Last Updated on September 18, 2019
Following a ‘Free the Nipple’ campaign in Fort Collins, Colorado, feminists have won a victory allowing women–and girls as young as eleven–to be bare-breasted in public.
After a three-year lawsuit, activists have won a case where a topless ban from city law has been removed by Fort Collins City Council.
The removal of the law will allow girls as young as eleven to legally walk around the city topless, costing the city over $320,000 in fees.
According to Fox Denver 31:
The Coloradoan reported that Fort Collins City Council agreed Tuesday to remove language in the public nudity code that barred women and girls over age 10 from exposing their breasts in public.
City officials say the ban is expected to be removed Sept. 17.
Officials say a district court judge and a federal appeals court have ruled against the policy in the past two years.
City Council voted in May to stop defending the ordinance in court after spending about $322,000 on a three-year lawsuit.
Officials say the deadline to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court passed, so now the city cannot enforce a topless ban that only applies to women.
Andy McNulty is their attorney and says the law is an attack on equal rights.
“Any law that says, ‘Women are prohibited from,’ is unconstitutional and really just intolerable in a society that should treat women as equal to men,” said McNulty.
“Everybody should be able to be comfortable on a hot day and if that means taking their shirt of so be it. No matter how you look, you should have the same freedom at the person next to you. And it’s also about equality,” said Hoagland.
“They had been advocating for a while, trying to get the Fort Collins City Council to get rid of a female topless ban in Fort Collins. They’d been unsuccessful, and they wanted to see if we would be willing to represent them in a legal challenge to that ordinance,” said McNulty.
After the courts ruled in favor of nudity, the city appealed to the federal 10th Circuit of Appeals. That court also ruled in favor of topless women.
Fort Collins decided they were not going to try and win at the US Supreme Court.
On the ‘Free the Nipple’ movement, Pluralist adds:
Free the Nipple feminism
Spearheaded by feminists, the sex-positivity movement has gone well beyond combatting “slut shaming” to celebrating overt displays of female sexuality. And in the culture at large, celebrities such as twerk superstars Iggy Azalea and Cardi B exhort women to celebrate their raunchiness as a form of liberation and empowerment.
However, conservative critics have bemoaned the weakening of traditional gender norms, including female modesty. And some feminists have agreed, warning that their lascivious counterparts are playing into the hands of the patriarchy.
All six states in the 10th District – Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, Kansas and Oklahoma – will no longer be able to enforce bans on female toplessness, after the legal battle.