Some Nude Beach Etiquette

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Sex On The Beach should remain just a drink

Summer is the time of year when people of all races, genders and sexual orientations shed their clothes and head for the beach. Those of us who are nudists have the advantage of enjoying the beach without worrying about whether or not our swimsuits are too long, too short, too fat, or not fashionable enough. I am more fortunate than most in the fact that my nude beach of choice, Haulover Beach in north Miami-Dade County, is only 40 minutes away, easily accessible, and condoned by the local authorities. Haulover Beach is also blessed by the fact that the warm South Florida climate allows it to be open and functional all the time, which is something that cannot be said for clothing-optional beaches in colder climates. Readers sometimes wonder why I stay in a state run by the likes of Rick Scott, Pam Bondi or Marco Rubio. My answer, among others, is Haulover Beach.

I love the beach, and I am sorry that I do not go there as often as I want. Like any other public place, the beach is governed by a set of rules that hopefully will guarantee public order, mutual respect, and safety. In many clothing-optional beaches local naturist groups serve as “Beach Ambassadors” who monitor the beach to make sure that everything is copacetic. In Haulover Beach the Beach Ambassadors are members of South Florida Free Beaches/Florida Naturist Association (www.SFFB.com), “an organization advocating for a fair share of public beaches and other suitable public commons for nude recreation in Florida, including the designation of clothing optional areas.” On its web site, SFFB/FNA lists a set of rules of “Naturist Beach Etiquette,” a few common sense rules that, if observed, guarantee a pleasurable day at the Beach for all of us:

Naturist Beach Etiquette

1. Please help keep the beach clean and remove your trash
2. Protect the dunes and do not walk on them
3. No glass containers on the beach
4. Pets are not permitted on the beach
5. The beach is not an ashtray
6. Use earphones or keep radio volume low
7. Please exercise common courtesy and ask permission before taking photos of those not in your party
8. Gawking or staring is rude!
9. Dress before leaving posted naturist area

SFFB/FNA concludes its list by reminding us that “Public sexual activity is inappropriate and illegal. Florida statutes 800.03 & 800.04 provide for misdemeanor and felony penalties for public lewd behavior.”

Naturists have enough to do to preserve the few clothing-optional beaches that we have without worrying about a few bad apples spoiling the whole barrel. Though naturist groups try to convince the world that nudists have family values like everyone else, the fact is that most Americans still think nudists are weird if not perverted.

From Maine to California, authorities have used public sex as an excuse to crack down on nude beaches, and we do not want to give the authorities more ammunition than they already have. Little Magens Beach, a popular gay nude beach on the island of St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands, was recently closed down because of the actions of a few “rude” people.

Though I like sex as much as anyone else, for practical reasons I support the naturist groups on this matter, as long as the laws are equally enforced. Have a good time, but remember, “sex on the beach” should only be a drink.


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