Log Cabin Chronicles

In Vermont: Nudity should not generate a big fuss, but it has

Reporter, The Chronicle
Barton, Vermont

POSTED: 06.27.08

WESTMORE, VT |The Westmore Selectmen have done an admirable job with a difficult situation. On Monday, the selectmen decided to table the proposed nudity ordinance because the town does not have the resources in place to enforce it.

This decision seems wise and it was made after plenty of chances for everyone to make plenty of comments, which they did.

We tend to sympathize with Ruth Gjessing here, who wishes that people could simply swim "in the altogether" without such a big fuss being made.

  • There are plenty of places to swim for those who really canŐt stand to see naked people.

  • And those who really want to swim at the south cove on Lake Willoughby are not forced to swim naked.

  • Clothing optional means wear your bathing suit if you want to.
It is not something that ought to generate a big fuss. But a big fuss has been made and canŐt be unmade.

Will that big fuss make things worse at the south cove?

It seems it might be already happening.

The town canŐt afford to hire law enforcement for the beach, but the state might need to get some law enforcement there at this point to prevent a disaster.

Plain old nudity never hurt anyone, but lewd behavior in public canŐt be tolerated, and threats against a group for its beliefs should never be accepted. Regular, visible law enforcement in the area would prevent some problems.

David Timson, who frequents the beach regularly, was recently threatened there by some people dressed in black leather with chains. Mr. Timson has crutches and had all his clothes on at the time.

Emotions are running strong right now. Neither side is going to drop this issue, but is it really up to the town of Westmore to resolve it?

The state opened this PandoraŐs box with its comments at a meeting in town last winter. The state ought to step in at this point.

Leave the nude beach as is, but letŐs take steps to keep it from becoming a crime scene please.


Copyright © 2008 Bethany Dunbar/Barton Chronicle/06.08