BARE AND FREE
|Volume 23||Number 3, June 2011|
In this Issue
Days To Remember
Full-Moon Attendance Is Booming
Ron is our hero. We learned this spring that the official registration of Naturally FSU had somehow lapsed. It turns out they secretly changed the rules, and now require a cumbersome registration twice each year. Ron took charge, and ran the paperwork through all the bureaucratic hurdles, and everything is official once more.
The result has been more campus publicity for our Full-Moon Skinny-Dips. In May, we broke all records with 30 in attendance. Then in June, we broke that record with 42 people present. College-age people outnumbered their elders 3-to-1, and gender balance was good. In July, even a light rain could not dampen the discussion of 33 people in the lake--again mostly young.
With so much coming and going, keeping an accurate count is getting more difficult. So we decided to mount a solar lamp above the sign-in board, which was always too dark to see at night.
A dozen people of all ages went on our annual sinkhole tour. The new parking lot leading into the National Forest means that the place is suddenly overrun with hikers. We may have to rethink our route and schedule for next year.
Even though there was no national attempt to set a Guinness skinny-dipping world record, some of our young people wanted to stuff the lake with as many nude bodies as we could gather during our Open House on July 10. But the people who asked us to do it didn't show up, and we had a disappointing 26 present at 2:00. Still, about half of them were couples.
Florida Legislature Creates the New Crime of Teen Sexting by Paul LeValley
Until this spring, Florida had no law about teenagers sending nude pictures of themselves to their boyfriends, girlfriends, or other acquaintances. That has not prevented police officers in the schools from declaring that students would be prosecuted for child pornography and forced to register as sex offenders.
Those threats rang false on two counts. First, nude is not lewd; Florida law has long been clear about that. Secondly, child pornography laws exist to protect children from exploitation by unscrupulous adults; a person cannot exploit oneself. Ridiculous as they may be, child pornography cases were actually filed in a few cities. No convictions are known.
Most adults agree that sending such digital pictures is foolish because (a) teen romances are not stable and sometimes end in retaliation; and (b) career decisions still lie ahead, so a teenager does not yet know how much occupational security he or she may need. Fortunately, there is no law against stupidity; if there were, many politicians would be in trouble.
The new law was presented as a merciful act separating youthful foolishness from serious crime. It passed both houses unanimously. Half-a-dozen other states have passed similar regulations.
The law applies only to pictures sent electronically by one minor to another minor. (Teen couples need to be careful when one turns 18 before the other.) Keeping with established Florida law, the statute clearly states that the image must be nude AND harmful to minors--which is defined as something that "predominantly appeals to a prurient, shameful, or morbid interest." Just as state nudity laws don't always prevent ignorant policemen from filing charges that won't stand up in court, the new law only means that an innocently nude person can go to court and win.
Under the new law, the first offense is not recorded as a crime (though community service hours can be required). Getting caught a second time is a misdemeanor, and a third time becomes a felony. Warning: a plea bargain or withholding of adjudication adds to the count the same as a guilty plea; it is necessary to fight all false charges in court.
Unlike child pornography law, the minor recipient of such an unsolicited picture is not considered equally guilty.
The legislature also clarified an area of ambiguity concerning summer camps. From now on, anyone volunteering more than 10 hours a month in a youth camp or summer program (whether nude or clothed) must be fingerprinted, at a cost of $40 per person. The law does not state that people already cleared (such as schoolteachers) need to be fingerprinted again.
Volunteers Pitch In
Turnout was low for our annual clean-up on World Naked Gardening Day. And so the simpler tasks didn't get done for a while. But we still accomplished a lot. Bruce trimmed the Nature Trail. Paul cleared more underbrush along the east side of the lily pond. Steve assisted them both with the lawn mower. And Jim worked on tables. Jim has put a new top on our picnic table, and built a completely new serving table.
Working at it every weekend, Vicki has cleared the seaweed far beyond our swimming area. Lee has identified more trees on our Nature Trail. (Our Mystery Tree turns out to be a young Cherry Laurel.) A prospective new member chopped out a bunch of dead roots that could trip people. And some anonymous good souls picked up a lot of branches after a severe wind storm. This is a member-owned club, and so it is fitting that members pitch in wherever you see a need.
Our Wish List Grows Shorter
We have a swing set--something we have long wanted. Bruce helped fix it, Paul painted it, and Jim made some new seats. The kids have already learned that on a hot day, you throw a bucket of water on the slide if you don't want a scorched butt.
Hugh and Sue donated a fine old lawnmower for the nature trail and wooded areas. (It's been so hot and dry that most of the lawn hasn't grown this summer.) Jim gave us a grass sling and other tools. So if you feel like trimming up the place, feel free to go at it at any time.
With all these generous gifts, our wish list has gotten shorter. We could still use:
Always remember to sign in. No exceptions. If you camp overnight, please sign in both days.
Just lately, we have been picking up way too many cigarette butts--especially in the parking lot. We have plenty of ashtrays in the storage shed. Hint: They look a lot like tunafish cans.
In addition to serving on our board, Rick is now vice-president of the Florida Young Naturists. He helps co-ordinate events for those 18-30 all across the state. He is pictured twice in the newest issue of Nude & Natural.
Vicki is now our new webmaster and newsletter editor. The club thanks Jamie for seven years of dedication and bringing a new level of professionalism to our web site. Jamie also served as newsletter editor for nine years, and produced our first electronic version in 2002--a few years ahead of most nudist clubs.
We have copies for sale of the AANR park guide and the TNS world guide to nude beaches. The AANR book has gone out of print. Probably, neither one will ever be published again. So get them while you can.
Single men especially, remember the club in your will, or as the beneficiary of your life insurance. Talk with Paul if you have questions.