An online journal celebrating the joys of living bare with pride! This site usually publishes every Monday and Friday. I may be irreverent but I am no way irrelevant! My preferred personal pronouns are he, him, his.
Given the body language, physical contact and hair-styles of the naked/nude men presented in the vintage photos below, there remains little doubt over the authenticity of these pictures. The bigotry and disgust directed towards any hint of same gender love supports their validity. Remember, “back in the day” the idea of “gay-for-pay” had practically no audience whatsoever! Segregation was the law of the land in every state except Illinois and homosexuality (gay) was viewed as severe perversion!
Introduction and Justification:
As a part of ReNude Pride’s annual observance of USA Black History Month, this photo-essay offers proof that decades before the 1969 Stonewall Inn Riots (SIR) heralded the modern gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer+ (GLBTQ+) civil and equal rights movement, the USA African-American culture ventured into limited existence. General society accepted, condoned, endorsed and practiced homophobic policies and prejudices during this era. Government, law enforcement, and religious institutions extolled and sanctioned this discriminatory behaviour, but bravery and courageous African-American GLBTQ+ pioneers cautiously followed hearts and souls down the trail to happiness.
These photographs confirm not only their sexuality during repression; they also provide evidence of their comfort and practice of their nakedness! Indeed: the pilgrims of bare practitioners!
These historic and vintage photographs discredit and dispel the popular and widespread myth that the African-American GLBTQ+ community and culture didn’t exist before SIR in 1969. Bare practitioners (same gender loving naturist/nudist) are inherently and naturally African-American as they are with other ethnicities and races everywhere!
The above couple, from the early 1960’s exemplify the growing acceptance of their same gender loving status among themselves and their community of peers. It didn’t happen overnight but slowly, it began to gain momentum as the “age of love” started to emerge onto the popular culture.
ReNude Pride appreciates, salutes and supports the bold and proud initiative of the men featured here today! Their efforts and energy made it possible for advances in GLBTQ+ community and culture everywhere!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Tuesday, February 7, 2023, and the proposed topic is: “National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day!”
The month of February, annually, is designated Black History Month throughout the USA. Here at ReNude Pride, in addition to the historical feature, we also honour the same gender loving (gay) and the bare practitioner (naturist/nudist) lifestyles of the African-American culture. In addition, we recognize that this culture is not restricted to focus only one month out of the entire year!
In 1607, the first permanent English settlement was established in the “New World” (North America as it is known today). The location was Jamestown, Virginia – which remains a tourist attraction. The first slaves captured from Africa were brought here and sold or traded in late August, 1619. Thus established, slavery was a binding and legal institution throughout the colonial era and up until the conclusion of the American Civil War (fought over the slavery issue) in 1865.
Despite the Declaration of Independence stating the basic “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” clause, the United States of America did not recognize slaves as people but instead as property. Slaves were denied (legally) property rights, education, freedom to travel and most importantly, their dignity. It was as though these captives from Africa did not exist. This situation implanted the idea of racism that remains a major issue in the USA legal, political and social structures even at this time. The killing of a slave – for whatever reason – was not considered murder nor a crime. The stealing of a slave wasn’t seen as kidnapping and/or enforced detention but rather viewed as property theft.
For almost a century and a half after the US civil war, the history of African-Americans was, for all intents and purposes, completely ignored here in almost every public school system. In the minds of educators, administrators and the general public, “they” (Black Americans) came here as slaves and were freed after the civil war and that was enough acknowledgement of African-American history.
In 1926, noted Black historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History announced the second week in February, annually, to be known as “Negro History Week.” This particular week was selected because it contained the birthday of Abraham Lincoln (February 12) and the birthday of Frederick Douglass, a noted Black American advocate for abolishing slavery (February 14).
The initial Negro History Week in 1926 was received with limited recognition. The state departments of education in Delaware, North Carolina and West Virginia endorsed the observation as did the public school administrations of the cities of Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C.
Carter G. Woodson wrote in The Negro Journal in support of the celebration: “If a race has no history, it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world and it stands in danger of being exterminated.”
Regardless of the lack of “official” support for Negro History Week, within the African-American community the reaction and response was dramatic and overwhelming. No matter the ignoring of this occasion by general society and the public school systems, Black churches, fraternal and social organizations and individual educators enthusiastically adopted the concept as an essential cause. It became a distinct and popular annual event involving competitions (both athletic and academic), enactments and festivities. Carter G. Woodson’s ideal instilled a sense of determination and pride within the Black community and race. This achievement earned him the title “Father of Black History Month.”
