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Topeka City Council Bans Public Nudity

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KIMHIRO HOSHINO AFP/GETTY IMAGES
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Leaders in the Kansas capital city say it’s not OK to bare it all. The Topeka City Council has voted to ban public nudity. City Council members referenced an increased number of complaints about nudity recently. Councilman Jeff Coen pointed to an example on the busy shopping strip Wanamaker Road.

“I am a huge supporter of individual liberties, but jogging naked down Wanamaker disrupts the quality of life for the rest of us,” says Coen.

Webb Garlinghouse, who’s associated with a clothing-free camp outside Topeka, calls the ordinance “highly discriminatory.”

“There’s not a single law at any level of government that assures us that we will not be offended. We do have the right to turn our heads and not look,” says Garlinghouse.

The ban on nudity excludes breastfeeding mothers and children under five years old.

Stephen Koranda is Statehouse reporter for Kansas Public Radio and the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KCUR, KMUW, Kansas Public Radio and High Plains Radio covering health, education and politics.