North Carolina has a new bill that will make it a felony for a woman to expose her nipple or areola.
But not to worry! If you're concerned that your summer camisole might slip and propel you into prison, Republican state Rep. Tim Moore says wimmenz can protect themselves from a life of crime by slapping a little duct tape on the business end of their womanly feed bags.
The state House Judiciary Committee C approved House Bill 34, which makes it a Class H felony to purposefully expose "private parts" for the "purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire."
The bill expands the state's definition of "private parts" to include a woman's "nipple, or any portion of the areola."
Democratic state Rep. Annie Mobley said she worried that women wearing "questionable fashions” could be prosecuted under the new rules.
But Committee Chairwoman Rep. Sarah Steven (R) suggested that women could use pasties or nipple coverings just to be safe.
“They’d be good to go” with nipple coverings, Stevens said.
"You know what they say, duct tape fixes everything," Republican state Rep. Tim Moore agreed.
Republican state Rep. Rayne Brown told lawmakers that she was co-sponsoring the bill because activists had held a topless women's rights rally in Asheville last summer, where as many as a dozen women bared their breasts (NSFW video here).
Although Brown's district is 100 miles from Asheville, she felt it was important to act before women tried to assert their rights again by going topless at another rally.
“You’ve got local governments passing ordinances to protect themselves from just this thing,” she explained. “These folks don’t need to be doing that, but they do it because they’re not sure about the law."
Under the proposed law, women could spend up to six months in jail for a first offense. "Incidental" nipple exposure by breastfeeding mothers would be exempt from the law.