In today’s society, people will tell you that what you’re wearing defines who you are or what kind of person you are. If you’re covered up, you’re a nice, respectful, young individual. And if you’re not, you’re a whore, slut, etc. People shame others because of their appearance disregarding the fact that they could actually be a decent human being. What matters is whether the individual feels comfortable in what they’re wearing. However, there will always be hurtful behavior which is usually done to women and by men and surprisingly, by women as well.

As a Muslim woman, I am told to cover up, which I don’t necessarily mind, but to think modesty is the only way to get respect is wrong and we need to stop teaching young girls that. There is nothing wrong with modesty and there is nothing wrong with nudity. The two are basic lifestyle choices which depend on the person. This stigma against the two needs to be stopped. If we don’t stop it, then who will? The next generation will learn from our behavior and shame others. We will never live in peace if this occurs.

In shows like “Orange is the New Black” and “Game of Thrones,” nudity is shown a lot. Some viewers out there have repeatedly said that they refuse to watch the show because of that sole reason because it disgusts them. Thoughts like these are hurtful because our bodies are art. Our nudity is art. Why can’t our choices be respected?

The “FreeTheNipple” movement is something that was created to encourage women empowerment. It shows that women should not be ashamed of their bodies because each one of us are beautiful. If you are bothered by the topic of nudity, then simply refrain from it. Don’t comment injurious things. You will not benefit from it; no one will.

In other cases, some men and women are also shamed because of their modesty. Because they don’t like to show their skin, they are made fun of. People have to understand that just because someone doesn’t like showing skin in public does not mean they are ashamed of their body and how they look. Maybe they are saving themselves for a special someone and that is perfectly fine. Also forcing someone to strip when you know they’re uncomfortable is sexual harassment. In third world countries, this is fairly common and not okay.

Understanding that there are different people in the world can make a big difference. Understand that there are people who want to show skin without being called horrible names. Understand that there are people who don’t want to show their body and they should’ve feel ashamed for their decision. The world would be a much better place if people learn to respect others decisions. And remember,modesty empowers some and nudity empowers others – and there is nothing wrong with either.