02-Sep-2014,
in Press Releases

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Seeking equal topless rights, GoTopless protests lifeguard’s command that a 3-year-old cover her chest at a public pool

MONTREAL, Sept 2 – Days after the 7th annual GoTopless Day raised public awareness of equal topless rights, a lifeguard at a Montreal, Canada public pool ordered a 3-year old girl to wear a top. If she didn’t comply, he said, the toddler and her mother, Veronique Shapiro, would have to leave immediately.

“I’m shocked,” said Sylvie Chabot, Raelian guide and spokesperson for GoTopless-Canada. “The lifeguard’s reprimanding order was discriminatory and reprehensible. It will affect this child for the rest of her life!"

Chabot said blatant gender discrimination about topless rights occurring at such an early age greatly impairs a girl’s psychological development.

“It’s the equivalent of imposing a burka on her,” Chabot said. “Were topless toddler boys at the pool told to cover their chests?” Of course not!”

Chabot reflected that this 3-year old had absorbed a painful lesson: that her chest must be hidden because it’s somehow shameful.

“Yet a boy’s chest, which looks absolutely identical at that age, isn’t considered shameful at all,” Chabot said. “What an outrageous double standard! The imprint of this shaming experience will have devastating consequences for the girl’s body image and feeling of self-worth.”

She added that boys’ minds were also impacted by the pool incident.

“They saw a girl forced to cover up on top and realized the directive didn’t apply to them,” she explained. “They naturally concluded that the male gender is privileged and superior to females. What’s more, topless gender discrimination fosters an obsession with the forbidden female chest that might trigger violent, unbalanced sexual behavior later in life.”

“Free your breasts, free your mind,” is GoTopless’s motto.

“Prevention of pedophilia is often mentioned as a reason for forcing girls to hide their chests,” Chabot said. “But it’s outrageous to use the behavior of a few sick people to justify topless discrimination. Remember, pedophilia also occurs against boys. It’s a crime that must be punished, but everyone is still entitled to equal gender rights.”

Chabot said GoTopless is asking former Canadian First Lady Margaret Trudeau and psychologist Catherine Pinhas Mulcair, wife of Canadian Opposition leader Tom Mulcair, for their support.
“We wrote to them, urging them to pressure the Harper government to ensure that the Canadian Constitution is upheld regarding women’s rights,” Chabot said.
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01-Sep-2014,
in Misc

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Italian Education Minister, Stephania Giannini teaches a powerful lesson in women's topless rights

VERONA, Sept 1 - "I warmly congratulate Italy's Minister of Education, Stefania Giannini for her recent public topless appearance on an Italian beach”, said Monica Morghen, Italian leader of GoTopless, a women's organization that claims women's equal right to go bare-chested in public wherever men have that right.
The minister of Education taught everyone a lesson with the candor in which she reacted to the paparazzi photographing her exposed chest. She reacted naturally as a topless man would have, unworried about the consequences her going topless in public would have on her political career as head of the Ministry of Education.

"To her, going topless was obviously a non-event, and that is exactly what GoTopless is looking to achieve not only on the beach but everywhere in Italy." Monica Morghen said.

She added: “our women's organization inspired by Rael, spiritual leader of the Raelian Movement, has the goal of promoting true equality between men and women.”

“Though it is legal for women to be topless on public beaches in Italy, we are still far from seeing
topless gender equality fully applied in our country”, Morghen explained.

“In public pools and parks, or on the streets while jogging, men are allowed to show their bare chest while women would be convicted of indecent exposure for the same act. How can the female breasts be considered indecent when it is par excellence the symbol of beauty, life and nourishment in all the art museums of our nation?

The Italian mentality proves once again to be negatively influenced by catholic morals causing blunt discrimination in the Italian legislature.

In the 21st century, Italians need not be the victims of such archaic values that instil nothing but
taboos, fears and guilt among people.

Some may regard standing for topless equality as trivial but it is far from the truth. Demanding gender equality at all levels is fundamental to the dignity of all citizens. Treating everyone with absolute parity is the way to non-violence.

Additionally, when we strip off all that separates us from our environment, we are totally true and we can better perceive our oneness with everything, feeling no separation with the living beings sharing the planet. And then, we naturally develop a peaceful and non-violent attitude”, Morghen added. “For this reason, I consider the practice of going topless not only a socially revolutionary act, but also a deeply spiritual one, capable of strengthening the peace in the world.”
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01-Sep-2014,
in Misc

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Denver, CO GoTopless participants rightfully stand up to police over their topless rights.

By Matthew Wilson
GoTopless Day falls on the Sunday closest to the anniversary of women winning the right to vote in America. Events are held in order to promote topless equality. Events occur in multiple cities across the USA, so we decided to independently hold one of our own here in Denver.

We all met and lounged a bit in Denver's Civic Center Park. Eventually we grew to around 12 women and 8 men, enjoying mutual respect and appreciation without objectification. Some of the men even wore bodypainted or actual bikini tops to show their solidarity. One of the guys, upon realizing how uncomfortable the tops were, painted "This Thing Sucks!" beneath his top.

There was a bicycling event going on, highly publicized, so it was very populated. Though we exhibited no lewd or sexual behavior, we obviously weren't surprised that it didn't take long for law enforcement to appear and inquire about our purposes.

We were very peaceful and explained about GoTopless Day and related how Colorado has no state law against female toplessness, and that we weren't breaking any local ordinances. Soon, a member of the police department who claimed to be a public relations liaison appeared. He expressed some moral condemnation but admitted that there were no laws against female toplessness in Denver. He did state that the bicycle event was held by permit for the day, and that if the organizers complained, we'd be asked to leave.

We walked the area for about an hour, receiving many startled looks but an amazing amount of appreciation from attendees (and not just because of "Wow, Boobs!"). Many men and women told us they felt the taboo against topless women was unfair. Though many women expressed how they wished they could join us, eventually (as expected), complaints were made to the organizers and forwarded to the officers, so we left peacefully and went for a walk down the 16th Street Mall.

The 16th Street Mall is always one of the busiest sections of Denver, full of locals and tourists; today was no exception. Smiling and waving, allowing photo opportunities when requested of us, we made quite a favorable impression on onlookers; we received many cheers and comments of support. Members of the public (including females) stripped off their tops and joined our stroll.

A female police officer walking her beat noticed us and asked the women to cover up. We politely related how we'd been assured by previous officers that we weren't breaking any of Denver's local ordinances. The officer said she'd recently been to a Vice class where she'd learned that it was illegal. She was at the end of her shift, so she called backup and handed it over to them.

Since a crowd was forming at that point, many officers arrived on site. A very amicable officer became the primary. He also was convinced that we were in error, and he said that if the ladies didn't cover up, they'd be ticketed. We knew our right to be informed of what laws we were to be cited under, so we politely asked him for the statute number.

He agreed to find out for us. He made multiple phone calls, including to the original lady officer, but nobody could tell him the statute. Eventually, he received confirmation that no laws were being broken. We cheered and went on our way. All in all, it was a wonderful experience!

We know that we'll possibly receive some ridicule in the news media, but also hope that our appearance initiates a deeper conversation. It took much courage for those in our group to make such a public statement. We know the taboos; we understood that there'd be those who'd choose shallow thinking over depth and react in juvenile manners. We braved objectification and condemnation, knowing that men once faced the very same thing when male toplessness was illegal in the US years ago.

Times are changing. It's the hiding of women's breasts that make them a "forbidden fruit". More and more cities across our nation are embracing equality, where female toplessness is accepted in the same situations and contexts as men's. Eventually, we'll actually achieve the equality that America proudly boasts.
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