The Right To Be Nude In Public

The Right To Be Nude In Public

Democracies often pride themselves on their liberties, but they often have overreaching restrictions on nudism and naturism. There is a litany of laws and codes that restrict or outright ban any forms of public nudity, often equating them with public indecency, sexual exhibition, disturbance to the peace, among others.

In France "Publicly visible sexual exhibition in public zones" is punishable by 1 year of imprisonment and a €15,000 fine. In the UK, nudity that is likely to cause harassment, alarm, or distress is illegal. In the United States, laws surrounding nudity can differ greatly between states. In Oregon, nudity is protected as free speech as long as there is not intent to arouse, while Arkansas bans nudism beyond the immediate family unit, including on private property.

These laws are often seen as relics of the Victorian sensibilities Many feel that they have been or will be replaced with a more liberal approach to nudity, as society itself becomes more socially liberal. Unfortunately that is not always the case. In Spain, which has traditionally been tolerant of Nudism many municipalities have recently restricted nudism on public beaches. In 2012 the arguably liberal hotbed of San Francisco banned public nudity.

Reasons For Recognizing The Right To Publicly Nudity


I've written a myTake about the positive self-image implications of social nudity before. You can read it here: How Nudism Can Improve Your Body Image. Individuals that participate in social nudity report higher self-image than those that don't. Individuals also report having a more realistic view of the human body.

While nudists are often depicted as sexual miscreants by those unfamiliar with it, there is evidence of nudism bringing pleasure that is far from immoral. Being naked is liberating! While not pleasure might not derive from every instance of social nudity (social nudity isn't all that fun when there is an outbreak of mosquitoes, for example), the fact that it brings pleasure to some people at least some of the time is enough to contribute to the defense of public nudity.

The Right To Be Nude In Public

Lack of Detrimental Effects

Multiple Studies have shown that exposure to non-exhibitionist public nudity lacks any detrimental psychological and behavioral effects that people often attribute to it, and in fact these studies have found that exposure to public nudity, while not participating in it, can improve your body-image.

It is often feared that exposure to nudity has a detrimental psychological impact on children, but this fear is not supported by any empirical research. Studies have shown no relationship between childhood exposure to nudity and the development of any psychiatric symptoms later in life. In fact, some positive effects have been found, including reduced rates of teen pregancy, STDs, use of recreational drugs, antisocial behavior, and higher levels of self-acceptance.

Freedom of Expression

For many nudists, the right to be nude in public is necessary for expressing their identity. For these nudists, anti-nudist laws deny them the legal right to align their outer appearance with their inner convictions. Laws and codes which restrict this freedom undermine the dignity of nudists, as treating people in a dignified way requires that they be free to act upon their ideas of a good life so long as it doesn't impose unreasonably on others.

The Right To Be Nude In Public


One of the most cited reason for denying the right to be publicly naked is that many people are offended by public nudity. 'Being offended' is this case means that these people have an unpleasant mental state induced in them by the sight of public nudity - shock, annoyance, anger, fear, embarrassment, etc.

Does nudism-induced offence justify the current restrictions on nudism?

There are two things we must look at to answer that question: Do people have good reasons for being offended, and does their being offended constitute a greater evil than that which offends them?

To the first question, there are many things that people find offensive that are not criminalized. There is still a large group that finds homosexuality offensive, as well as groups that find interracial marriage offensive. In much of the world, those offences are unsuitable grounds for government interference.

Ugly Bodies

One reason frequently cited by those offended by public nudity is that they find naked bodies ugly (often meaning "certain kinds of naked bodies"), and as a result unpleasant to look at. This is an unreasonable reason to outlaw nudism, as it is based only individuals perceptions of the human body.

Deviant Sexual Behavior

Many people associate public nudity with immorality and sexual deviancy. Nudists are often seen as exhibitionists, people who get sexual pleasure from exposing their genitals and/or breasts to strangers. Such offence is unreasonable as well, as it is based on misconceptions of nudism and the motivations of nudists.

The Right To Be Nude In Public

Prejudicial Beliefs

I would argue that the offence felt by many people is due to the prejudicial belief that nudity is immoral. Legislating based on prejudicial beliefs is highly problematic. Prejudicial beliefs leading legislation has to anti-sodomy laws, the prohibition of interracial marriage, and forced segregation in the past, and we (for the most part) rightly see many of those prohibitions as arcane today.

