D Dickson, Byron Bay
My partner and I are a local naturist couple and we are dismayed by the portrayal of Tyagarah clothing-optional beach as a seedy and out of control place.
We often spend half or full days down there and our experiences have been blissful and fun. Over the course of a day people come and go but at most times the majority of our fellow beach users have been other couples. We have never been hassled or masturbated at.
We think that negative anecdotal evidence should be seen in the context of this type of positive testimony.
Legal spaces where you can be nude in nature are rare in Australia. Tyagarah is a precious community and national asset that should be protected not banned. All good things can be abused but the answer is not to punish the law-abiding majority because of the illegal actions of a tiny majority.
A win-win is possible if all parties come together and apply analysis and creativity: identify specific problems, brainstorm potential solutions, select and implement the best strategies, evaluate, refine.
The nude beach is a symbol of Byron’s spirit of freedom and self-expression. How we deal with complaints about it should also embody the philosophy of the region: imaginative problem solving rather than prohibition.