Ocean City, Md. — It was only a matter of time before a Maryland city was hauled into court for the shenanigans that led to the municipality to pass an illegal ordinance that forbade public nudity on June 10, 2017.
Chelsea Eline, of Salisbury, who previously used the pseudonym Covington in interactions with local officials and with Delmarvanow.com; Rose MacGregor, of Salisbury; Megan Bryant, of Anne Arundel; Christine Coleman, of Long Island; and Angela Urban, of Pittsburgh, filed a suit in US District Court that claims Ocean City’s emergency ordinance is unconstitutional. Tuesday’s filing in court makes Ms. Eline’s real name public.
The lawsuit seeks a ruling that the ordinance violates five different federal and state laws, including the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution and the Declaration of Rights to the Maryland Constitution.
“This lawsuit is about confirming the legal right of women to be bare-chested, in public, in the same places that men are permitted to be bare-chested, for purposes other than breastfeeding,” the lawsuit reads.
It claims that gender classification does not further government interest, but increases the idea that women are viewed as “inherently sexual objects”, and is tantamount to blatant sexual discrimination.
The defendants named in the suit include the town; Mayor Rick Meehan; Emergency Services Director Joe Theobald, who oversees the beach patrol; and police Chief Ross Buzzuro.
Here’s to hoping that the quartet of women are successful in undoing every last letter of this illegal emergency ordinance.