Washington DC: When the nine justices of the US Supreme Court convene on the first Monday in October, they will be hearing oral arguments in the case of BRA Vs Topless. This year's Supreme Court session is their first judicial proceeding to be televised.
A topless women's advocacy group claims going topless is a constitutional right under the 10th amendment to the US Constitution. The City Council of San Francisco passed an ordnance to allow women to go topless, which was upheld by the California Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. This law forbids women under 21 and over 55 years of age from participating. San Francisco's Gay and Lesbian community members have had no reaction or a mixed reaction, respectively.
The original law suit was brought by a consortium of Brassiere manufacturers (BRA), who claimed restraint of trade, in accordance with clauses in the US Constitution. A Federal Trade Commission (FTC) spokesperson said "restraint of trade can be argued either way depending on two points of view, whether you are a woman who puts on or takes off a Brassiere during working hours." Lawyers for various underwear manufacturers continue to submit briefs on both sides!
The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has been carefully monitoring this situation and a spokesperson said "the safety of topless women in the workplace such as cooks, salespersons, teachers, welders, building construction, machine tool operations and bulldozer operators needs further study and testing."
An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) spokesman had a big smile on his face, but said "no comment!" Environmentalist groups are very unhappy about having topless women spruce up the environment, claiming "environmentalists are the only boobs that should be on display in public places."
Several issues remain unresolved, according to court watchers, as pretrial activities continue. This case is the newest Supreme Court Associate Justice's first case, how will she rule as a "wise Latina woman?" Will the liberal justices be liberal and the conservative justices be conservative? Are court appearances by women defense witnesses going to be topless?