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April 27th, 2010
01:26 PM ET

Mayor: No thongs allowed

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[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/27/t1.generic.beach.bikini.jpg width=300 height=169]

Gabriel Falcon
AC360° Writer

If you plan on going to Kure Beach, in North Carolina, bring your sunscreen and shades, but please leave your thong behind.

The seaside community has adopted a zero tolerance policy on anyone wearing the 'barely-there bikini' by the shore.

“You can do what you want to in your own space,” said Mayor Dean Lambeth, “but for public decency keep it off the public beach.”

Mayor Lambeth told CNN he and the town supervisors last week unanimously approved the ordinance banning the skimpy bathing wear.

“Everything we do is family oriented. We like the small town atmosphere,” Lambeth said.

The decision to forbid thongs was triggered by a couple’s recent inquiry about spending their honeymoon in Kure Beach, Lambeth said. According to the mayor, the couple wanted to know if they could wear thongs. The man thought the town’s policy on the matter was ambiguous,” Lambeth said. After consulting with the police chief, he determined the ordinance should be amended to better address the issue.

Section 12-32 of the Code of the Town of Kure Beach, which was adopted on April 22, now reads as follows:

“It shall be unlawful for any person being naked or insufficiently clothed thereby causing improper exposure of his or her person to bathe or swim in the Atlantic Ocean or sun bathe within the boundaries of the town limits or being so naked or insufficiently clothed to bath or swim in any other public or exposed place within the town jurisdiction. Thong bathing suits or similar attire are specifically prohibited.”

Anyone wearing a thong on the beach will be fined $25.

Lambeth said reaction to the no-thong policy has been overwhelmingly positive. “I have gotten probably 100 emails from all over the u.s. supporting our stance,” he told CNN. “I’m getting calls from New York, California that they are glad somebody is finally taking a stand for public decency.”

Lambeth, who said Kure Beach’s population swells from 2,500 to 11,000 in the summer, described the town as “nice, slo-mo, and conservative.”

“We’re just a small southern community and that’s how we’re going to keep it,” he said.

He also suspected the decision on the thongs could end up in court. “You can file a suit – the way this country is leaning so far left, it wouldn’t surprise me,” he said. “They want to challenge it? They want to spend the money? Go for it.”

Lambeth said people can wear thongs in their homes and backyards. And with his policy in place, he told CNN he’s content.

“I’m sitting out here looking at the ocean and don't see a damn thong in sight.”

For more crime coverage go to cnn.com/crime.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Crime & Punishment • Gabe Ramirez
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. ArmyVet

    Decency!! Yes, at last! I assume they are also banning really hairy men. It's an affront to public decency to see them without shirts. Large men with small suits too please.

    April 27, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
  2. poppysinoz

    Its about time someone took a stand about what people wear in public beaches i have a fairly good body still for a 49 yo mom and i just dont want to see every inch of anothers body hanging out when walking by or laying there near me, keep some stuff to yourself ladies, ya really do look nasty when thats all your wearing and for guys w.pants on ground lol I am really sick of seeing your nasty boxers too ! so hats off to mayor !!

    April 27, 2010 at 3:29 pm |
  3. Denise

    It's about time someone took a stand on this issue. Bare behinds in public are gross. Keep them private....PLEASE.

    April 27, 2010 at 3:22 pm |
  4. Smith

    After reading this, I REALLY want to wear a thong there, just to upset all those prudes and ruin their day with my awesome exposed ass!! The $25 is worth it to me if it really upsets people that bad. Ya know, you don't HAVE to stare and not EVERYONE is a freaking family person! Let me see that thong baby!

    April 27, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  5. bebe

    Where is the tea party? I guess this is governement is our skin.

    April 27, 2010 at 2:48 pm |
  6. Dora

    If the city is going to pay for the everyone's bathing suit I guess that could make a point. But, what ever happened to freedom of expression? What is indecent to one person is decent to the next. The funny part is that most conservatives are complaining about big government, and if this isn't government meddling with people's life at a very basic level, I don't know what is.

    April 27, 2010 at 2:41 pm |
  7. Kathleen Leary

    My politics is considered far left. I dress conservatively. Believe in marriage (sure equality). Go to church. This has nothing to do with my politics. These are my values and what I would describe as public decency. The town did not have to describe themselves as conservative for this point. Just say that you don't want barely dressed people on you beach.

    April 27, 2010 at 2:19 pm |
  8. Susan Lewis

    It's about time. What you wear to your private pool is your business. I am tired of people walking around with everything hanging out, it's just disgusting.

    April 27, 2010 at 2:14 pm |
  9. Matt

    That last quote seems to me to have more than just the public decency at heart. Maybe his father's village was attacked by a marauding party of vicious thongs.

    Also his comment about the country "leaning so far to the left" seems out of place as well. This is a town guideline, not a national policy. Frankly I don't think anyone will care what these prudes want to do in their podunk town. I certainly don't.

    April 27, 2010 at 2:03 pm |