Log In

Reset Password

Like Marmite, letter exposes chasm in public opinion

Public opinion is split over a Letter to the Editor complaining about too much flesh on show on the streets of Bermuda (File photograph)

When Antony Siese wrote his letter complaining about too much flesh on show on Bermuda’s streets, he could hardly have anticipated just how it would split opinion.

“It appears that the dress standards for Bermuda are slipping. This past week I saw two women — on separate days — walking around Hamilton in a swimsuit. I would think such attire would not be allowed in their home towns,” he wrote.

The Letter to the Editor prompted hundreds of comments on social media and became the most-read story on The Royal Gazette’s website — with more than 7,000 hits (and counting).

Rather like Marmite, it exposed a chasm in public opinion — from “get over the conservatism”, to “ah yes, the Bermuda, the land of ‘No’.”

In the “pro-letter” corner, comments included: “I am not a conservative person, but I do have a gag reflex.

“I have no desire to see someone’s a** cheeks hanging out in front of me while I’m going about my errands. Particularly given the styles of today’s (women’s) bathing attire — they leave nothing to the imagination. (And I’m not suggesting it has anything to do with a person’s level of fitness; I’m not into fat-shaming.)

“At the beach, though — OK, fine. You do you. (And I have to wonder — are these people walking into stores and restaurants like that? Even more to my point. And if they’re not allowed into establishments in such a state of undress, cool. In which case, why would we advocate a tourism culture where people can’t spend dollars in local businesses??).”

One person added: “I think it’s important to keep up certain standards for the greater good … in that there’s a time and a place for some things.

“I’m not so sure this is about policing a woman’s body — I mean, do you want to see grandpa shuffling through town in a Speedo?

“Or would you rather he cover that up at least until he’s back poolside? And what if he tells you not to police his body? Same thing … it’s a slippery slope.”

Another said: “Having standards is what keeps Bermuda charming and appealing. If people want to appear in public naked, there are plenty of other countries that will allow them to do this. Please, don’t consider lowering standards to this tacky behaviour.”

One put it succinctly: “Well, for what it's worth, beach wear is for the beach......”

What the letter said

It appears the dress standards for Bermuda are slipping. This past week I saw two women — on separate days — walking around Hamilton in a swimsuit. I would think such attire would not be allowed in their home towns.

Gone are the days when the police would measure the shorts of visitors. While I realise the police have better things to do, the traffic wardens are on the streets and maybe they should be given the authority to issue tickets to persons who are not properly dressed.

Can we see a return to some reasonable decorum while walking around Hamilton and St George?

In the “so what” corner, there was equal outrage, with one comment saying: “I guess some people would rather see police tape, wounded bodies, and blood stained roads.

“There is so much more important things to worry about on this tiny island. Get a grip people!!!”

Another person said that people “should be proud of our bodies and not have to resort to covering them up for the prudes in our society”.

Being prudish also cropped up in this comment: “Don't be such a prude! Are we not known for our beaches and crystal blue waters? Maybe they we going to or coming from the beach?

“As long as all the bits are covered and they have shoes on leave people alone.”

While another directed their comment to the Mr Siese saying: “Not sure what century you live in but it is 2024. You want to go back to the police officer with the tape measure and the length of the shorts?”

One other person pleaded to “let the tourists be!”, adding: “Let them have a good time and come back over and over. Who cares they are wearing a swim suit.”

• Do you have an opinion on this? Write a Letter to the Editor — e-mail letters@royalgazette.com

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published June 20, 2024 at 7:57 am (Updated June 20, 2024 at 7:57 am)

Like Marmite, letter exposes chasm in public opinion

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon