Cromey Online

The writings of author, therapist, and priest Robert Warren Cromey.

My Photo
Location: San Francisco, California, United States

Saturday, February 02, 2013

On Nudity in San Francisco

No public nudity is allowed in San Francisco starting February 1, 2013. Too bad. I never saw a naked body that was not beautiful, fat skinny hairy or hairless. Men with burn scars on their chests, women with one or two breasts removed were lovely. Human bodies come in all shapes and sizes and all are beautiful, if you really look at them with an admiring eye.
I walked up Castro Street the other day to the corner of Market. Ten men basked in the 70-degree heat wearing nothing else but a hat, sunglasses and shoes. They snapped pictures of each other and posed for tourists to photograph them. I had forgotten my camera.
A startling lithe young woman had red body paint over every inch of her naked body. An African-American woman with large breasts, belly and butt gave me a big smile. All she was wearing was necklace and earrings. They were having fun, showing off and enjoying the warm January day.
For sure, many respectable Americans and San Franciscan are shocked and uncomfortable seeing people nude and naked in public places. They will always pass laws trying to forbid the freedom of some who wish to doff their clothes in public. The idea that children will be offended or corrupted by seeing naked people is offered as a reason to prohibit public nudity. Some say it is undignified. Others say nakedness arouses sexual passions and corrupts the weak and the young. Sadly, some think the human body itself is sinful. Many people feel shame when they are seen naked or see others nude.
In the 1940s my mother, father, grandfather, brother and I lived in a railroad flat in the East New York section of Brooklyn, N.Y. There was one bathroom, a tub and no shower. I often saw the adults in the family nude or semi-nude scurrying in and out of the lone bathroom. They were not showing off but they were not trying to hide anything either. I had the usual amount of teen embarrassment about being nude. The male shower room in high school erased a lot of that.
As a Biblical Christian I see our bodies as gifts to us from God. Bodies are part of the creative order. Bodies are beautiful and to be admired. If some people wish to be nude in public I think they should have the right to be so. That most people want to stop public nudity is certainly their right.
I spent five months at Esalen Institute in Big Sur, CA. in 1969. At the hot springs baths people gathered for nude communal bathing. I saw and admired many men and women with no clothes on. They were all beautiful. Alan Ginsberg, Jerry Garcia and I once shared a tub.



Anonymous Patrick Monk.RN said...

Thank you Robert for always speaking your truth.
All love.
Pat Monk.

10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


1:57 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home