When I tell people about this they think I am crazy. This is how far modern religious Puritan morality has pushed into the public. We went from times when boys being nude was OK, fun, and pretty normal to now just the idea of young people seeing a nude statue like David of Michelangelo got a Florida principle fired. How ridiculous has this become. Seeing a nude human, even one in a painting or work of art, will destroy a child? Will cause the downfall of a nation? There are states trying to outlaw watching porn for adults because the religious people have to regulate all behavior, even adults private consensual behavior. It is time to stop this march of the moral vice police / the US Christian Taliban. I know I have enjoyed the times in my life I was able to swim nude, in public and private. I think growing up if more boys had been forced to be nude for more than a quick run under the locker shower, they may have been less self-conscious about themselves and their development. I know it surprised me when I went to church boarding school that the male dorm showers were just a large room with many shower heads on the wall but most of the kids except a few were OK with it. In fact me and my friends often planned our mornings to shower together. And it was not a sexual thing, it was the normal start of the day when we first got together. Hugs
A brief history of naked swimming in American schools. Sorry about the misspellings. Part 2- • Naked Swimming In… Part 3- • Naked Swimming In…
2 thoughts on “Naked Swimming In School Pt. 1 / Pt. 2 / Pt. 3”
Hi Scottie; I read this article you posted some time ago and was interested to see the comments. I was surprised to see no one comment, especially as some of us who come to your blog are old enough to – if not have swum nude as noted above, definitely old enough to have seen the changes in our culture around nude swimming and nudism in general.
I remember when I went into Jr. High and we found out that we would be changing for p.e. and showering nude. Yes, it was scary, yes it was new, yes I was uncomfortable, and yes it was likely the first time some had the opportunity to understand ourselves in scope with other boys of similar age.
The FKK movement that swept Europe and bled over to America in lesser degree spoke clearly how our bodies are not something to be ashamed about or hidden. Another issue of the FKK movement is that being nude does not make a person more vulnerable because vulnerability that can be armored against by a cotton blend is, well…. No, it is because they wanted people to be free from the feeling of needing to be covered to be decent, or feeling vulnerable – I mean, “naked” is synonymous with both words all too often. Even more so, think on the statement “clothes makes the man”. No, clothing only presents a first impression, a presumption, and as Donald just showed us again and again and again, an expensive suit does not change the mind and heart behind the cloth, nor does a priest’s, it only sets others up when the presumption and the facts come together.
I was really disappointed that this topic didn’t gather a greater comment because it is truly indicative of many of the issues we see now. It definitely talks about how culture norms change over time. It definitely talks about how people see themselves – their personal confidence, how they see themselves and how they see themselves in relation to others, etc. It talks about how kids grow up maybe never seeing how boys and girls are different. It talks about how the concept of sex is not necessarily synonymous with nudity.
To say again, I see this as hugely indicative of the manner in which our culture has changed. There was a time when nude swimming was met with a shrug of the shoulder. And, as the video mentioned, now it would be unthinkable and even jailable. Ray Stevens wrote a song about The Streak – a humorous, laughable, juvenile stunt – it’s now a felony!
This was a good post choice, Scottie. I hope others will chime in on this. I also hope that others will open up and see how this is so evidential of how we somehow find ourselves declaring something as written in stone when in fact it is a recent fad.
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Hello Randy. Great comment. You summed up the changes in our society very well. How much effort the fundamentalist religious right has put into forcing the public and society into a repressive fear of our own bodies. Hugs