Throughout the 1930’s, Negro History Week continued to grow in acceptance, slowly but surely. It contradicted the White American myth in the South’s “lost cause” that argued that slaves had been well-treated, fairly cared for and that the Civil War was nothing more than a war of “northern aggression.”
The ongoing development, growth and success of the original Negro History Week soon produced positive results not only within the Persons of Colour community but also in the society in general. The number of states recognizing the designation gradually increased as did the number of businesses, local and national, who identified the opportunity for expansion and increase of profits.
The first observance of the entire month of February as Black History Month occurred at Kent State University in 1970. Then-President Gerald Ford was the first president to acknowledge and publicly recognize Black History Month during the celebration of the USA bicentennial in 1976, fifty years following Carter G. Woodson’s and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History first Negro History Week observance.
The twenty-first century has brought remarkable achievements to the contents of Black History Month. In November, 2008, Barack Hussein Obama was elected the very first African-American president of the USA – ever! His two terms of office were from January, 2009, until January, 2016.
In November, 2019, Kamela Harris was elected the very first woman vice-president and the first African-American vice-president. Her first term of office is from January, 2020, until January, 2024.
Carter G. Woodson is indeed proud of his Black History Month and the fact that his community’s history is still being made, today!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Friday, February 3, 2023, and the proposed topic is: “Photo Essay: Man-2-Man!”
Awarded in Stockholm, Sweden, by His Majesty, King Gustaf VI Adolph, on October 14, 1964.
Civil and Equality Rights Advocate
Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)
Founder, 1957, President until his death
Presidential Medal of Freedom
Posthumously given by President Jimmy Carter in 1977
At birth, he was originally named Michael J. King, Jr., the son of Reverend Michael J. King, Sr. and Alberta Williams King. After attending a religious conference in Germany in 1934, his father changed his name to Martin Luther King, Sr., and his son’s name to Martin Luther King, Jr.
He married Coretta Scott and they produced four children: Yolanda, Martin L. III, Dexter Scott and Bernice.
The Reverend Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. organized the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1957 and directed the campaign for civil rights and equality until his assassination in 1968.
He organized the National March on Washington for Freedom and Jobs on August 28, 1963. At this event, he delivered the keynote address, “I have a dream…” More than 120,000 people attended this gathering, At that time, it was the largest political rally held on the National Mall.
The Reverend Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. was honoured by a state funeral in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, on April 7, 1968.
Naked hugs on Dr. King’s holiday, 2023!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Wednesday, January 18, 2023, and the proposed topic is: “Prevention Routines!”
My regular publishing schedule for ReNude Pride is Monday and Friday. Since my back-to-back publication here for “Bottoms-Up! End of December, 2022!” and “Nude New Year, 2023!” I decided to post entry this today, January 3, rather than yesterday.
January 3, 2009, the day that I first met Jay, who has become a fast and loyal friend of mine! Barack Obama had just been elected as “president-to-be” in November, 2008. This country was desperate for and seriously needed a change in direction, a change in leadership and the promise of hope – and a chance of a future!
On this date, Mr. Obama was just a few brief weeks away from officially assuming his presidency. Everywhere in the Washington, D.C. area, there was an atmosphere of excitement, of fulfillment and a sense of hope, joy and promise. Of kindness and respect. Of decency, honesty and renewal. Those “weapons of mass destruction” were proven false, nonexistent and evaporated into complete fabrication.
This was the tone of the atmosphere that existed the day we first met and began our friendship. At that time, there was a local bar (tavern) in downtown Washington, D.C., that on two Saturday afternoons every month (the first and the third) was rented to a local gay men’s social nudity club for “naked happy hour” from 1:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. (also referred to as “naked cocktails”). There exists a very “seedy and sleazy” inference on the choice of “cocktail!” Great minds, descend into the gutter and get to work!
The crowd at the social nude event on that day was wall-to-wall. Before the first hour had passed the doors were locked and the only admittance was only if someone on the inside left. The District of Columbia Fire Marshall had posted an officer at the entrance to physically monitor the situation and the compliance.
Jay was already seated at a table for two, alone, when I saw him from across the lobby. There was an empty chair beside him. I headed in that direction through the mob. When we made eye-contact, I pointed to the chair with a questioning expression on my face. Jay smiled, pulled out the chair and patted the seat with his hands. I nodded, pointed to my right ear and shook my head in a negative manner, conveying to him that I am Deaf. He laughed and using his hands made the fingerspelling for “okay.” We had just given birth to a friendship!
