by Matthew S. Bajko
Courtesy of The Bay Area Reporter.
A showdown over whether San Francisco should ban public nudity is looming as the issue again rears its head. This time the tipping point may be due to naked men wearing cock rings.
District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener disclosed to the Bay Area Reporterthis week that he is open to introducing legislation at City Hall that would ban public nudity.
“I have not done so right now but I am considering to do that in the near future,” said Wiener, whose district covers the Castro and a public plaza where many nudists gather on sunny days.
His reviewing of whether stricter rules are required is being driven by an increase in the number of naked men wearing cock rings in public, said Wiener. His office has been fielding calls all summer from constituents upset with the practice.
“People are absolutely repulsed by it,” said Wiener.
The openly gay supervisor, who joked that he never imagined when he ran for public office he would be asked about cock rings, said he agrees that the penile accouterments are inappropriate in public.
“People can have whatever view they want to have on public nudity in general. But to be walking around with a cock ring on or something similar is just not acceptable, responsible behavior,” Wiener said. “The whole purpose of a cock ring is to draw attention to that area.”
Many nudists, in turn, contend that sporting cock rings is similar to wearing earrings or bracelets. They have reported that the police are informing men who wear the genital jewelry that they are in violation of city codes governing being undressed in public.
“Men have been told they will be arrested on the spot if they are wearing a cock ring,” said Mitch Hightower, a nudist who runs a website about public nudity and organizes a yearly Nude In at the Castro’s Jane Warner Plaza the Saturday of Folsom Street Fair weekend. “Since Pride people have reported to me of being hassled for wearing cock rings. I don’t wear one but I have observed” men being approached by the police.
Hightower, a gay man who lives in Miraloma Park, said he recently changed his views about the wearing of cock rings in public. He did so after he conducted a poll on his site that found the majority of respondents consider cock rings akin to jewelry.
“So I feel comfortable subscribing to that belief system,” said Hightower, the webmaster for the 12-year-old site http://www.bucknakedinpublic.com.
Technically, under current San Francisco rules, as long as a person is not visibly sexually aroused, they can be nude in public. But when men have on cock rings, whose primary purpose is to help wearers retain an erection, some city leaders maintain they are crossing the line into public indecency and are in violation of the law.
“There is a difference between being naked and making a political statement and then wearing jewelry that brings attention to one’s genital areas,” said gay San Francisco police Sergeant Chuck Limbert, the LGBT liaison at Mission Station, whose jurisdiction covers the Castro neighborhood. “We have been getting a lot more pressure from the community to do some enforcement in regard to the public nudity and what is going on up there.” READ ON
here is a link to the follow up story and comments: http://ebar.com/news/article.php?sec=news&article=68064
I’ve always been under the impression that cock rings were considered formal attire – so if you’re wearing one, how can you be nude?
San Francisco enjoys alot more freedom that the rest of the country… is it too much to just not wear cock rings when enjoying that freedom of being nude? I agree it is akin to jewelry but if we are seeking tolerance (and getting it), shouldn’t we be tolerant of others who may be offended? You have the right to be nude in public… shouldn’t that be enough? For now? 🙂 Minds can be changed later once the public sees that we are not unreasonable. You gotta give a little to get more down the line.
Folks said the same thing about gay men holding hands or kissing in public. Depending on the tolerance and understanding of others is thin gruel.
they’re all fascists, plain and simple, trying to dictate everyone’s lives around them. they must be stopped early and often.
What’s next? No Prince Albert’s? I tend to belive PA’s tend to “draw attention to that area” much more than a cock ring does. But hey, maybe that’s just me.