Yesterday I posted that blog entry about nudity, which I also posted to facebook. As normal, all of the replies came on facebook itself. People today can’t be bothered to visit a blog and reply in the comments form there. Most of the time they can’t even be bothered to click a link to read something outside of facebook. You have to deliver the content in the facebook feed itself. But to be fair I already knew this and posted it first to facebook and then added it to this blog. So I’m really bitching for no reason. lol
What I found interesting, was the overwhelming bias against public nudity. Most of the comments were subjective reasons against it. Personal, emotional reasons more than actual objective facts. The reasons given were things like “I don’t want to see it” and “I don’t want my kids exposed to it” and “there is a time and place for it’ and “it might desensitize me to nudity and thus effect my sexual attraction.” I still consider that last one subjective even though it borders on the objective. Objectively it may desensitize people to nudity and cause them to no longer become aroused just by seeing a naked person. But it’s subjective because it’s based on the individual. We can’t assume that of all individuals. Even if true, we have to identify why that would be bad. We have to weigh out whether it’s better to give people the freedom to go nude in public or protect people who want to be easily aroused by seeing a naked person.
Generally speaking though, it amazes me to see friends of mine who often consider themselves progressive or at least who I consider progressive, act in such a way that is very conservative and push their emotional bias over actual facts. They were arguing with me against public nudity on the grounds that they didn’t like it, rather than stepping back and realizing they didn’t actually have a real objective reason to keep it illegal and limit the freedom to do it.
I’m left wondering why. Clearly they have a very strong emotional bias against public nudity. But why? What happened in their lives that made them so against it? Is it social conditioning? Were they traumatized by public nudity in the past? If public nudity was legalized, what are they afraid of?
It wasn’t until the end, after many comments, that someone finally brought up the whole public health/disease problem. Body fluids (unchecked by clothing) making their way onto public benches and such. That is a real objective drawback to public nudity. A definite potential problem and one I recognized even before posting the original post. But I held back on mentioning it because I wanted to give others something to comment with. I figured it would be brought up in the first comment, because it’s the most logical reply against public nudity. I just wasn’t prepared for as much subjective reasoning as I got long before it was finally brought up.
Of course once that was finally brought up, everyone who had a subjective reason jumped on the actual objective reason as their main reason not to allow it. Why? Because ultimately everyone knows that an objective reason is better than a subjective reason. “It can spread disease” is always a better defense than “I just don’t like it.”
Of course, they will use as many subjective reasons as they can to fight something they don’t agree with. That is until an objective reason is introduced into their arsenal. Then, suddenly, those subjective reasons they were using, don’t matter as much to them anymore. They’ve got something real to fight with now.
It just stuns me over and over again that people can be so biased. Even people I would think are open minded. That they would argue against something like public nudity with such subjective reasons.
People give far too much importance to their biases and not enough to facts. They let their personal biases make calls on things that personal bias should never make calls on, like the legality of things that affect the freedom of others. That’s scary in my opinion. Yet we see it all the time. It must be rooted in some kind of fear. I can’t explain why else people would do this.