Guest Nudist Blog Post By: Chet Kresiak

The War Against Naturist Camps For Children

Nudist Camps and Naturist Kids: America continues to be stunned lately by the awful claims about child abuse at Penn State University. Scandals involving sexual molestation of children have rocked many of our most revered institutions, including the Boy Scouts, the Catholic Church and in our schools. It is clear that child abuse is a societal problem, not restricted to any particular organization or association. Even the naturist citizenry was victimized by those who would exploit children for sexual purposes, although it is extremely rare.
Any individual or group intending naturist actions must be aware of the current cultural climate, which will be becoming increasingly intolerant of any activities involving kids who could be misconstrued as being inappropriate or dangerous. Naturists believe that people of most ages should be able to participate in bare recreation, that rejecting shame as it pertains to the body is advantageous to physical, mental and sexual health. The presence of children is of the philosophy, and to remove them from naturist actions would significantly redefine the modern movement which began in Germany in 1903.
Morley Schloss, board member of the Naturist Action Committee, manages a naturist youth camp at Sunsport Gardens in Florida, and debunks the view that kids are somehow at risk in naturist settings. From what I read, children are safer at naturist resorts than in scout camps, church groups or malls. are gated communities. Members and guests are screened for unlawful action. Kids have many folks searching for them, adults and other kids. Since naturist kids are generally comfortable with their bodies, they would not be reluctant to report any tactics to them with which they are uncomfortable. Hence, kids are quite safe from maltreatment in naturist venues.
Nudist Children
In January of 2010, acting on an anonymous complaint, The Florida State Department of Children and Families paid a visit to Sunsport Gardens. Mr. Schloss welcomed them in, showed them pictures of kids having fun at the youth camp, and the officials left met that Sunsport offered a safe, caring environment.
However, overzealous politicians or prosecutors are constantly looking for “hot button” issues with which to rouse public sentiment in their own favor, such as for example in 2003 when U. S. Representative Mark Foley (R) Florida read an article in the New York Times about an AANR naturist youth camp at Lake Como Nudist Resort in Land OLakes. Foley was running for Senator at the time and felt he needed a family values issue to take focus far from rumors swirling about that he was gay, so he seized the opportunity to started a campaign against the youth camps, accusing them of “manipulating nudity among minor kids to make money.”
The narrative about the youth camps went nationwide, with Foley appearing on Fox News, and Time Magazine running an article asking the question “are they any spot for children?” The firestorm had started.
In Florida, naturists took actions, meeting right with Congressman Foley, and gradually the issue faded away, definitely due in part to the political strength of the naturist people in Pasco County. Governor Jeb Bush’s office released a statement saying that The rights of parents to impart their values in their own kids and raise their children as they see fit are holy.”
Nudist Kids
At about the exact same time, since the Times article mentioned that a young naturist camp was also being held in Arizona and future camps were being planned in both Texas and Virginia, anti-camp bills were fast introduced in those state.
There were also ultimately no political consequences in Arizona, but in February of 2004 the Virginia House of Delegates voted 98-1 to require parental supervision at camps for young nudists, later approved by the Senate 40-0. The single vote was against the act because the bill didn’t go far enough. In 2005 a bill was introduced to modify the language in the naturist camp legislation, which would have effectively prohibited kids from all naturist and naturist places, but that legislation was tabled for future thought.