Topless swimming to be allowed in Swedish municipal pools?

Sweden’s women to swim topless in its municipal pools?.


Two women bathed with bare chest at the swimming pool in Umeå, now they have started a petition for the right of women to dress as men, even at the swimming pool.

A petition for women to get to swim with bare chest at the swimming pool in Umeå has collected nearly 200 signatures. Fanny Karlsson and Elin West got the idea for the petition after they tried to swim with swimming trunks at the swimming pool in Umeå; a manifestation of women’s rights and for a avsexualisering of the female breast. It went well for about fifteen minutes.

– Then came a lifeguard and said that the manager’s policy is that you have to have top, says Elin West.

They discussed a while with The claimant who argued that there must be equal for all, that all women must have the upper.

– We certainly think that it is really not the same for everyone, men and women must be different Dressed at the bath house today, and that’s what we want to pay attention.

Demanded money back
Fanny Karlsson and Elin West had checked the rules before they visited the swimming pool and nowhere did they find any rule that you have to have a bikini.

– We got names and numbers to the bathhouse boss and we got our money back.

The girls photographed themselves and the image picked up by the network FEMEN Sweden Facebook. There they have received great support, but also criticism and attacks.

– We have received many strange comments, one person wrote, for example, that one can not equate the man’s chest and female breast because women’s breasts are sexual organs. Another was afraid that this might lead women to start breastfeeding in public, says Elin West.

Long history of oppression
Elin West believes that swimsuit long been an issue for Equality Movement. Already in 1905, when the first modern swimsuit came was questioned it because it was considered shameful. In the 1920s, measured how much bone sticking out under your bathing suit, it was too much, it was fine.

This may seem like a small thing compared to other equality issues, so why is this so important to bathe topless?

– This is not about everyone has to walk around with bare breasts all the time, but to be able to do it if you find it convenient, says Elin West.

But you get the objectified when you make these kinds of actions. Is there not a danger that people look more at your breasts than listening to what you say?

– It’s the price you pay for that woman always been limited, this is about owning rights to her own body. Our purpose is to have a discussion about why women’s breasts are so sexualized. This is because we want to draw attention to the oppression of the female body.

Met bathhouse manager
On Monday, had Fanny Karlsson and Elin West a meeting with bathhouse boss. They handed over the signatures and sat down and talked with him for a long moment.

– The meeting was a bit stormy, but in substance he agreed with us. He said he will raise the issue with the board tomorrow (Tuesday), said Fanny Karlsson.

I’ve been passed the story by one of SLN’s Swedish readers, regarding an incident that happened last March (2014). I’ve not been able to find any updates online to see if the ladies won their battle to have equality with men, and I’d be delighted if anyone can update us on the story. (The text above is a verbatim Google Translation of the story found in the link).

topless pool jelena_001b

Like the men do: model Jelena tries out a swimming pool in ‘male’ swim clothing.


Je suis Charlie

By now, you’ll all be aware of the horrific events in Paris, France, in which twelve people died, most of them journalists from the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine based in the city.

All of us who are Brits are, covertly or overtly, Francophiles. We admire our Gallic cousins. Their weather, their wine, their cheeses, their lifestyle. They, in turn, admire Britain, to the extent that France’s second city (in terms of the number of French domiciled within it) is actually London.

Tonight, we all stand united against those who would attack our freedom of speech.

All of us in the UK will almost certainly have learnt the French language, above any other, in school. This, the language of one of our nearest neighbours, gives us a bond with our friends across ‘La Manche’ -the English Channel- that divides us  from continental Europe. While politics sometime divides us in the UK from the rest of Europe, tonight we are united. Tonight, ce soir nous sommes tous Charlie. We are all Charlie.


Tonight, we thank President Obama for his support in the fight to unearth, and bring to justice, those who murdered, allegedly in the name of Islam. While I consider him to be one of America’s great presidents, I recognise there are those who disagree. Some fear Obamacare, his colour, and his alleged secretive ‘Muslim’ past. The difference is that those who disagree with me won’t challenge that view with bullets, only with words. Which is how it should be. However vehemently others may disagree with my view on President Obama, they will accept my right to express it. Without bullets. Those of us in the UK, in the US, in continental Europe, recognise and accept freedom of expression. We have not been poisoned.

(Edited: originally this post contained an image of some of the events in Paris during the past week. The brother of a policeman slain during this murderous attack has spoken of his grief at the photographs spread around the world. In respect of his view, and that of the family, I’ve edited the post to remove that image, which I originally included due to its impact, and the fact that it perfectly illustrated what was wrong, what was inhumane, what was evil about the events. I got that wrong, and I’ve moved to remove it on reading the policeman’s brother’s words. This is why I leave the blogging, in the main, to Ella & Pookes: such errors of judgement don’t happen on their shift. My apologies. Howie)
Today, even the lowest common denominator ‘rags’ of the British press have the tone right. The photograph from today, Thursday’s, ‘Sun’ (UK) newspaper, shows allegedly Al-Qaeda terrorists seconds from shooting a French policeman, believed to be Muslim himself, to death. It is an image that should horrify all of us, but frighten none on us. It simply unifies us against a horrific, medieval world view that, mark my words, will be defeated, should it take the length of 2015 or the 21st century.

I would call on all people, whether they call themselves Christian, Muslim, Jew, or any other religion, to declare their opposition to this sort of action.

Tonight, today, we are all Charlie. Tonight, I am Charlie. Tonight, I hope you, too, are Charlie.

Howie Lamilton