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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Nude bicycle protest planned for today

Bicycling advocates who oppose the elimination of a bicycle lane in one of New York City's Jewish neighborhoods are planning a nude protest bike ride.

The Associated Press reports the removal of clothing is meant as a protest over the removal of a bike lane in Williamsburg, an Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn.

The activists want to go topless in front of Hasidic residents who "can't handle scantily clad women" on wheels, bike messenger Heather Loop told a local newspaper earlier this week.

Members of the Satmar branch of Judaism "don't want to see women in shorts," says Baruch Herzfeld, who runs a bike-sharing program in a community where Jewish women wear hefty skirts and blouses with long sleeves and men heavy coats and hats, even in summer.

The paper, the Brooklyn Paper, later reported that a bike advocacy group, Transportation Alternatives, wants people to keep their clothes on.

“A bike lane on Bedford Avenue is about transportation and road safety,” the Transportation Alternatives’ statement said. “Rhetoric or acts that pit neighbors against one another are not just irrelevant to this discussion, they are flat-out offensive. A bike ride of people in provocative undress doesn’t make Bedford any safer, and undermines efforts to bring north Brooklynites together to solve this problem.”

Cyclists -- whether they're nude or fully clothed -- may have a real challenge today. Up to 10 inches of snow are forecast to fall on New York City today.


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Roger 1 comments links to this post 1:33 AM

In case you didn't see what happened, you can read The Associated Press story. It was a little too wintry for the protesters to go nude, although some did wear plastic breasts.
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