We were both completely naked when we met. We had stripped out of our clothes in different restrooms when we arrived at the bar.
From Then Until Now:
From this date in 2009 onward, Jay and I have forged together a friendship that we both treasure and trust, even after he moved away from the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region. He witnessed first-hand the beginning of my live-in relationship with my spouse, Aaron, in 2010 and our marriage, five years later. I have watched the growth of his relationship with his partner, Raheem. Last year, he and Raheem were guest authors here on ReNude Pride on a post entry entitled “BRAT!”
This past year, On September 8, 2022, I received a comment here from The Nubian-Ikigai regarding the posted announcement of Her Late Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, Canada, Jamaica and the Head of the Commonwealth. That comment led to email correspondence between Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai and myself that continues today.
My friendship with Rohan resulted in an interview with him published this past November, 2022, and then with Rohan appearing as a guest author here on World AIDS Day, December 1, 2022! He is now publishing his own blog here and I invite all of you to join me in following his site:
This is an announcement honouring the celebration of “good news” from our government legislators!
The U. S. House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Congress, just passed the Marriage Equality Act. The U. S. Senate (the legislative upper chamber) approved the same measure several weeks earlier. It now is awaiting the signature of President Joseph Biden and then it officially becomes law. This legislation enacts the federal mandate that assures the complete recognition of all interracial marriages and all individual marriage equality unions throughout this country.
My spouse, Aaron, and I are an interracial couple. He’s African-Canadian and I’m Greek. We also are a same gender loving male couple. We were legally married in the Commonwealth of Virginia on August 15, 2015. Our marriage is now totally legal everywhere within this country!
Because of the U. S. Supreme Court’s reversal of its previous legalization of abortions this past June, this action by the Congress prevents an automatic reversal of the marriages of all same gender loving couples and of the marriages of all racially mixed marriages. Multiple Christian extremists organizations have threatened to implement judicial review of marriages, hoping for a “return” for supremacy of the conservative religious concept.
Aaron and I are dancing bare all day today!
Aaron and Roger Peterson-Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Monday, December 12, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Resolutions Solution!”
November 22, 1963: President John F. Kennedy Shot In Dallas, Texas, USA!
The headline above is not even a vague memory for me. I had not even been conceived when that event happened. The only memory that Twin and I have of that day are the recollections that our parents shared with us many years after the tragedy occurred.
Both our father and our mother were born in Greece and emigrated to the USA after the birth of our oldest brother. They lived here as resident aliens and neither of them were naturalized. They returned to Greece, their homeland, after our father retired from his job. All of our brothers returned with them except for Twin and myself.
John F. Kennedy inspired Papa as a presidential candidate and after he was elected into office. We do remember an enlarged photograph of our father addressing voters in our Greek Orthodox church parish hall urging them to support President Kennedy. Although neither of our parents were eligible to vote, Papa was an active supporter of Kennedy and the Democratic party within our Greek community.
Growing up, every year on November 22, we all recall our father’s lamenting his assassination and remembering the many reasons he admired the man. Many times we made family trips to visit Kennedy’s gravesite in Arlington National Cemetery.
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry planned for here is Friday, November 25, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Interview: The Nubian-Ikigai!”
Today, November 11, 1918, at 11:00 a.m., the armistice (cessation of fighting) went into effect thus ending the bloodshed of the Great War – World War I. Four years of fighting were finally over. Millions of civilians and military were dead in the largest war the world had seen, up to that time.
The agreement to enactment of the armistice only stopped the ballistics. The treaty guaranteeing peace wasn’t signed until the following June 28, 1919 – five years to the day after Austria’s Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated which triggered the eruption of the war.
This day became known as Armistice Day throughout the world, so named because of the document that ended the hostilities. In the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth it is designated Remembrance Day in honour of all those who have died in the defence of the Crown. In the USA it is named Veteran’s Day as a tribute to all those who have defended this country.
Because of its profusion in the Flanders region of western Belgium and northern France, where the majority of the battles of the Western Front of the Great War happened, the poppy bloom was convenient to use to lay on the graves of those killed during the conflict. That is the reason for the popular poem commemorating the event and the fallen lives.
In Flanders Fields
by John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
we lived, felt dawn, saw sunsets glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
in Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe;
to you from failing hands we throw
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
in Flanders fields.