In Conclusion

The right to be publicly naked should be established. The freedom to be publicly naked serves well-being and expressive interests, and any offence that nudism might cause does not outweigh or override the reasons for securing the right to be publicly naked.

The Right To Be Nude In Public




The Right To Be Nude In Public
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20Girl Opinion
47Guy Opinion

Most Helpful Guys

  • curiousnorway
    Being naked itself isn't wrong, but I still think people should wear clothing because of hygienically reasons. Not everyone are good at washing themselves and if everyone were naked - bacteria would spread. Clothing isn't only made to keep us warm, but also protect us from bacteria. In public transportation like buses many people shares the same seats and if everyone sat at them with their bare butt, it wouldn't be very clean.

    I don't want to sit in a seat where a person who've not wiped his/her ass properly have sit. If another naked person sits in the seat, they may get bacteria in their genitalia from another person's butt. People getting sick isn't a good idea and providing healthcare for everyone would be expensive.
    Like 11 People
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  • Poormanscomedian
    I think it is not decent. It is people that all they think about is sex. I bet if you could find out how many sexual partners they have had it would be many and all would have that in common. Again, it is people wanting no standards. They walked around nude in Noah's time. People were having sex in public, killed people in public, raped people in public and God sent a flood to "clean " things up. America is heading for another cleansing. If I had kids, I would not want them seeing adults running around nude and being sexual, in public. That would be a violation of my rights as I see it. Besides that is why we have clothes to wear.
    LikeDisagree 7 People
    Is this still revelant?

Most Helpful Girls

  • MlleCake
    I enjoy nude recreation, and I would like there to be more places to enjoy it, especially at our beaches. I have to drive several hours and climb up and down a little rickety goat trail to get to the only legal nude beach in So Cal.

    I am ok with being fully clothed in most public places - I don't want to force my nudity on anyone. But yes, I would like it if the restrictions were eased.
    LikeDisagree 23 People
    Is this still revelant?
    • Oh yes, Black's Beach. It's great but you're right there should be more.

    • Vegeta01

      No one would want to see your naked body grandma yuck!!!

    • goaded

      @Vegeta01 Do you think she should be naked for your enjoyment, or hers?

  • DeeDeeDeVour
    This is nice. The Right To Be Nude In Public If you don't mind, I'd like to share this on another site.
    LikeDisagree 10 People
    Is this still revelant?
    • I found it on another site, so I can't object.

Scroll Down to Read Other Opinions

What Girls & Guys Said

  • CarpetDenim
    And what about the right to not see random people naked in public? There are designated areas where nudity is legal and viewed as perfectly fine and acceptable. Nudists should keep to these places and stop trying so hard to make it okay to show every intimate detail of their bodies to strangers who have no interest in seeing them.
    LikeDisagree 10 People
  • elizamichale2
    oh i wish somebody could be in government who can change all such laws and allow to be nude whereever we want
    i love being nude and you are right being nude is not porn or sex but people dont understand and many women would just go nuts listening to this
    LikeDisagree 8 People
    • Yes, we need to get some nudist friendly politicians, it's generally not even an issue on their radar.

    • @Scarecrow13 and thats something really really sad

    • goaded

      Germany has a naturist-friendly Chancellor. (There's a picture online, if you want to search for it.) The country as a whole isn't that fussed.

    • Show All
  • SarahsSummer
    Aside from this seeming to be a plea from a guy who wants to see more boobies, Have you considered the idea that most people don’t want to see nakedness in their day to dat lives?
    LikeDisagree 9 People
  • lucas262
    No I, d say just plain no don, t nobody wanna see that if they want to have places for that it hung optional what ever but as for out and about Willy nilly god no, there are kids out there for fucks sake where is the line where has all the common sense and common decency gone in society?
    LikeDisagree 8 People
  • CandyCaneZoe
    There's nothing wrong with seeing a naked body. We are all one or the other, and with the internet today, we've seen it all by now.

