Nudists stand up to charges in court
Controversy surrounding public nudity in San Francisco continued to unfold this week as three “body freedom” activists faced charges in court stemming from protests earlier this year.
Nudists Gypsy Taub, George Davis and Woody Miller were found guilty of violating San Francisco’s public nudity law and released on time served.
The activists were arrested Feb. 27 while participating in a dance performance protest in Castro’s Harvey Milk Plaza.
Taub was also arraigned Tuesday on separate charges after being arrested March 22 while demonstrating naked in front of City Hall.
The Board of Supervisors outlawed public nudity except for parades in legislation that took effect Feb. 1 despite a series of protests including activists disrobing during a supervisor’s meeting.
In response to the citywide ban, activists have hosted a series of demonstrations in front of City Hall and in the Castro to protest what they consider a violation of their First Amendment rights.
Taub, originally from Russia, hosts her own public access show called My Naked Truth on channel 29 Saturday nights at 10 p.m. She said she takes her clothes off to fight for what she calls body freedom:
“The greatest thing about this country is not the financial opportunities, but the freedom of expression. That’s why I hate to see the First Amendment shredded in the most liberal city in America. If clothes were illegal I would be dressed.”
Along with the nude protests, activists have also taken to hosting a thong parade, which is legal under The City’s nudity ban.
The body freedom activists have taken aim at the author of the nudity ban, Supervisor Scott Wiener. They have decided to run one of their own against him in the next election, as George Davis declared his candidacy for District 8 Supervisor.
Davis told SFBay Wiener represents the 1 percent, not the 99 percent:
“He wants to turn this city into a warm Milwaukee.”
Wiener defended his public service record, saying that he has worked to improve public transit, affordable housing and city health care for transgender people:
“My record speaks for itself, and it’s a record of service to our broad and diverse community.”
Taub still awaits trial on charges from her arrest March 22 and faces up to one year in jail. The protestors are currently applying for a permit to host a nude parade June 20 near City Hall.