Author Topic: Council members uneasy about lifting topless ban on women  (Read 983 times)

Offline MA

  • Administrator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7270
    • View Profile
Council members uneasy about lifting topless ban on women
« Reply #1 on: 05-22-2018, 05:39pm »
Council members uneasy about lifting topless ban on women
Updated 5:25 PM; Posted 4:23 PM
By Terrence T. McDonald
The Jersey Journal

JERSEY CITY An attempt to rewrite the city's 1980s-era obscenity law received a somewhat chilly reception by members of the City Council at its Monday caucus, with council members expressing specific concern over the plan to lift the ban on women appearing topless in public.

The measure, which deals specifically with sex toys, female breasts and body parts in intimate areas, led to an unusually uncomfortable and occasionally giggly conversation among council members. Ward D Councilman Michael Yun was unwilling to utter the word "breasts," referencing them as "those things" instead.

The obscenity law rewrite was inspired by a local burlesque performer who canceled a March performance after the city said it might violate the current obscenity ordinance, which dates to 1982. The proposed replacement was spearheaded by Ward E Councilman James Solomon.

The changes include dropping all references to "obscene devices," i.e., sex toys (the current law limits personal possession of sex toys to five per person), and redefines "obscene" to reference a 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision largely considered the final word on what is and is not obscene.

But it appears reversing the topless ban is what makes some on the council the most nervous. The current law includes "female breasts" in the definition of naked, while the new version would include areas only below the waist.

"If somebody wanted to walk down the street topless, like, I have my granddaughter," said Councilman-at-large Daniel Rivera. "That would kind of like bother me a little bit."

New Jersey law is vague on whether it's legal for women to expose their breasts in public. State appellate judges have upheld local topless bans aimed at women.

Solomon attempted to persuade council members Monday night that lifting the topless ban would not lead to any drastic change. He noted that New York City has allowed women to go topless in public since 1992 and that city has since become "less seedy," not more. Read more

Jersey City, NJ Community Forums

Council members uneasy about lifting topless ban on women
« Reply #1 on: 05-22-2018, 05:39pm »