Great points all!

You know, this is a perennial issue. Women not shaving was a pretty big thing during the 1960s counterculture movement, though the fashion died out again by the mid 70s, I think.

I wasn’t paying attention because I was a child, but then in the 1980s, I spent 5 years living in Berlin, the first part of my early adulthood.

I quickly learned that German women were not very likely to shave arm pit hair or leg hair. Given the German propensity for sunbathing in the nude in public parks, this fact was very obvious.

I was in the US Air Force, so I happened to notice how other young American men reacted to German women’s body hair. To say attitudes were paternalistic and condescending would be an understatement.

Most American men seemed all but personally insulted, as if they thought all women needed to make themselves attractive to men based on whatever beauty ideals those men happened to hold.

Meanwhile, Berlin society just marched right along and American servicemen either got used to it or they didn’t.

Most, it seemed to me then, got used to it. Even forgot about it.

Perhaps it’s time for that over here in the states.

Written by

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot. jamesfinnwrites@gmail.com

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