Today I am struggling with the delicate balance between letting my children know that their bodies are beautiful, wonderful things that they should never feel bad about or be ashamed of, and making sure that they never, under any circumstances, show them to anyone. We all know that nudity is bad (possibly the worst thing that could ever happen), but just how bad is it? And why?
For one thing, we know that nudity is way worse than violence. You could go to a bar, punch somebody in the face, and it could be laughed off. There could even be a huge brawl with blood, broken noses and bones, and ruined furniture, and I could still see a scenario in which everyone walks away with little to no consequence. Try walking into the same bar and taking off your pants. You will get a naked police car ride.
When I was a kid, nudity was a big deal to me. I never showered in gym class (heck, I never really participated much in gym class, so I was not sweaty) out of fear, and the worst thing that could have ever happened to me would have been to be seen naked. Not just in puberty, but before and after. It was one of my major concerns. I don’t want my kids so terrified of being seen that they stress out about it and miss out on activities that they might have otherwise enjoyed. But I also have to prepare them for a society that hates (but secretly loves) nudity.
The naked human body is bad because we love it a little too much. Our Puritan forefathers decided that if they were to see a human with any of their clothing missing, they would want to do impure things to it, so better just to remove the temptation. Or maybe it was Adam and Eve who decided this. I can’t remember if they were Puritans or not. All I know is that people want to see other naked people, which is why we must not allow it. Except on television, or in movies, or online. I think Cole Porter said it best with these lyrics: “In olden days a glimpse of stocking was looked on as something shocking, but now, God knows, people can ride construction equipment naked and lick hammers.” Porter was truly ahead of his time.
So in conclusion, Batman can beat the crap out of whomever he pleases, but he can not have nipples. And I will try to keep my naked children in the house, and not running around outside. But if they ask why, I’m going to have to tell them that it is because you are unable to control yourself. And also it is cold out.