...a load of bollocks to me.
A Suffolk man has discovered to his cost that the courts do not consider cycling naked through sleepy villages a "fun" activity for a Monday afternoon. Alexander Purser, 23, was driving through Acton, near Sudbury, on 7 June last year when he "spotted a community speed watch group in a lay-by on the side of the road". He went …
Doesn't really compute. Strangely enough, the man from the community speed trap gave the best answer. All really rather fully and nothing to get worries over. Everyone else screaming paedo and generally going into headless chicken mode. Do they really believe children haven't seen naked people before and do they really believe bringing them up in such a repressive way is good for them? My kids would kill themselves laughing and taking the p**s out of him.
Britain is really going backwards.
Many comments will no doubt focus on a village apparently stocked with Mary Whitehouse clones, so I'd like to say 'well done, that man' to Alexander.
If more people were willing to inject a bit of fun (risque or otherwise) into life, we'd all be a lot, lot happier. So, Alexander, have a pint on me.
Actually, since a little known update in the law a few years ago, being naked in public is tantamount to being a criminal act.
Basically, the law was changed so that you could be done for knowingly allowing your genitals to be on view so that it may cause alarm or distress. It doesn't matter is no-one is there to be alarmed or distressed or if anyone is, just that there could be.
I was a little surprised to see our local youth cricket team taking to the field completely stark bollock naked apart from pads/gloves etc. (no boxes though!)
There families around and no-one seemed to take any offence at all.
If you were to ask the children what they thought of the naked cyclist they would probably just find it funny. The only reason they would take offence is if an adult taught them to take offence - That's the real crime.
A friend of mine even goes as far as to say that "Prudery is child abuse with good intentions".
We have a wealth of evidence of this and a dearth of evidence to the contrary despite trying to find it. There is even a long-standing $1,000 reward for anyone who can write an essay making a valid case for harm to children from nudity. This has yet to be claimed.
Your reference to "alarm or distress" leads me to believe that you are referring to Section 66 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003:
A person commits an offence of 'Exposure' if-
(a)he intentionally exposes his genitals, and
(b)he intends that someone will see them and be caused alarm or distress.
Firstly note the "and" - it is not enough that he "exposes his genitals". The important part is his intentions. The prosecution has to prove that he intended to cause alarm or distress - yet his declared intention was to cause amusement and it would appear he succeeded, certainly as far as his intended audience of the community speed trap is concerned. Also we could look at the reactions of people commenting on this article, including those with children - these kinds of reactions are typical of the majority of people - 88% according to a survey we conducted to support our campaign to get the SOA worded as it is. That same survey showed that just 7% thought nudity was 'disgusting' and only 2% thought it 'criminal'. So has this guy been convicted based on the opinion of just 2% of the population?
A flasher who singles someone out, approaches them then exposes himself to them is doing so in order to get a reaction that he hopes will be that of alarm. S66 is aimed at that kind of offence and that is very different from a guy trying to create a bit of harmless fun. His intention was to amuse and the likelihood was that he would amuse, just as the World Naked Bike Ride does every year in cities all over the world. Sadly all it seems to take is one or two 'Mary Whitehouse' characters to give him a criminal record!
I am very puzzled by Stephen's comment. There is no statute or common law such as he refers to. He may be thinking of s.66 Sexual Offences Act 2003 but thanks to a lot of very hard work by British Naturism and others it only applies to aggressive nudity. There must be INTENT to cause alarm or distress.
The defendant believes that he was convicted despite winning the arguments in court but s.5 Public Order Act 1986 is an offence so poorly defined that it is a bigots charter. An appeal is being considered.
NB. We were not directly involved in the case but we have been corresponding with the defendant.
Malcolm Boura, British Naturism.
> wearing nothing more than his specs and a pair of trainers
He should have had his helmet on, too. Though the report contains a curious set of priorities:
"I saw a male on a bike with absolutely nothing on, not even a pair of socks" Hmmm, so that would've been OK, then - depending where the sock(s) were worn?
Is it just me or is the most disturbing thing about this is the fact people look at a naked cyclist and think "OH MY GOD IT'S A PEADO! HE'S OBVIOUSLY GOING TO RAPE 100 CHILDREN BEFORE LUNCH!"
How did they make the connection between a naked adult harmlessly cycling around and child molesting? Who actually thinks like that? What else makes them think of child abuse?
