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The Opponents of Topfreedom in North America: Women, not Men

This article delves into the reasons why women, not men, are the main opponents of the topfreedom movement in North America. Personal insecurities, cultural stigmas, and legal barriers are explored.
 |  Scarlette Brooks  |  News
Opponents of Topfreedom in North America

Topfreedom refers to the legal and social movement advocating for women's right to be topless in public places, just as men are allowed. Despite the increasing popularity of this movement, the main opposition to it still remains women themselves, rather than men. The reason for this is rooted in several personal insecurities and other issues that women face in their daily lives.

One of the primary reasons why women are opposed to topfreedom is due to their insecurity about their bodies. Many women feel self-conscious about their bodies and feel that going topless in public would make them the center of attention, leading to feelings of shame and insecurity. This is especially true for women who have been previously discriminated against based on their body size, shape, or skin color. These women may feel that they are being further ostracized or stigmatized by going topless, leading them to feel anxious and self-conscious in public spaces. But it does not justify trying to prohibit other women from going topfree, in essence, women discriminate against women.

Another reason why women are opposed to topfreedom is due to the prevalence of sexual harassment and assault in public spaces. Many women feel that going topless in public places would make them more vulnerable to these types of crimes. They may feel that they would be more likely to be objectified or subjected to unwanted attention from men if they were to go topless. This fear is not unfounded, as research has shown that women who dress provocatively or expose more skin are more likely to be subjected to sexual harassment and assault. But there is also the time of adjustment, if more women expose their breasts, these become common and normalized to be seen in public.

Moreover, the cultural and social stigma surrounding women's bodies also plays a role in the opposition to topfreedom. Women who go topless in public spaces may be perceived as being immodest, promiscuous, or even unprofessional. This stigma is especially prevalent in conservative or religious communities, where women are often expected to cover up and behave modestly in public spaces. Women who go against these societal norms may face criticism, ridicule, or even violence by people who are supposed to be moral in their views but prefer violence.

In addition to these personal insecurities and cultural stigmas, there are also legal and institutional barriers that prevent women from going topless in public spaces. In many states in the US, there are laws that prohibit women from going topless in public places, even if they are just sunbathing or breastfeeding, Canada does not explicitly prohibit it, but it’s subject to having another woman offended which can lead to problems. These laws often result in the arrest and prosecution of women who go topless, leading to further stigma and discrimination. Additionally, there are also many public spaces, such as parks and beaches, that have policies that prohibit women from going topless, even if it is not explicitly written in law.

Despite these challenges, the topfreedom movement continues to gain momentum and support. Women who advocate for topfreedom argue that it is a matter of equality and freedom of expression. They argue that women should have the same rights and freedoms as men, including the right to be topless in public places. They also argue that topfreedom is a way to challenge and resist the cultural and social stigmas surrounding women's bodies and to reclaim women's bodies as their own.

In conclusion, the main opposition to topfreedom in North America is women themselves, due to a variety of personal insecurities, cultural stigmas and legal and institutional barriers. Despite these challenges, the topfreedom movement continues to grow and gain support, as women advocate for their right to be topless in public places, and challenge cultural and social stigmas surrounding women's bodies.

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