Moffitt proposes ban on public female toplessness

Ava DeShenelle, one of the attendees at 2012’s Go Topless rally. Photo by Max Cooper

Buncombe Rep. Tim Moffitt has introduced legislation to add public female toplessness to behavior prohibited by the state’s indecent exposure laws.

The proposal would add that “for the purposes of this section, the term ‘private parts’ means external organs of sex and of excretion, including the nipple, or any portion of the areola, of the human female breast” to the state’s law, making exposure a misdemeanor. Davidson County Rep. Rayne Brown, also a Republican, is co-sponsoring the bill with Moffitt.

The law has a specific exemption for breastfeeding, but would make the topless rallies like the ones Asheville has seen for the past two years illegal.

Currently, no state or local laws prohibit female toplessness. Before last year’s rally, Mayor Terry Bellamy and all members of Asheville City Council signed a letter asking people to avoid the event and declared their intent to seek state legislation “that will clarify the law and allow Asheville and other communities in North Carolina to respond more effectively.”


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9 thoughts on “Moffitt proposes ban on public female toplessness

  1. JPostlet

    Because there are clearly no current pressing local issues more important than this one…

  2. Chet


  3. RavenRavinoff

    I for one would like to know how Moffitt’s proposed legislation defines a ‘woman’. At what age do nipples & areolas become offensive?

    Are 5 year olds allowed to go topless? 7? 10? 12? 14? 16? 17? Or is the female gender required to stay covered from birth?

    How about women who’ve had double mastectomies? Does Tim Moffitt & his Big Gov’t cronies demand they cover themselves?

    Or is it solely nipples and areolas that are offensive? What if those are covered w/ pasties? Is side boob allowed or illegal?

    I love how the GOP says they’re for ‘less government’ yet only seem to want the government to stay out of the way of (straight) men & corporations.

  4. Dionysis

    “I love how the GOP says they’re for ‘less government’ yet only seem to want the government to stay out of the way of (straight) men & corporations.”

    Yep, this hypocrisy has characterized Republicans for a while now. Always braying about “small government” and “individual liberties yet will consistently push nonsense like this, completely contrary to their PR bilge.

  5. Tim


    “Boobs in Raleigh can’t stand the competition in Asheville”

    Film at 11:00……………….

  6. Meiling Dai

    Rep. Moffitt has the courage to propose a bill that addresses the concerns of the Asheville City Council expressed during the Topless Rally this past year. The City Council did not approve of the rally, but could not stop it because there is “no state law” forbidding topless displays.
    If these rallies continue, think of the negative effect they will have on tourism and local business, and the reputation Asheville will gain as the topless city of the nation. What about the effect these rallies will have on children and their self-concepts?

  7. Pete Kaliner

    I notice how nobody has caught the fact that the Asheville City Council (hardly a right-wing bunch) asked the State for this “clarification.”

    It seems the progressives on Council are the prudes, then?

  8. Dionysis

    1. It was only a matter of time before someone came out and defended Moffitt’s pro Nanny Government effort as being ‘for the children’ (isn’t it always?).

    2. The facade of the faux progressives came off some time ago, so City Counsel will of course support this attack on free expression.

  9. infinitybbc

    in response to this article and those comments which followed…

    this issue is not one of so called “political sides”. this issue is not about anyone being adverse to the beauty of God’s creation of the human body, or parts of the human body (specifically breasts or nipples). this is merely an issue regarding acceptable as PUBLIC behavior, as opposed to PRIVATE behavior. anyone with common sense ought to understand that what is done in PRIVATE is certainly not always acceptable in PUBLIC. but for those who do not seem to get this, i will again further elaborate.

    women running around topless in PUBLIC presents some issues. first of all, why don’t the proponents of public female toplessness still not understand that it’s simply not culturally accepted in America? heck, it’s not culturally accepted within most of the nations within the entire world! why don’t they further consider the rights of others to frequent public places without having to see nudity when they prefer not to. in case some folks haven’t thought about it, there’s a reason why adult entertainment venues don’t have windows.

    BTW, in case some folks aren’t aware, even within the Red Light District in Amsterdam

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