This cartoon - found on the Internet at Clothesfree.com is, in my opinion, a perfect way to introduce the idea that women should not be forced to cover their breasts in any situation where a man is allowed to not wear a shirt. TERA (Topfree Equal Rights Association) at www.tera.ca, is the premier web site for information pertaining to women's topfreedom that I have been able to find.
There are a number of states in the US and cities in Canada that legally allow women to go topfree anyplace a man legally can. New York State is the prime example. It took a group of women to push the envelope and risk being arrested to get it to and through the courts before the laws were changed to allow women to be topfree.
While I understand that the law may not state that it is legal for women to go topfree, it does not prohibit it. Supposedly then, a woman could be arrested if the police decide they want to do that and the woman will have to take it to court. I am not going to absolutely state this is true as I have read several different thoughts on this, but it is something to consider.
My question is, "What is the big deal?" Most laws that prohibit nudity in public state that nudity is prohibited when it is done within a sexual or lewd context. In Kansas the law that covers nudity is:
"KSA 21-3508, Lewd And Lascivious Behavior. 1. Lewd and lascivious behavior is: (b) the exposure of a sex organ in a public place, or in the presence of a person who is not the spouse of the offender and who has not consented thereto, with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desires of the offender or another."
So how does this even affect women being topfree? Well, unfortunately, the people of Kansas as well as many other states have a background wherein they were raised with the mantra that nudity equals sex. Therefore any part of the body not normally covered by clothing becomes sexual when it is uncovered.
In the early 1900's a women could not show an ankle because it was considered sexual to do so. Men had to wear swimsuits with a shirt or they were arrested for sexual misconduct. We see that things have changed a lot over the years and hopefully the idea of a woman's breasts being any more sexual than a man's will also go the way of the ankle-length skirts. Breasts do not, by the way, have anything to do with the reproductive part of our lives, but are merely a way to nourish the child of the species. So therefore they should not be covered under any sexual misconduct laws anyway.
Just my 2 cents worth.