TODAY | November 20, 2012
>>> if you've ever been to san francisco you know it's a place where pretty much anything goes and late err today that might change a bit when the san francisco board of supervisors plans to vote for a ban on public nudity . nbc's mike taibbi is nude there.
>> sorry, looking at the preview monitor. take it away.
>> reporter: not a chance, matt and savannah. i know you're trying to hold on to your audience of women and children so that won't be happening. what they are going to be voting on is a new ordinance to ban public nudity . hard to imagine in this city, as savannah said, it all started in the castro district which was the epicenter of the gay liberation movement where some are saying too many men have been liberating themselves of their clothing in ways that are over the line. lloyd fishback says he's been walking around totally nude for years and that others have been gathering daily at this castro district plaza. a dozen or more men on many days, minus their clothing, for the same reasons he does it. why would anybody want to walk around buck naked in public?
>> freedom. acceptance, freedom. to be free.
>> reporter: this is a neighborhood whose mantra of live and let live does invite free expression .
>> i'm like, whatever. bodies are bodies.
>> reporter: but other residents and merchants of the district have had enough claiming the parade of the unclothed is bad for business.
>> i'm getting letters from customers who regret that they can no longer shop here because they can't bring their children down here.
>> reporter: local community groups pressed for the new law because, as rob cox puts it, a public park is no place for private parts.
>> reporter: and it became more about exhibitionism than nudity and it became a nudist colony here and one of the few public spaces for the neighborhood. most of the people who we spoke to who support the ban have nothing against nudity per se , even public nudity but there seems to be a but attached, pun intended, from just about all of this. this supervisor wrote the ordinance and held off for two years until he was convinced that all that nudity invades the privacy of the public unwillingly exposed to such conduct.
>> i waited for almost two years because i didn't want to go there, but it got to the point where i felt i had no choice that. it had gotten to the extreme is that for years public nudity has been a fact of san francisco life at parades, festivals and other events. that won't change. but this might. superintendent weiner says he's got the votes to get the ordinance passed which means if you're looking for that all-over tan, matt and savannah, maybe the middle of the cass try district is not the place to get it. back to you.
>> mike, thanks very much. a very fine line between freedom and in some cases a little bit of creepy exhibitionism.
>> where do you keep your wallet?
>> in your hand, right with your cell phone.
>> a murse.
>> remember we had a little incident with public nudity on the "today" show back in 2006 . here's what happened.
>> really, hot and muggy. it's getting dark now and it could rain at any moment but as you can see we've still got a nice