Naked on the Beach

451px-Fire_Island_Nude_BeachNew Yorkers fond of nude, or even semi-nude, sunbathing, should take care this summer.  

Here is an excerpt of my commentary in the (Albany, NY) Times- Union:

A confluence of two political surges could prove treacherous. First, there is a growing government intolerance for nude sunbathing. For example, Fire Island National Seashore recently announced the park service would begin enforcing the state law prohibiting “exposure of a person.” While recognizing that certain beaches had long been considered clothing optional, the park service stated that public nudity was incompatible with the park’s purposes. It explained that not everyone accepted nudity (“visitor use conflict”).

Second, the continuing concern with protecting children from adult nudity has led to legislative enthusiasm in classifying people as sex offenders. The New York Legislature this session entertained a bill that would create new crimes of “public lewdness,” including a felony that requires registration as a sex offender. People who expose their private parts in public where a child under 14 is “likely to present,” whether or not such a child is actually present, would commit the felony.

Read the rest of the commentary here.