“No more slaughter, no more maiming, no more mud and blood and no more killing and disemboweling of horses and mules – which was what I found most difficult to bear. No more of those hopeless dawns with the rain chilling the spirits, no more crouching in inadequate dug-outs scooped out of trench walls, no more dodging of sniper bullets, no more of that terrible shell-fire. No more shovelling up bits of men’s bodies and dumping them into sandbags, no more cries of “stretcher – bear – ERS!” No more of those beastly gas-masks and the odious smell of pear-drops which was deadly to the lumps, and no more writing of those dreadfully difficult letters to the next-of-kin of the dead.” ~ Lieutenant R. G. Dixon
“The Wheels of Darkness” by Lt. R. G. Dixon
A day to honour and to pay tribute. A day to remember and to salute. A day to vow never again.
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Monday, November 14, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “What Is It?”
There have been times in our lives when we have looked upon a picture and wondered: What is the meaning of this? Either the subject or the actual photographer (or perhaps both) are communicating but…what is the message?
Is he bidding farewell?
Is he expressing sorrow?
Sometimes, communicating using body language (expressions, body positioning) is very similar to using sign language (the communication language for us Deaf persons). Body language may not have the grammar and syntax that sign language does but both are visual instead of hearing.
With the popularity of today’s “selfie” photography, think of a message that you would like to convey to others. Consider your options for posing and then capture your pose in a photo. Share your images with friends – fellow bare practitioners if you posed naked – and ask if they understand your meaning or purpose.
Have fun engaging in your body language assignment!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Friday, October 28, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Felipe: Tattoo Costume!”
The significance of this date and designation is based on the design of the original Rainbow Flag for the entire gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer + (GLBTQ+) communities and our shared culture! It is also a feature of our history!
Spirit may be described as a very strong loyalty and/or dedication. Basically it is a vital principle or animating force traditionally believed to be within living beings (humans). It also is considered the aspect of a human being associated with the mind and feelings as distinguished from the physical body – a particular mood or emotional state characterized by animation and vigor.
Observation and Background:
Spirit Day is an annual GLBTQ+ awareness day of recent development. It is currently held on the third Thursday in October in conjunction with GLBTQ+ History Month and in synchronization with Unity Day for younger children. The occasion began in 2010 by Canadian teenager Brittany McMillan in response to a significant number of bullying-related suicides of same gender loving students – the most notorious being Tyler Clementi: a student at Rutgers University in New Jersey, USA, who jumped to his death from the George Washington Bridge – at the age of 18 – on September 22, 2010. On September 19, of that year, Tyler’s collegiate roommate, Dharun Ravi, had posted on Twitter a clip showing Clementi kissing another man in their dormitory room. Neither Tyler nor his partner had knowledge or given permission for the Twitter posting. Ravi and another student were both convicted in court.
Promoted by the Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) from the inaugural Spirit Day, participants wear the colour purple as a visible sign of awareness and support for the campaign. This program is now pursued by many as a move against all bullying in general during what is now determined to be National Bullying Prevention Month (October).
The very first Spirit Day was held on Wednesday, October 20, 2010. It was followed by a Thursday observance on Thursday, October 20, 2011, and then on Friday, October 19, 2012. In 2013, GLAAD made the decision to move the occasion from the actual date to the third Thursday of the month. Since then, it has adhered to the Thursday designation.
The above graphic demonstrates the popularity of the Spirit Day awareness among those of the population (especially teenagers) who strive for conformity. Hopefully, the ideals of freedom from bullying will progress forward from now and into the future.
I remember my very first Spirit Day. Aaron, my spouse, and I had just moved in together – marriage equality in 2010 was just a hope at that time – and when we learned of the event, we together made almost 500 purple awareness ribbons in honour of the occasion. The plan was to evenly divide the ribbons for distribution at his worksite (hospital) and my workplace (university).
We were both uncertain as to the response from our coworkers. Using our home computers, we created an information invitation announcing the free purple ribbon availability for Spirit Day (to combat bullying against GLBTQ+ people – real or suspected). That morning, October, 20, 2010, while we were getting ready to leave for work, before we dressed we both body-painted a purple awareness ribbon on one another’s chests. (This suggestion can be used by bare practitioners everywhere to comply and participate!)
We were both impressed with the reactions at our jobs! Every single ribbon that we had created was taken! This despite the fact that a large number of students at my university and staff at Aaron’s hospital were already wearing the colour purple!
An awesome revolution against sexual orientation bullying!
Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride
Author’s Note: The next post entry for here is planned for Monday, October 24, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Purpose?”