The moon, full tonight, was playing peek-a-boo behind layers of white lace when Koko and I went out in the darkness and looked up, through gently waving tree branches, at its waxing yellow splendor. Later, while I was lying in bed, it looked down at me, shining through the skylight and lighting up the room. And then a cloud swooped in and swallowed it up.
If you swallowed County Prosecutor Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho’s hyperbolic hysteria about the marijuana bills moving through the Lege — “If passed, these measures will result in increased violent crime, economic crisis, and a rise in marijuana usage among our children” — you’ll turn out for this afternoon’s fear-fest in front of the Historic County Building.
There you’ll hear misinformed law enforcement officers repeat the standard party line, which blames the plant for what are actually the deleterious effects of prohibition. Now that Paul Curtis is gone, The Garden Island actually ran a fair article about marijuana that included comments from the alleged perpetrator discounting the cops’ pot-motive version of a recent stabbing and a rebuttal from James Anthony, former community prosecutor for the city of Oakland, and a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.
I just hope we’re not paying anybody overtime — or any time — to participate in this afternoon’s ignorance-fueled power play. Because it’s kind of hard to swallow the line that the cops are understaffed and the PA’s office is overwhelmed when they can find time to organize, publicize and participate in a Chicken Little rally.
It’s also hard to swallow the complaint that naturists — those who like to swim and sunbathe nude — are somehow being persecuted because Waioli Corp. won’t give them the easiest possible access to Lepeuli (Larsen’s) Beach, as a letter to the editor from John Tyler Cragg asserts, or that their interest in obtaining that access doesn’t have everything to do with getting the easiest possible route to the beach. Tyler writes, in part:
If you make access hard enough, you will discourage use and they will go elsewhere.
I have no problem with people getting naked, but if they’re too damn lazy to walk on the sand to get to the place where they want to bare their buns, then that’s their problem. There is a legal access, and despite all the erroneous claims to the contrary, it is not especially difficult.
I wish the people fighting so hard for an easier access to Lepeuli would direct some of that energy to the coastlines of Haena, Wainiha, Anini and Aliomanu, where vegetation has been planted that is actually preventing people from using legal beach accesses as well as traversing the beach itself. But since they don’t want to get naked on those beaches, they apparently don’t give a shit.
I’m not a friend or fan of Bruce Laymon, who supposedly has the naturists quivering from fear and righteous indignation, but neither am a fan of those who have tried to turn a private property issue into a morality play. What they don’t seem to realize is, right or wrong, the naturist defense is the one that is least likely to gain them either sympathy or that access. They’d be better off throwing some money and support to the Sproats in their effort to establish the ala loa, but then, I’m not certain the Sproats want them on their side, either.
And while I don’t think anyone should be harassed at the beach, to the naked men complaining about being hassled by Bruce and his workers, let me say, hey, now you know what it’s like to be a woman. As a female who likes to go to remote beaches because they tend to have more wildlife, I’ve had to deal with men who hovered around me, followed me, repeatedly came on to me, exposed themselves to me and jacked off in front of me.
I even had a wealthy male coastal landowner grab me by the neck and throw me to the ground when I complained about his muddy runoff onto the beach, and the cops did nothing because when they finally responded, an hour after I called, he’d managed to line up a witness who claimed the guy never touched me.
So yes, I know what assholes men can be at the beach, and I’ve learned to be wary and watchful and move when I feel uneasy and sometimes leave before I’m ready.
But none of that has stopped me from going, because I have a right to be there, I want to be there and I’m not going to let fear or the bad behavior of a few men stop me.
I’m sure the naked boyz can similarly learn to handle as we work to perfect this not-so-perfect male-dominated world.