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Women’s rights organization GoTopless alleges discrimination by Google Adsense

LAS VEGAS, Aug. 22 – Google Adsense, a program that pays third parties for displaying Google ads on their Web sites, is open to all comers.

“That is, unless Google makes an arbitrary decision that an applicant’s online content violates its terms,” said Nadine Gary, president of U.S.-based GoTopless. She said GoTopless is fighting for women’s rights to go publicly topless wherever men have the right to do so, on the basis of gender equality as guaranteed by the 14th Amendment.

“We tried to set up Adsense for our organization’s Web site [www.GoTopless.org], but Google rejected us,” Gary said. “Their representative said we’re displaying adult content, and that a Web site with illustrations or text unsuitable for young children is generally banned from participating in the Adsense program.”

But GoTopless’s Web site content is no more unsuitable for young children than the images and words they already see elsewhere in our society, according to Gary.

“Google is discriminating against us for displaying things children already see in places where female public toplessness is legal,” she explained. “Since 1992, women can legally go topless in New York State, as just one example. That means children already see women’s breasts in New York City streets and in many other places. Shame on Google for being behind the times and hindering an important women’s rights cause, which is also a civil rights cause!”

Gary said that although many GoTopless demonstrations are already scheduled in a number of U.S. cities for this coming Sunday, August 26, her organization may opt to add another location to protest Google’s decision.

“We picked August 26 so that our events will coincide with Women’s Equality Day, which commemorates Aug. 26, 1920, the day American women obtained the right to vote,” she explained. “But rigid Puritanism is clearly so pervasive in our society that it seems to have affected even companies that were once considered cutting-edge for their liberal orientation. Accordingly, although it’s short notice, we may add a GoTopless protest outside Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, to protest their discriminatory exclusion of our organization from Adsense.”

For a complete list of cities holding a Gotopless protest this Sunday, see http://gotopless.org/gotopless-day
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GoTopless in Paris on August 26th Topless or burqa for all?

Gotopless is getting ready for its fifth “topless” demonstration in the streets of New York, Los Angeles, Amsterdam, and many other cities around the world.

In Paris, it will be its second attempt… “Attempt” is the proper term because last year, the few women who wanted to celebrate “GoTopless” Day by walking topless in the streets of Paris ended up at the police station before being able to remove the slightest piece of clothing.

How is it possible for six women to be arrested at the exit of a subway station simply because they intended to go topless, like all the other men who were accompanying them?

Guilty of their intention, guilty of daring to be equal to men insofar as their freedom to expose their bodies, guilty of claiming a right that was acquired on August 26th 1789 – as the Declaration of Human Rights was being adopted – guilty of denouncing a blatant discrimination when it comes to certain men having far more voluminous breasts than some women – and it does not require anyone to be overly observant to notice this.

Some will argue that it is because men have a penis… So, does it mean that in order for women to expose their breasts in Paris today, they must have a very big clitoris between their legs?

The debate is clearly childish, no doubt. In 1900, bathing suits covered most of the women’s bodies and it was only in the 1910's that a few women dared to expose their knees.

Then, in 1946, a French engineer invented the bikini, and this created quite a stir on beaches a year later… Women in France went on to progressively expose their breasts on these same beaches, which led to the admiration of feminists overseas who were themselves dealing with an uncompromising Puritanism on their beaches.

What happened to these French progressive women of the 70's and 80's? Today, it is possible for women to walk topless in the streets of New York; Indeed, in 1992, women took the battle to the NY State Supreme Court to claim their right to be topless the same way men are, and they won.

Between Paris and New York, which city is now the most puritanical?

It goes without saying that behind these laws prohibiting women from showing their breasts lies an evident accumulation of religious taboos.

According to religious authorities, exposing a breast is considered a sexual act that can lead to a possible trauma in children who witness such lewdness. Knowing that many children are exposed to this indecency during the first months and years of their lives, it is difficult to imagine where this trauma could arise from, if not from the fear inflicted by these very religious authorities.

In the beginning of the past century, to expose an ankle was considered a sexually charged act. Eventually, these exposed ankles lost their “sex appeal,” and this means it is likely that breasts will go through the same process once they are no longer confined.

If women’s breasts are not admitted on the public stage to the same extent that men’s breasts are then it is time to impose the burqa for all. This way, in the absence of freedom, at least gender equality will prevail and be respected.

The Gotopless march, scheduled to take place in Paris on August 26th 2012 – anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights– is an important step toward true and genuine gender equality.

If men have the right to expose their bare chest in public there is no logical reason why women should be denied this right.

The Declaration of Human Rights was inspired by the Natural Law, which protects all human beings from any religious influence. The majority of people in France are atheists, and yet religious rites and taboos still dictate how people should dress and still determine French holidays… If you are fed up with such hypocrisy, do join us in Paris at Fontaine St- Michel on August 26th, at 1:30pm.

And even if you do not wish to go topless on that day, which is your most sacred right, come support those who will be there, breasts exposed, marching to claim their constitutional right to be “equal to men in all aspects.”

Michelle Obama's Nude Bust empowers women as they fight for topless rights

American Sculptor Daniel Edwards created the controversial, yet elegant bust of Michelle Obama, complete with bare bosom and Nerfertiti-esque hairstyle which accent Michelle's African roots.

GoTopless contacted the artist to ask him about this artwork currently displayed at the American National Gallery of Art in NYC because to GoTopless women, it trancends in different ways  women’s struggle for topless equal rights. 

Indeed, the First Lady of the United States is represented topless and free, empowered and dignified.  She also embodies the way her women ancestors must have proudly appeared before the religion of the colonizer covered them with shame. 

GT: Why were you inspired to represent the First Lady in her African ethnicity?
I wanted to make the example of Michelle Obama embracing her ethnicity, because I didn't think that it would ever happen in any visible, superficial way. I wanted to make the statement that she brings a new look to the Whitehouse, and that it is a historical event, and for the sake of of future scrutinization, she should not appear to be downplaying her ethnicity by courting comparisons to Jackie Kennedy just to appeal to white voters. Michelle Obama is the first example of a new era.

GT: Why did you sculpt the American Flag on her bosom?
The flag tattoo on Michelle's bosom was a commentary on the criticism Barack Obama was receiving, at that time, about the absence of a flag pin on his lapel. It was as though critics were questioning his commitment to America. The flag had escaped me that it might be perceived as a reference to slave branding, which doesn't change my thought about its original intent. Forcing Barack to wear a flag pin on his lapel (which he did, immediately following the criticism) was a form of branding. I think if it had occurred to me that the tattoo would be considered referential to slavery, I would have avoided it, which would have been a shame, I think.

GT: Why representing her as a nude bust?
The nude depiction of Michelle is a traditional convention of the language of sculpture.

GT: What do you think of the gender-equality National Gotopless Day, from a sculptor's point of view?
From a sculptor's point of view, gender-equality National Gotopless Day is an incredible opportunity to study the female form in a natural way! as a sculptor, I would love to be able to understand the diversity of forms of the breast not confined to the contrived setting of the artist's studio, or the intimate setting of the bedroom, or the sexual artificiality of an airbrushed/photoshopped image from a magazine. As a sculptor, I would love to see the different sizes of breasts, without preferences. I would love to see the effects of age and gravity on the form of the breast, and I would love to know the feeling of appreciation and/or empathy that could come from seeing that. I would like to be able to connect the forms of breasts to real women doing real things; to understand breasts as merely parts of the whole being.

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