AUTHOR’S NOTE: This will be my final blog post for the year 2015. I wish everyone a safe and happy 2016!
In the New Hampshire House of Representatives, a legislative chamber that has 400 seats and serves as the lower house of the state legislature of a state with slightly over 1.3 million people, you’re bound to find some interesting people serving as state legislators. One such interesting person is New Hampshire State Representative Amanda Bouldin (D-Manchester), who has earned national attention for criticizing a sexist Republican-backed bill that would prohibit women from going topless in public in New Hampshire:
Under current New Hampshire state law, both men and women may expose their nipples as they so please. Some Republicans want to change that. A recently proposed bill, sponsored exclusively by Republican men, would make it illegal for a woman to “purposely expos[e] the areola or nipple of her breast or breasts in a public place.” (The bill makes an exception for breastfeeding.) Men would still be permitted to expose their nipples in public with impunity.
In case you’re wondering what the areola is, it’s a donut-shaped area of skin immediately around each human nipple that is of a different color than most or all of the rest of a person’s skin.
Not surprisingly, Bouldin was not one bit happy about the hypocritical standard of banning women from exposing their breasts in public, while continuing to allow men to do so. So, she posted her opinion on Facebook, and at least two Republican state legislators responded with vile, sexist remarks.
One of the sexist Republican state legislators who confronted Bouldin online is Josh Moore (R-Merrimack), who essentially encouraged sexual assault:
…If it’s a woman’s natural inclination to pull her nipple out in public and you support that, than (sic) you should have no problem with a mans (sic) inclination to stare at it and grab it…
Grabbing a woman’s breasts without her consent is sexual assault, which is a criminal offense in every jurisdiction in the United States and something that nobody should encourage.
The other was Al Baldasaro (R-Londonderry), who essentially called Bouldin’s nipples ugly:
Amanada (sic), No disrespect, but your nipple would be the last one I would want to see…
If you’re calling a woman, or any part of her, ugly, you’re intending disrespect.
If Amanda Bouldin wants to go topless in public, that should be her choice and not anyone else’s. If Amanda Bouldin wants to wear a shirt, blouse, jacket, coat, or other type of top in public, that should be her choice and not anyone else’s. It’s worth noting that the sexist mindset of those Republicans isn’t all that different from the sexist mindset of Islamic fundamentalist men who think that women should be forced to wear clothing that completely covers their face. I’m glad that people like Amanda Bouldin are standing up and speaking out against sexist legislation like the New Hampshire Nipple Bill.
If you want to thank Ms. Bouldin for speaking out against the sexist hypocrisy in the New Hampshire Nipple Bill, here’s her Twitter page. Please be respectful to her!