    With that said, it does need restrictions. I dont want to find myself one day in a crowded elevator with guy behind me getting closer.
    LikeDisagree 8 People
  • LaBrownEyes
    The body particularly a nude one is linked to sex, and some say sex is too much/inapporite for some including kids. I personally just don't think people should be nude in public, I find it barbaric and slutty. I hate slutty more.
    LikeDisagree 9 People
  • Rissyanne
    Nobody except horny men want to see that shit. That’s what it’s all about.
    LikeDisagree 18 People
  • looneymalooney
    I am more than ok with my nudity and I do not feel there is something wrong with my body, I am a healthy looking individual. If someone wants to see me naked, they should ask and we will arrange for that IF I want to see them naked as well.
    That's the catch, I might not want to see others naked, so in turn, I understand that I don't have to force my sculpted naked body on others without their consent.
    "Hey, hey look at my genitals! Look, look!"

    I have the house to myself, I walk around naked, if I need more space there are beaches especially made for that. And if someone is there, then those are people that consented through their presence that they
    are willing to see my genitals though they don't know me.

    We are bringing into discussion "democracy", yet we forget that democracy is a mix of liberties and rights against obligations and responsibilities.
    I understand that some people only want liberties and rights, but that's a society that was not created yet.
    It will probably exist when your brain will be connected to a machine and your body will not be used anymore. It will be just your brain and your imagination. At that point you will have all the liberties and no obligations.

    Another thing. hygiene of such a society. first thing that comes to mind public transport. I don't want to touch some old ladies sweaty stinky boob while trying to go to work.
    I don't want to see some disgustingly hairy pussy under 3 flaps of fat passing by while I eat some ice-cream on a bench in the park.
    How about people with children in a subway for example. Crowded as hell at peak hours. So am I supposed to accept that a child's face might be right in some dude's dangling penis?

    There are plenty of people with a lot crazier fetishes and fantasies and they live a happy sex life without others knowing it.
    For those that want to feel in touch with nature, there are plenty of forests and trails and hidden beaches spots.
    If I feel the need for walking around naked, I can go to such a place, hell even bring a girl and get "free" with her.
    I don't need to tell anyone or have anyone see me. But that's the catch. Some nudists want to be seen.

    And this whole "let me be seen naked by others though they don't want it", is why I believe this nudism in public discussion stems from the need of the individual to be seen naked by other people: also known as exhibitionism.

    Just like smoking. There are special places for nudism
  • Bandit74
    Most citizens don't want to see naked people in public places so the desires of the really small % of society who wants to be naked in public shouldn't overule the desire of the majority who doesn't want to see you naked.

    And I also wouldn't want people to be sitting their naked asses on public benches/chairs.

    That being said, a year in jail and a 15k fine is quite excessive for a punishment.
    Like 5 People
  • RetroAlpha
    I don't have a big problem with people walking around nude, but I think their needs to be some consideration. I would immediately choke out and dismember anyone - male or female - who walked anywhere near my kid without clothes. Children's faces are junk/ass height! C'mon! XD
    Disagree 1 Person
  • DublinRollerGirl
    God killed and made clothes for Adam and Ever for a reason. There will always be people parading nude for reasons other than being into nature. There would either be an increase in sexual crimes such as rape, or it would go down if everyone was naked. Frankly my opinion is that they would go up, because they have sexual deviants all over the world that are mostly in the closet. But you still have child porn, pedophiles, flashers, rapists, incestuous relationships, and kidnappers who sexually torture , rape, and kill their victims. All you would be doing is taking something out of the wrapper and make it more appealing to someone's appetite in such a way that they just have to have it. If you want to be naked start a nudist colony and have at it. Today people just want the right to do any freakin' thing they want to. Well maybe we should make it legal to murder and rape too.The Right To Be Nude In Public
    LikeDisagree 8 People
    • Of course the guys down vote me because they are the ones who want to see naked women. ha ha

    • I didn't know God killed clothes. Is that fabricide?

    • @CandyCaneZoe I meant He killed some animal and made them some clothes from the hides. It was the first euthanasia of an animal.