A tall skinny guy with a long beard ran naked throught the crowds with a burger in his hand shouting "Has anyone seen my pickles" nobody managed to stop laughing long enough to get offended and the few children who saw it were laughing the hardest.
Some people need to take the pole out of their ass and grow a sense of humour.
Quite funny - a good wheeze indeed - reminds me of some of the 'less than fully clad' antics that happened at Uni - thank heavens no one in Bath found that offensive - I am fairly sure I was served and ate a kebab naked from Marmaris just above the Puteney bridge weir!
On a more serious note whilst I think the fine was unnecessary I am SO glad they did not find a way to put this guy on the register.
"What is it about the naked human form that is so harmful to children?"
This is England. The majority of us still haven't got over the embarassment of having been born in bed with a (more or less) naked woman...
Paris becasue, well, it's compulsory for any post containing the words "naked" and "woman" in the same sentence...
Clearly none of you have been to Acton - the place is as dead as Dunwich. They were probably just so desperate to produce some news, any news, that they decided this was worth bothering with.
Wouldn't be too surprised if the parish council paid him to do this to get something remotely newsworthy happening there...
And sadly we are likely to start acquiring their rates of teenage pregnancy, if we carry on like this.
We have studied 14 different nations and shown a very strong correlation between prudish attitudes and high rates of teenage pregnancy, America having a rate that is 10 times that of Denmark at the other end of the scale. I'm sorry to say we are closer to America, having about half their rate at the moment, so 5 times that of Denmark. Interestingly Scotland is a little worse than England and their attitude to nudity is closer to America's than England's is. Need I say more?
The same Edinburgh where Lothian and Borders Police had a change of heart in 2004 and stated that anyone getting nude for any reason would be arrested for "outraging the public decency" after a tirade of whinging from politicians (big surprise), church groups and other religious loonies (big shock again), mothers groups (another shock there) and "community groups" (friends of mary whitehouse, so again a real shock...NOT)
Despite nudity per se not being illegal, up here in Scotland the police and the judiciary treat it as though it is (see naked rambler) and go out of their way to make sure the conviction sticks (asking if anyone within 3 miles is offended or has children, you know so the media can brand said naturist a pervert, see also recent news story about Fife police warning naturists not to go to any Fife beaches, unless they want to be pursued for indecent exposure (and likely a place on the sex offenders register for life as the naturist is suddenly found to have thousands of "dubious images" on their hard drive) (unlike those tricky cases which need investigation or might require an officer to face something even vaguely hazardous you know like yobs beating up a bystander as its "pure funny like for a laugh", where the police are unable to attend as they are suddenly awfully busy and short staffed and the earliest they could possibly attend is a week next tuesday)
What is really sickening, is that EVERY political party in Scotland might as well be lead by the church as they all parrot the same lines "Law regarding nudity too permissive" "Lock these weirdy nudeys up" "Must take the most cautious approach to protect "the children" " (even when said "children" are adolescents committing crimes including violent crimes) etc.
Frankly this entire island would have been greatly improved if the Soviets had invaded...at least they didn't freak out at the first sign of bare flesh. Plus the corruption level might actually drop......
... is probably rather more than the average penalty for a driver whose recklessness kills a pedestrian or cyclist ...
Perhaps the judge knows something we don't, and this character was driving dangerously before going home and pulling this stunt. In which case, we might call it moral justice through the back door.
You don't get to be a judge with a sense of justice intact. Mine's the shabby mac.
On holiday outside Colchester, Ca 1985, we walked footpaths near a field that contained a camp for, er, naturist families. Wandering along we passed about fifty, mostly young, with many children, coming the other way along the footpath. We never knew where they were going, perhaps to get some milk. Our children were surprised, intrigued, but in no way troubled.
Justice has ceased to be a question of stopping crime, and has shifted its focus to furthering a series of political agendas. The protection of 'vulnerable individuals' -which farcically includes anyone under 18, as well as violent mental-health sufferers- is one such moral panic. Most of ths stuff comes from the EU, and is another good reason for our getting out.
Round here we've had problems with youth gangs, and in one case these hoodlums were in the roadway, swearing their heads off, and baring their asses to passing traffic.Their parents were sent warning letters. No £500 costs, not even an arrest. It's almost like the caste system in India, if you are one of a favoured group you can get away with anything. But, if you're just Joe Public, woe betide that you put a foot out of line.
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