Nudity Ban Protest, Jane Warner Plaza, S.F. 2013-11-17

Nudity Ban Protest, Jane Warner Plaza, San Francisco, 17th November 2013. All photos by Leif Heilberg.

Gypsy Taub, the local activist, had planned a protest against the nudity ban, for 12 o’clock noon at Jane Warner Plaza in San Francisco. Gypsy and entourage arrived about twenty minutes before, and started setting up posters for the staging of the event.

Already there was the German TV crew from Cologne. The main videographer was Christian, and the interviewer was Kurt; the sound man carried a pole with a microphone attached to its end.

Kurt spoke to whomever he found capable of giving info about the event, about nudism in San Francisco, etc.

At 12 noon several semi-nude folks had set up in a section of the plaza, and they started with addressing the gathering crowd, explaining what they were up to. Then a few of the activists stripped nude, and Gypsy read up a long statement. Very soon patrol cars came up 17th Street, parked, and disgorged a dozen police officers who for the time being remained in the background, beyond the crowds. Some anti-social individual had called the cops, and by 30 minutes into the event, half a dozen patrol cars, a motorcycle, and a paddy wagon were visible on 17th Street.

When Gypsy had finished her statement she announced that she was going to be married next month at San Francisco City Hall, and the wedding was to be in the nude. Then she said the group was now going to walk down Castro Street. That was at twenty to one, forty minutes into the event, and just then the big Razzia began, with the cops moving in and arresting Gypsy and her fiancé, putting handcuffs on them and marching them away.

Gypsy protested and showed a police officer that a 2-hour permit for the event had been issued by City Hall. The police disregarded the permit and hauled these “dangerous criminals” away.

Leif Heilberg

All photographs taken by Leif Heilberg, Viking Photography Inc.,

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