Go Topless Day
|Go Topless Day|
|Date(s)||Sunday nearest August 26 (Women's Equality Day)|
2008 (first observance)
The annual event was established in 2007 by American organization "Go Topless". To promote gender equality, the event encourages women to go topless in public, and men to cover their chests by wearing brassieres or bikinis.
The event is sponsored by GoTopless, a group formed in the American state of Nevada by former French auto-racing journalist Claude Vorilhon, currently known as Rael, spiritual leader of the Raelian Movement, a UFO religion. GoTopless has supported events and chapters in other countries.
The 2011 Go Topless Day in the United States was held on August 24. Protesters, both men and women, participated in rallies held in twelve U.S. states, including California, New York and North Carolina. Women who participated in the celebration used either fake latex nipples or pasties to cover their nipples and avoid arrest due to laws in some states that prohibit women from showing their areola and nipples in public. The protesters displayed signs that read "Men and women have nipples. Why should women hide theirs?" and "Equal topless rights for all or none". Many men who joined the demonstration wore bras and bikinis to protest against the double standard where men are allowed to go barechested, but women are prohibited to go topless in public.
In Canada, Go Topless Day was celebrated for the first time in 2011. The 2011 Canadian Go Topless Day rally was held in Toronto, Ontario, on August 28. Nearly twenty women went topless going from Queen Street East to Kew Beach on a pick-up truck sounding loudly the song "Revolution" by The Beatles. According to Diane Brisbois, the spokesperson for Go Topless Canada, "This is not a beauty contest. It is about freedom. We have support; there are many men who come to our events too." As reported by CBC online: "Women in Canada won the right to bare their breasts in public in 1996 when the Ontario Court of Appeal overturned the 1991 conviction of Gwen Jacobs, saying "there was nothing degrading or dehumanizing" about her decision to take off her shirt in public."
- Winn, Pete (August 18, 2010). "Raelians Threaten Legal Action to Secure Women's Constitutional Right to Go Topless". CNSNews.com. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- Awesome, Barb (August 21, 2011). "It's National GoTopless Day!". ChicagoNow. Retrieved April 3, 2012.
- "Topless Protest to Be Held in Middle of Air And Water Show". CBS News. August 19, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- "2012 Go Topless Day". GoTopless.org. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- Yuen, Jenny (August 28, 2011). "Topless Protest in T.O.". Toronto Sun. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- Hume, Jessica (August 27, 2011). "Where and When You Can Go Topless in Ontario, and What It Has to Do with UFOs". National Post. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- "Protests Demand Equal Topless Rights". United Press International. August 22, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- Ndikubwayezu, Gilbert (August 25, 2011). "Group Denied Permit to March Topless". Toronto Star. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- "Babes Take Age-Old Prejudice Off Their Chests". India Today. August 25, 2009. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- Masters, Dave (August 23, 2011). "Women Strip for 'Go Topless Day'". The Sun. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- "Women in US Go Bare-Chested for 'Go Topless Day'". The Times of India. August 24, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- "Protesters in US Celebrate 'Go Topless Day' for Women's Equal Rights". Newstrack India. Asian News International. August 23, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
- gotopless.org, the event's official website