Havertown native Moira Johnston, 29, a 2001 graduate of Haverford Senior High School, and her (droopy) tits have been on a crusade in New York City this summer and she’s starting to draw attention from the national media.
[via The Daily Beast]
Moira Johnston and her breasts have become pseudo-celebrities in downtown Manhattan this summer. They’ve been covered extensively in local media outlets. They’ve reassured Big Apple denizens that New York City is indeed the greatest place on earth. They’ve even become celebrities to celebrities. Several weeks ago, Michael Lohan, father of actress Lindsay Lohan,tweeted a picture of a UPS man reacting to Johnston’s toplessness, which Lindsaysubsequently retweeted to her four million followers.
And, what is her cause, you ask?
A self-described “Topless Activist”, Moira’s mission is to raise awareness of a little-known NY state law that permits women to be topless anywhere men can be topless. Apparently, it’s perfectly legal and has been since 1992. Who knew?
[via The Daily Beast]
It all started in January at a yoga studio in Manhattan, when Johnston was banished after she took her top off in class. Some of the other yogis complained to the owners about her bare breasts, but Johnston thought it unfair that men be allowed to go topless in Downward Dog while women are forced to keep their mammaries in their Lululemon tanks.
Johnston wasn’t, in fact, committing a crime.
It’s been legal for a woman to go topless in public [in New York State] since the 1992 case of People v. Ramona Santorelli and Mary Lou Schloss. In 1986, the defendants were cuffed in a Rochester, N.Y., park for violating a law prohibiting women from showing “that portion of the breast which is below the top of the areola.” Santorelli and Schloss argued that the law was “discriminatory on its face since it defines ‘private or intimate parts’ of a woman’s but not a man’s body as including a specific part of the breast.” The New York Court of Appeals ruled in their favor.
Moira is an interesting character and has a few quotes that I enjoyed and think you might, too:
- Regarding the Yoga studio that insisted she cover her breasts:
Privately owned institutions are allowed to make their own rules as long as they apply equally to all people and don’t discriminate against sex or race. “So it’s basically as serious as saying black people aren’t allowed to take off their shirts but white people are,” Johnston says.
- On why she is doing this:
“I want women to know their rights and to give them the courage to go topless too,” she says when asked what she hopes will be the outcome of her cause. “It’s not that I want everyone to take off their shirt, but I’m supporting a woman’s choice to do it and think every woman should do it on her own terms.”
- On whether she feels comfortable topless in public:
“I find that this role is uniquely suited to me,” she says. “It’s something that I care about and think is important enough that I’m pursuing it.”
I can just picture this chick at Haverford Township Day. Topless, of course. Hey, is it too late to sign her up for that? Or maybe she could do a shift at the Darby & Manoa Wawa as a celebrity cashier. She’s hotter than half of the dreck in there now. (Hello? Felicia?)
Moira, if you’re reading this send me an email. I’d love to interview you for HavertownBuzz.com and find out more about your time in Haverford Township.
- All Topless in NYC is Legal – But 16+ ounces of sugary drinks aren’t. Hmm…seems like a good trade. (realthinktank.com)
- All Topless in NYC is Legal (dvorak.org)
- The Topless Crusader (thedailybeast.com)
- The Right to Bare Chest (goodnesssakepgh.wordpress.com)
- Topless in NYC (wtf.videosift.com)
- Slideshow: NY woman goes topless in public … and it’s legal (kdvr.com)
- Topless Activist Bares Breasts on Subway (nymag.com)
- Topless activist gets attention in NYC (wtvr.com)
- Topless Woman Raises Even More Awareness About Being Topless in NYC [Moira Johnston] (jezebel.com)