Letter to the Editor: Getting under the skin

The volunteers of the Naturist Action Committee commend Skiff opinion editor Stephanie Weaver for her well-written and perceptive piece on naturism. The reasonableness of choosing to be comfortable with our own bodies would seem indisputable. Sadly, others are trying to criminalize the very skin into which you were born.Lawmakers have, of course, risen to the task. A local ordinance in Florida uses more than 300 words to describe the human buttocks in geometrical terms, so that enforcement officers may determine more precisely when it is properly covered. A law presently proposed in Oklahoma would define nudity as “any bare exposure of the skin located on the body of a person below the armpits and above the knees.”

Against this repressive background, a recent Roper Poll determined that an overwhelming 80 percent of American adults believe that people who enjoy nude sunbathing should be able to do so without interference from officials, as long as they do so at a beach that is accepted for that purpose. Fully half of those polled favored the setting aside of areas of public land for clothing-optional use.

Ms. Weaver has suggested that you “learn to be comfortable in your own skin and with the skin of others.” The human body is certainly worthy of that much respect.

Bob Morton is the Executive Director for the Naturist Action Committee. Its Web site is www.naturistaction.org.