NAC Action Alert
MANTECA, CALIFORNIA

September 12, 2004

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                      NATURIST ACTION COMMITTEE
                            ACTION ALERT
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                 http://www.naturistsociety.com/NAC/
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DATE : September 12, 2004
SUBJECT: Manteca, California
TO : All California naturists

Dear California Naturist,

The Naturist Action Committee has identified an important local situation and is requesting your immediate involvement.

The city council of Manteca, California is considering an ordinance prohibiting nudity. The council is scheduled to consider the matter in its regular session on September 20, 2004.

NAC is asking you to take the following action:

    1) Send e-mail to the mayor and city council of Manteca.
    2) Attend the city council meeting on September 20, 2004.

BACKGROUND

Manteca officials are reacting to reports that someone in town was nude while washing a car on private property and someone else was sunbathing nude in a public park. The resulting overreaction has spawned a proposed ordinance that imposes an outright ban on nudity. The ordinance would apply to nudity on public land, and in some cases, to nudity on private property, including residential back yards. The broadly worded measure would criminalize the chests of females, but not of males.


NAC ASKS CALIFORNIA RESIDENTS TO CONTACT THE MANTECA CITY COUNCIL

Contacts from those outside California are NOT being requested at this time. Time is very short. Direct all your letters to the Manteca City Clerk. Correspondence received before the close of business on Monday, September 13, may be read into the official record, if you request it.

Letters received after that time will still be seen by Manteca City Council members and may have an effect, even if they're not read into the record.

NAC is asking California residents to contact the Manteca City Clerk:

If you can e-mail or fax your letter before the end of the day on Monday, September 13, PLEASE ask for it to be included in the official record!

There is enough time for postal mail to reach the lawmakers before the meeting on September 20. The postal address is:

    Joann Tilton, CMC
    Manteca City Clerk
    1001 W. Center St.
    Manteca, CA 95337
    (209) 239-8467

California municipalities have been observed to climb aboard when nearby towns pass anti-nudity ordinances. Letters from Manteca residents are especially important, but since all Californians are potentially at risk from the effect of a Manteca ordinance, NAC is urging ALL CALIFORNIA RESIDENTS to write and express their concern.

WHAT SHOULD I SAY?

When you write, be sure to give your name and address. Anonymous correspondence is typically ignored. Be polite. Avoid the temptation to preach to the city lawmakers.

In your message, state very clearly that you OPPOSE the proposed anti-nudity ordinance.


SOME POINTS TO CONSIDER

Please use your own words. Here are a few suggested points for you to consider:

    1) The City is talking about innocent nudity, not lewd behavior. State law already prohibits lewd behavior.

    2) The proposed ordinance is unfair to women.

    3) The proposed ordinance is a solution in search of a real problem. Washing a car and sunbathing are not threatening activities. They do not signal the breakdown of society in Manteca.

    4) People are "offended" every day by the otherwise legal activity of other people. It is not the function of government at any level to criminalize an activity on the sole basis that another may find it offensive. There is no Constitutional right not to be offended.

    5) The proposed ordinance is so broadly written that citizen run the risk of being cited for being nude in their own back yards.

    6) The State of California itself has seen no need to implement a ban on simple nudity. In a time of increasingly severe erosion to the liberties of individuals, does the City of Manteca really need to be leading the way in stripping away more personal freedoms?

ATTEND THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING ON SEPTEMBER 20

The Manteca City Council will meet in regular session on Monday, September 20. The anti-nudity ordinance will be on the agenda for its second reading. The Naturist Action Committee strongly urges concerned naturists to attend the meeting on September 20.

    WHEN:
    September 20, 2004 - 7:00 p.m.
    Try to be there at least a half hour early.
    WHERE:
    City council Chambers
    1001 W. Center Street

If you intend to speak to the issue, you must fill out a Speaker Request form in advance of the meeting. Preference may be given to those who are residents of Manteca.

Whether or not you're a resident, whether or not you choose to speak, NAC encourages you to demonstrate your opposition to this proposed ordinance by making your presence felt at the meeting on September 20.


WHAT IS NAC DOING?

The Naturist Action Committee is working with officials in the Manteca city government and locals who are familiar with the situation. NAC's goal is preventing the adoption of the proposed ordinance. Although others have suggested exemptions for "approved" or "appropriate" nudist venues, no such venue seems likely to be approved. NAC opposes the notion that exemptions of any sort offer a thoughtful solution to this situation.

Likewise, NAC opposes the importation of penal code language from other states, like Florida. California has a perfectly workable statute. The use of Florida's statutory language, without the Florida court decisions that modify and qualify it, would be a disaster.

Recently retired from a career as a municipal attorney, Naturist Action Committee board member Don Stanton is leading NAC's direct interface with the City of Manteca.


MORE INFORMATION

Additional information about the proposed Manteca ordinance is available on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee:

www.naturistsociety.com/NAC

Select ALERTS, ADVISORIES & UPDATES and then "Current Alerts" to find
this Advisory and links to additional information at LOCAL ISSUES, including:

The complete text of the proposed ordinance
The text of California state law concerning nudity.


PLEASE HELP NAC HELP NATURISTS IN CALIFORNIA AND ELSEWHERE

The Naturist Action Committee exists to advance and protect the rights of naturists throughout North America. NAC is a volunteer nonprofit organization that relies on the grass roots participation of those who understand that individuals working together can make a difference.

NAC has no membership roster on which to assess dues, and it relies completely on voluntary contributions from concerned and involved naturists like you. Monitoring lawmakers and coordinating action across North America is expensive.

Won't you take a moment to help NAC by sending a generous donation? You may send your donation to the address below, or you may call toll free (800) 886-7230 during normal office hours to donate by phone using your MasterCard or Visa.

    NAC
    PO Box 132
    Oshkosh, WI 54903

Thank you for choosing to make a difference!

Naturally,

Don Stanton, Charles Harris, Allen Baylis
Board Members
Naturist Action Committee

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Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Bob Morton - Executive Dir. - <ctnudists@aol.com>
Don Stanton - Board Member - <dfs1@comcast.net>
Charles Harris - Board Member - <harrisnaturist@comcast.net>
Allen Baylis - Board Member - <rab@baylislaw.com>
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick - <naturist@sunclad.com>
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