  • Scarecrow13
    There is not much more I can say except, well said. Our hangups about nudity really don't make any sense, especially when you consider the things we do allow in our society. Nudity is harmless, and those who say laws against it are :for the children" don't seem to realize it is the adults that have more of a problem than children. Children don't care, nut until they are told to care.
    Like 1 Person
  • windknowsmyname
    ooooooookaaaaaaaay. we should definitely go nude even though one belief was push off to another.
    LikeDisagree 3 People
    • I said nothing about requiring nudity, only allowing it.

    • im just sayn, being sarcastic. i mean same as allowing breakfast feeding in public. you know people gotta make big issue out of it. im not for it or against it, just better have good hygiene.

    • But what if i get a boner by looking at ur wife and ejaculate on her by accident is tht cool or nah

    • Show All
  • Canadaman99
    How do you propose we deal with the following hygiene and public health crisis from the spread of bacteria and germs caused by poor hygiene and neglect?
    Like 4 People
  • Massageman
    As a Massage Therapist I- quite literally- have seen it all and more than I care to remember. So goes the case for clothing in public. As far as nudist clubs, etc. the choice to live for a few hours with no clothes does not equate to sex, and the majority of sun clubs's members adhere to that basic tenet. As to sanitation, a requirement at nudist clubs is to carry a "personal towel" on which you must ALWAYS sit while nude.
    Like 1 Person
  • MementoMori_
    It seems strange to me that humans somehow evolved to actually create laws to prohibit nudity. It is our natural state and seems to me unconscionable that it should be outlawed.

    I do thank God for clothing though because I don't want to see 90% of the women I see in public naked. So maybe there is something to it.
  • pleasestopthis
    Maybe there should be more nudity-friendly beaches so people who feel like this would be able to go there, but I don't want to see random people naked around and I have my right to feel this way.
    LikeDisagree 6 People
  • Shezadi
    You are shameless
    Show this article to your mother, sister, wife and daughter, and ask them to become naked on the beach so strangers can look at them
    Like 1 Person
  • Redstang88
    I’m totally neutral on this. I won’t be stripping down anytime soon, but if people want to that’s fine. They can go ahead and get naked at the beach or the park or whatever, but if you’re walking around town let’s keep the clothes on.
    Like 1 Person
    I'm very much enjoy public nudity, if there is any place allow us to be nude.
    Like 2 People
  • ThisAndThat
    Prohibition on nudity creates lots of money for governments by making it taboo. When it's kept taboo and someone sees it they don't know how to handle it, over react to it in one way or another.
    Like 2 People
  • nonratracereality
    Well said. Accepting what is is better than attempting to accept which means your in limbo. Like playing chess and holding onto the pawn. As long as you hold it it's your move once you let it go your turn. . is over. It's a choice and your choice should not impact a persons right to decide what's good for them or not. There is a time and place for everything. If we apply that general rule then possibly misinterpretations can be understood and allowed to flourish freely without impacting on someone's morals. It's about choice not force acceptance and understanding not selfishness and ignorance.
    Like 1 Person
  • RolandCuthbert
    Your take reminds of the movie "Slapshot" with Paul Newman. Newman plays a hockey player. And throughout the entire film, he and the rest of his team are playing games constantly getting into fights. In fact, they develop a strategy where they don't even focus on hockey, they just cheat and fight.

    Well, the one guy on the team who was a really good hockey player decided he had enough. So one game when they were doing their thing, he just decided to do a striptease and skate around the ice naked.

    Then one of the hockey players looks at him and says, "That's disgusting!"

    We would never have nudity in American society. Because we are just that hypocritical.
    LikeDisagree 2 People
  • BobbyC65
    We should have the right to walked out our front door naked nude if we want two.
    LikeDisagree 4 People
  • Sixgun77
    Im going to vote no on this. This is not something I want for the society I live in.
    Like 6 People
  • LegateLanius
    I have the right to not see them nude in public. The vast majority don't either. The fine is very excessive but I don't need to see that shit.
    Like 3 People
  • elizamichale1
    You are absolutely right darling in every word of yours
    LikeDisagree 2 People
  • girlinthemirror
    U can get a lot infections and bacteria if u r nude in public...
    Sometimes its good to be nude at home. and feel no clothes on... but not in public for me
    Like 1 Person
    • Especially if they have shaved themselves bare and there is no pubic hair to filter all the stuff out that may now wind up inside the vaginal canal.

