A New Zealand native is set to return to nature with his preferred style of nude running this week after a judge ruled that his unique form of exercise is not "offensive."
Andrew Pointon, 47, was charged with offensive conduct in August 2011, after a woman filed a complaint about him running in a park while wearing only sneakers. But Pointon appealed the charge, and Justice Paul Heath sided with him last week.
In making his ruling, Heath compared Pointon's harmless jogging to the hypothetical jog of a few gang members.
"It would not be surprising for a person in the position of the complainant to be concerned and discomforted by their presence, and even to feel threatened," Heath said. "However, on any view, their behavior would not be regarded as offensive behavior. Should the sight of a naked man, in the circumstances in which the complainant found herself, be treated any differently? I think not."
After the ruling, Pointon's lawyer, Michael Bott, said that Heath's ruling wasn't a "nudists' charter," and Pointon explained his desire to run naked.
"There's no connotations to it, there's nothing sexual about it, there's nothing perverted about it and that's the way just being naked is," Pointon said. "Just feeling good in your own body."
Some groups aren't happy with Heath's ruling, including the conservative group Family First.
"Is it OK for someone to streak through his courtroom?" Bob McCoskrie, a spokesman for Family First, said. "He'd be the first one to put them in the cells."
Pointon, a naturist for more than two decades, held firm in his beliefs.
"If it was [offensive] then God wouldn't have given us genitals," Pointon told the Dominion Post. "It is a win for all libertarians and a setback for all conservatives in the country."
(H/T to Huffington Post)
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