The crusade to retain the right to be naked in the streets of San Francisco marches on as a federal judge has whittled down a lawsuit brought by nudist activists against the City of San Francisco, but allowed it to move forward to trial in the new year. The suit, which has been amended twice by the nudist complainants, said both that nudist activists were having their First Amendment rights infringed upon by police enforcing San Francisco's 2012 nudity ban, and that they have been unfairly targeted and cited by police.
U.S. District Judge Edward Chen, who had previously dismissed the nudists' suit back in early 2013, took their second amended complaint and stripped out all but two instances in which the SFPD may have selectively targeted the activists for arrest or citation both of which occurred during protests of the ban itself on the steps of City Hall.
As Courthouse News reports, the nudists and their lawyer argued that there were multiple "control group" instances, like a permitted film shoot on Castro Street by local gay porn concern NakedSword (shooting a movie that was, in fact, parodying Scott Wiener and the nudity ban itself, called Golden Gate 5) wherein police were present and people were nude but no citations were handed out. Judge Chen wrote in his decision, "For purposes of the anti-nudity ordinance, these groups are similarly situated to plaintiffs; there is no obvious reason why other groups who violate the ordinance should not have been subjected to enforcement."
This is, of course, a boon for the nudists, who have been staging nude-ins, nude weddings, and nude Olympics ever since the ban was passed, not to mention taking every opportunity to taunt the SFPD and beg for citations that they could take to court.
Will the nudity ban, championed by Scott Wiener and some of his constituents to allay the scourge of old-man genitalia that was plaguing them in Jane Warner Plaza in 2011-12, ever be struck down? Probably not. But court cases like this one may at least chip away at the practice of how it's enforced and give the nudists more to tweet about.
In practice, the same handful of individuals who were often seen nude in the Castro prior to the ban, still go au naturel on warmer days simply with tiny sheaths over their junk per the law which is hardly any better than being nude. So, yeah. The law is pointless.