender and however you identify, the world seems happy to accept that not all nipples are created equally.
I have yet to think of a valid reason that this might be the case, and nobody has been able to articulate to me why women's nipples and breasts should be covered while men’s are not.
Perhaps there are already so many "days for" and “days to celebrate” a multitude of different things, that the world just doesn’t care any more.
August 26th, as well as being National Women’s Equality Day, is also National Toilet Paper Day, International Cosplay Day, National Cherry Popsicle Day, National Webmistress Day (I had to look that one up, and no, it has nothing to do with BDSM), National Franchise Appreciation Day and National Dog Day.
For most of modern society, many of these may be “So what?” Days, and mean nothing. While naturists and nudists seem to flood social media with celebratory images and posts to mark these days, we appear to be the only people who give these days a second thought.
So while these national celebratory days may not be effective at championing the causes that they are named for, does that mean that we should ignore them? Perhaps we should support every opportunity to publicise and normalise a more inclusive and equal society, no matter how minor or insignificant others may view them.
One day or day one? You decide.
Thank you for reading and have a comfortable day.
It’s a family thing.
Is the term family-friendly or family-run an indication of wholesomeness?