    I do nkt think the body is offensive or immoral that’s trsicukkus it’s as if under clothing we are monstrs.. . If anything that will send message that it’s ok to raie or do unspeakable things as long as you are naked 😐🙄

    I do think it should be legal but limited to beaches bc you can swim it off. not in public buildings and transportation bc well in modern world too many porous surfaces just waiting too absorb bacteria. I don’t want someone’s dirty bum sweat on my hooha.

    But totally support nudity on beaches 😊🌹
    LikeDisagree 2 People
    • Shezadi

      vivant sis, where are your Indian values? You are Indian not white. Indian girls wear saris they are not supposed to be nude. Bollywood cannot become vulgar like Hollywood. Bollywood is art whereas Hollywood is all about business.

    • VIVANT


      I do not think nudity should be used as entertainment or gratuitous. Only that individualized should not be criminalized for being human and having skin. I don’t think movies should be potnographic. Nor should nudity be commercialized.

  • Grayout
    That's great and all. Being able to express yourself that way would feel liberating. But really, how many people out there associate nudity with sex? Mixed signals and unwanted attention would be up the wazoo from where I see it[
  • jacquesvol
    Nudity hurts nobody.
    Nothing wrong with nudity if nobody calls the cops on you.
    Like 1 Person
  • femalepretzelmaker
    But what if i get bubble gutz and shard on someone by accident or what if i got like this relly big butt pimple waiting to explode and it pops on the chair im sitting in and i leave the puss there and then u come and sit in it is tht cool or nah or what if i then think i can poop whereever i want like a dog or cow and im standing right next to u and i just decide im just gonna drop a duke right here fuck it and then it begins to smell are u gonna finish talking to me or walk away and be totally offended by my uncensored and untainted pure state as i also begin to urinate on ur leg as a sign suggesting im attracted to u is tht cool or nah
    LikeDisagree 4 People
    • ... this is that slippery slope shit, ot never gets any less ridiculous.

  • xkildy
    This is yet another topic that is like most highly interactive , I will say my peace. There are area's that are meant for the nudest that's fine each to there own way of living and dressing. But one has to think about the others.
    There are people who dislike the idea of a nudest. So if you think about stripping down in a public beach with no sign that its fine to do so. Then be prepared to pay the piper. My point is don't create trouble for your self just cause you want to be naked all the time, moral or immoral right or wrong. We all have to follow the common sense rules of the world.
  • malegender
    I agree, people are too uptight. the human body is not dirty
    Like 2 People
  • FunkyMonkee
    If Buddha didn't want us to be naked, he would've made us get born in 3-piece suits!!
    Like 1 Person
  • Gangstaelephant
    If only adam and eve didn't listen to the snake...
    Like 1 Person
  • jss123
    Private nude beaches or areas of beaches reserved for nudity are fine but not in public places where people are forced to see someone nude against their will.
  • Pamina
    That's what nudist places are for.
    LikeDisagree 10 People
  • art84
    I myself wouldn't be comfortable being naked around around other people. I think nudity would be done in private and not in public places.
  • DJZest
    slim and/or fit women are allowed to be naked in my presence

    fat women and guys are not
    Disagree 1 Person
  • JacobCornchip
    Nudity is great. There's nothing wrong with letting it all hang out
    LikeDisagree 2 People
  • legalboxers
    if your in a nudist colony and allowed to be, I see nothing wrong with it
    Like 1 Person
  • SilverRain92
    I don't see any problem because there are special places for nudists
    LikeDisagree 2 People
  • Waffles731
    There is no right to be naked in public get over yourself
  • BellumEtPacem
    This reminds me of the scene from the shining where Jack Torrence makes out with the nude lady who turns out to be a decaying corpse.
  • Golden-Thread
    Yeah, to prove u r not Muslim. Now a days teens using that trend.
  • LogicBomber
    Essentially women already have this freedom, it’s only men who are expected to have social dignity.
  • thottttiana
    We r not animals we have clothes for a reason
    LikeDisagree 8 People
  • Kelly6
    I love nude places or topless places
    LikeDisagree 11 People
  • Ellie-V
    I agree ☺️
    LikeDisagree 8 People