POLITICS

Women running around topless to celebrate equality is a little excessive, no?

Theresa Edwards
Author
Theresa Edwards
Women running around topless to celebrate equality is a little excessive, no?

Have you ever heard of hundreds of women, with nothing on from the waist up, marching alongside some like-minded dudes with pasties or bras on? On International Go Topless Day, women all around the world bare their breasts in cities that won’t arrest them for doing so to point out that it’s a little bonkers that there are still plenty of cities that would.

If you feel like the solemnities of Women’s Equality Day might be better observed without breast-shaped balloons, I wouldn’t necessarily blame you. I mean, I don’t think there’s ever an occasion that doesn’t call for floating boobie balloons, but it takes all kinds to make the world go ‘round. In fact, unless you were a total tool about it, I would even hear you out if you called the whole thing a silly spectacle, even if I didn’t agree with you.

Because even though I think that equal means equal, there’s absolutely no getting around the fact that Go Topless Day was founded by an activist group called GoTopless. And there’s no escaping the fact that GoTopless was founded by a French sports-car journalist who goes by Raël, but who was born Claude Vorilhon. Why am I telling you this? I’m just going to let Wikipedia do this for me, you guys:

“Claude Vorilhon — who was at the time a professional test driver and automobile journalist for the Autopop Magazine — had a first meeting with an extraterrestrial humanoid, an Eloha (plural: Elohim), who landed a UFO within an inactive volcano called Puy de Lassolas near the capital of Auvergne, France (Clermont-Ferrand).”

It is really hard to focus on the finer philosophical points of which breasts are appropriate for public consumption (the ones with babies on them? Classy burlesque ones? Ones painted by Very Serious Artists during the Renaissance? Your dad’s, in all of their fuzzy, droopy glory on Myrtle Beach?) once you’ve heard “inactive volcano” and “extraterrestrial humanoid” in the same sentence. Personally, I don’t want to have to choose between whether breasts or aliens are cooler.

In all seriousness, I know that it’s tempting to write off the validity of something like breast-related gender equality when it comes wrapped in an objectively kooky bow. But couldn’t you say the same thing about pretty much anything? I mean, to an atheist like me, the concept of parthenogenesis or sticks that turn into rad snakes sounds absolutely absurd. But why throw out the whole “love your neighbor” baby with all that “water-into-wine” bathwater?

Luckily, we all live in a country where we can believe in sex-positive aliens or immortal Jewish guys, or nothing at all. In theory, we’re allowed to do all of that stuff because we don’t make laws for one group of people that could reasonably apply to another but doesn’t. We work on getting rid of some of the dumber laws we already have that do that very thing. And that’s what GoTopless parades are supposed to be about. Circle your calendars for August 26 next year!