In a move certain to slow down the Free the Nipple movement, the Supreme Court of the US refused to take up a case challenging a New Hampshire city ordinance banning public toplessness.
Given that the Supreme Court is the last court of refuge for challenging laws in the United States, those wishing to see a legal opinion supporting toplessness will have to wait either for a new balance in the Supreme Court or a new approach to challenging the law.
Supreme Court won't consider topless bans
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court said Monday that it will not take up a challenge to a New Hampshire city ordinance banning women from appearing topless in public.
A group with the motto "Free The Nipple" argued that the law violates the Constitution by treating men and women differently.
The legal dispute began in 2016 when Ginger Pierro did her yoga exercises topless at a lakeside beach in Laconia, New Hampshire, and was arrested for violating the city ordinance banning public nudity. It banned, among other things, "the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering any part of the nipple."
Three days later two other women, Heidi Lilley and Kia Sinclair, went to the same beach, appearing topless to protest the arrest. They, too, were charged with violating the nudity law.
All three challenged their convictions, arguing that topless bans are discriminatory because men can appear in public without their shirts. The bans also further the "sexualized objectification of women," according to their legal brief.
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