Lighthouses, fishing and foggy afternoons capture wholesome living on the island of Nantucket, feeling worlds apart from the bustling metropolitan lifestyle and its temptations.
Everything’s about to change, potentially.
Shaking up Nantucket troupes, residents held a meeting last month to vote on whether topless sunbathing would be permitted on all Nantucket public and private beaches. An article presented by Eve Messing, as reported by The Wall Street Journal, brought the issue back into vote, which exceedingly gained approval from residents, 327 to 242.
“I definitely had a few people even close to me that said that they didn’t agree with it, which is beautiful, right?” Messing said. “That’s democracy, that’s being humans together, and knowing that we’re not going to agree.”
One resident said that the risque behavior was more reminiscent of the neighboring and free-spirited Martha’s Vineyard than the typical Nantucket lifestyle.
The guideline keeps activity somewhat modest by only allowing topless rather than full-frontal. Messing and approving residents believe the rule is a progressive outlook on nudity at the beach between men and women.
Nantucket’s old guard is making its case for the guideline to not see the light of day, citing safety concerns and a general sentiment of indecency.
“Why do I need to run around topless to prove that I’m just as good or better than a male?” said Nantucket native Linda Williams.
The ruling still waits on approval from the Massachusetts attorney general, with a decision expected by August.
“It’s a little much for a popular resort [community] that’s basically family-oriented,” said another local, vouching for things to stay in line with the small-town charm.
“I’m getting older, so maybe I’m more conservative. Younger people think it’s fine, but I don’t share that point of view. I think it’s better for everyone to wear appropriate attire at the beach.”
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela