Go Topless for Equality

By Prescott Carlson in Arts & Entertainment on Aug 21, 2010 9:00PM

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Image via GoTopless
For the third year in a row, GoTopless.org (NSFW*) is having a "Go Topless Day" tomorrow, August 22, to protest the injustice that while men can walk around with their hairy man-boobs flopping around, women have to cover up. Their message is, "As long as men can go topless, women should have the same constitutional right or men should also be forced to wear something that hides their chests." The group is encouraging women nationwide to bare all, and men can join along in solidarity by donning bras or bikini tops. Locally, the protest will happen amongst the beach volleyball players and rollerbladers at North Avenue Beach.

While discussing the protest around the Chicagoist water cooler, Chicagoista Michele quipped, "Obviously a man's idea." Indeed, Michele, and not just any man, GoTopless.org was founded by Claude Vorilhon: sports car journalist, race car driver and magazine owner, better known as Rael, leader of the Raelian Movement cult religion.

Raelism is a "UFO religion" that believes that life on Earth is the result of experiments by extraterrestrials. Rael founded the religion in 1974 after a supposed alien encounter of his own the year before. But the group is more widely known for its claim in 2002 that the company Rael founded, Clonaid, had produced a human clone, Eve. The event garnered tons of publicity, but interest waned when independent proof was never produced.

So time for plan B, and what gets more media attention in the United States than human cloning? Bewbies, of course! If you want to stand up for a woman's right to be topless, strip down and head over to North Avenue Beach tomorrow -- just don't be surprised if you're handed a few kooky pamphlets when you get there.

*The irony of flagging a website slamming Puritanical views of the naked female breast "NSFW" is not lost on us.