In most of the United States (where I live) women may legally be as bare chested as men, subject only to the usual “attractive nuisance” (my term) laws that men must also respect wherein one’s actions may not disrupt the general peace. People should be able to admire women’s breasts as a natural beauty without needing to be sexualized. Are scenic landscapes sexualized? Flowers? Lovely skies?
Yah … probably someone’s boat is floated, but I’m sure it’s very, very rare. And men’s bare chests are often sexualized, too (check out the thread on Colleen Criss’s My SL post from today, for example) though far less frequently. But women’s bare breasts seem to raise hackles far more often and I think that the cause is we don’t often see them in public. Relegating them to secret Internet sessions and the privacy of your own home exacerbates the problem. “Free The Boobies!” I shout.
This was on my mind when I began my part of the Topless Tuesday in Second Life commemoration (really, who doesn’t celebrate boobies?) last February (see here), I intended to stay topless in SL all day every Tuesday. That’s not hard, even if you hit a G-rated sim. Just don’t get caught. But even I admit that there are times it really isn’t appropriate. Like attending the Bay City Alliance meeting that happens every Tuesday. Yes, the meeting is in a Mature sim, but child avatars are present. To adhere to the spirit of the day I once attended the meeting as a topless male, but since then I’ve either kept my shirt on or worn a “fun” avatar.
|Me as a guy. Still a bit muscular for my taste (the upper arms/inner elbow is a bug, I think) but still better than the overly He-Man form typical of Second Life. To each their own, I say.|
So I’m conditioned into the social norm, too, I suppose …
If Topless Tuesday becomes more popular, though, perhaps we can all “grow up” and treat a woman’s body with the same regard as a man’s body. “Free The Boobies and Free Your Mind!”
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PS: Check out the Topless Tuesday in SL Flickr group here.