A journalist made one mayor incredibly uncomfortable recently when she removed her top during an otherwise serious interview about Go Topless Day.
Columnist and radio host Lori Welbourne was speaking to Kelowna Mayor Walter Gray about the legality of Sunday’s topless protest day, and asked whether a young woman going sans-shirt in public would face arrest. Roughly halfway through her line of questioning, she handed the microphone to Mayor Gray and simply removed her top.
“What are you doing?” Gray asked.
“It’s really hot in here,” replied Welbourne.
“Really?” he shot back.
That’s about where the interview descended into an attempt at “gotcha” journalism. Welbourne clearly had a point to make, asking the mayor to cover his “earlobes” because they are distracting, and asking if he is aware that human beings are, in fact, naked under their clothing.
But Gray was more or less conciliatory to Welbourne, explaining from the start that police can’t stop women from going topless in public because the bylaws preventing them from doing so were already repealed. He also seems to more or less understand her point, though he seems uncomfortable with her aggression and line of questioning.
Interestingly, her toplessness seems to be the least awkward thing about the interview.
But was that the point? One YouTuber made an interesting observation about the video’s censorship:
“Censoring the video waters down her argument,” wrote user xeranox. “She is advocating that a woman being topless should not be deemed as ‘inappropriate’, yet the video is censored as it is obviously deemed ‘inappropriate’ because she is topless. The message here is still that topless women = inappropriate.”
Go Topless Day was August 25 and is celebrated in most cities across North America. It was started in 2007 by the American organization “Go Topless” and is meant to fight for equal rights for men and women to be topless in public, one of the few issues that men and women generally agree on.
Thanks to Welbourne’s topless antics, we know that at least in Montreal, you can go topless and not get arrested anywhere you like. Just maybe stay out of the mayor’s office to be nice.