In New York City Sunday, 300 women took to the streets to protest for the protection of their right to bare arms…and chests.
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The New York Daily News reports they were speaking out against Mayor Bill de Blasio’s effort to bar bare-breasted women with painted chests from the pedestrian plaza at Times Square. The annual Topless Parade went from Columbus Circle by Central Park to Bryant Park in front of the New York Public Library.
The crowd of onlookers, inflated with curious onlookers and…let’s say, excited gentlemen watched and listened as the women called for equal rights to bare their chests.
“Free your mind! Free your nipples!” shouted Katie Lombardo, an event coordinator from Long Island. “Men can walk around shirtless all the time. Why can’t we? I love it, This is about the genders being equal.”
Officials are trying to clean up Times Square’s reputation for misbehaving costumed characters and topless painted ladies busking for photos. Luna Vega came topless in solidarity and said those models shouldn’t be hassled by city and state government.
“I support them. They are just trying to make a living,” Vega said. “I always see them smiling and posing for photos. People walk up to them. They want to pose with them.”
Claire Hogenauer, a 69-year-old former defense attorney, let it all hang out at Times Square Saturday in solidarity with the protesters’ cause.
“I’ve been a feminist since age 12,” she told The New York Post. “This is the first time in my life I’ve done this. I’m trying to get a thousand women to join me.”