The Naked Teacher Principle Strikes In Texas: The Playboy Variation

"Miss DEWEESE?? Ay Caramba!!!"

“Miss DEWEESE?? Ay Caramba!!!”

This version of the NTP is not especially close to the gray area of ethics, nor is the result surprising, though I expect a lot of teeth gnashing about it because the naked teacher in question will attract a lot of, uh, sympathy.

Dallas’s school district has apparently fired Cristy Nicole Deweese, 21, a Spanish teacher for the city’s Townview Magnet High School. Less than three years ago she posed in various provocative positions and states of undress for Playboy, in its February 2011 issue. That magazine is still available, but more to the point, the photos are easily available online. Naturally some students found them, and the core tenets of the Naked Teacher Principle had been triggered.

The Naked Teacher Principle states:

“A secondary school teacher or administrator (or other role model for children) who allows pictures of himself or herself to be widely publicized, as on the web, showing the teacher naked or engaging in sexually provocative poses, cannot complain when he or she is dismissed by the school as a result.”

I won’t keep you in unnecessary suspense. Deweese is almost dead center in the middle of the NTP. A teacher of young men and women cannot be a role model or authority figure when accurate visions of her naughty bits are dancing through the heads of her hormonally-active charges, who, in the case of high schoolers, are not that much younger than she is. This might be less of a concern if the teaching profession were more responsible and effective in keeping sexual predators from joining its ranks, but as the tally in any month of the year shows us, this is not the case.

The past 12 months have been a useful period in the annals of the NTP.  In May, we examined what I described as the far pole in inappropriate and intolerable Naked Teacher conduct, the former porn star teacher variation. The (now ex-) teacher was named Stacy Halas, and I wrote at the time of her professional demise...

“Halas was fired in April from her job as a biology teacher at Haydock Intermediate School in Oxnard after online videos of her starring in hardcore pornography were found by teachers and students. Of course she was fired. She should have been fired simply for not letting her employers know about the fact that students would be able to find photos and videos of her naked and happily performing sex acts that are banned from network TV, and some zoos. I always like to have the poles set in matters like the Naked Teacher Principle, and the case of Stacie Halas/Tiffany 6 neatly gives us one pole. Where is the opposite pole, the point where the teacher’s web photograph just barely (no pun intended) activates that NTP? I’m sure it will be along shortly.”

It hasn’t arrived yet, but a useful exercise did in the controversy involving Olivia Sprauer, a 9th grade English teacher in Florida. She was fired for secretly moonlighting not only as a model for Victoria’s Secret bathing suits, but also for offering her services to photographers for various kinds of erotic photo sessions.

I compared Sprauer’s qualifications for the NTP with the case of Tiffany Webb,  a 37 year-old  guidance counselor in the  New York City public schools who was fired in 2012, despite excelling at her job for 12 years, because photos she posed for as a 20-year-old lingerie model turned up on the internet. The verdict on Webb was that she was blameless, and that the Naked Teacher Principle did not and should not apply to her, because:

1. She was not naked, though the photos didn’t leave much to the imagination.

2. It was 17 years ago, and there should be some statute of limitations on the NTP, one that is less than 17 years.

3. Webb did not post the pictures, or pose for them when the internet was as ubiquitous and intrusive as it is today.

4. The photos were not posted under proper authorization from her or anyone else. Many have been photo-shopped.

5. Webb fully disclosed her lingerie model past to the Board of Education when she was hired.

6. Unlike most cases of the Naked Teacher Principle, the teacher’s judgment, motives and sense of responsibility are not in question.

None of these mitigating factors were present in the Sprauer case, and they don’t apply to Cristy, either. Three years is a long way from 17, and even an 18 year old would know in 2011 that a photo session in Playboy was likely to be web-bound. Most of all, there is nothing I can find in any of the news accounts that Deweese gave her employers, when they hired her, a heads-up that this might happen. If she did, the Dallas school board needs to fire the fools who did the hiring, and they may have a legal problem ridding themselves of Cristy too.

Absent that, Cristy is a classic victim of the Naked Teacher Principle. Nothing prevents  comely maidens and strapping lads from showing the assets nature bestowed on them in all their glory to photographers, art galleries, gawkers, consumers or the world, and they have my blessings. They just can’t do it and expect to teach teenagers or younger without hearing snickering in the back row, and if they can’t figure that out in this Internet age, they are too dim to teach anyway.

Sorry, Cristy.

_____________________________

Pointer: CNN

Sources:Dallas Observer 1, 2NY Daily News

30 thoughts on “The Naked Teacher Principle Strikes In Texas: The Playboy Variation

  1. Published on Oct 9, 2013
    Cristy Nicole Deweese teacher porn 21 playboy “Naked Outdoors” and modeled in a simulated lesbian sex scene, but now one former Playboy model-turned-teacher just wants to be an educator — and at least one parent seems to have a problem with that.

    Even while Cristy Nicole Deweese was Playboy’s “Coed of the Month” in February 2011, she intended to become a Spanish teacher. She discussed her future plans in a sexy, innuendo-laden video that was produced around that time.

    Deweese, who modeled under the name “Cristy Nicole,” was 18 when she posed for Playboy. She’s 21 now, and has since achieved her goal of becoming a Spanish teacher, landing a job at a Dallas-area magnet school. But according to the Dallas Morning News, her modeling past isn’t sitting well with at least one parent.

  2. Comments and questions for you Jack.

    Many people think that there is nothing wrong about the human body (e.g., beaches in Europe) and that not all nudity is sexual. We have a joint friend who frequently swims naked — whether he is alone or in a group. That’s just who he is. It’s not for me, but it doesn’t disturb me anymore. Assuming that nudity becomes more accepted in the US, my guess is that your NTP will begin to crumble.

    Is it the nudity or the sexual aspect? What if there were photos online of her breastfeeding a child? Or is she publicly fed her child at a school function? I was always the hide-in-the-ladies-room-with-a-blanket-type, but public breast feeding is more and more common now and has a militant support group — liberal and conservative.

    Do you make an “artistic” decision in your analysis at all? What if she posed nude for an artist, and that artist was able to display it in a prominent gallery?

    I’m on the fence about this but only because the conduct happened before she became a teacher. Assuming her behavior is unseemly, it was in the past. And everyone knows that the maturity gap between 18 and 21 is more like 20 years, not 3. Lots of people engage in improper or even illegal behavior in their pasts and they go on to become successful, moral, law-abiding citizens. If she did this while employed as a teacher, I agree — boot her — at least using today’s social norms. But to deny this woman ever the opportunity to earn a living as a teacher (or perhaps using a 17-year SOL) because she once posed for nude pictures seems unethical to me. And, the sad and ironic thing is, she probably did it in the first place to pay for that college teacher’s degree.

    • The web photos aren’t in the past—they’re in the present. The artistic angle is irrelevant. If you’re planning on teaching kids, don’t leave your naked or sexually provocative photos where they might end up in front of a student. If you have, give your employer notice so they can know what the risks are. It’s not unreasonable or uncomplicated. This woman knew she was interested in teaching and still posed. She’s a fool. I have no sympathy for her at all.

      • But Jack, in Europe, they are way cooler with laid back sexual attitudes. In Europe Jack!!!!! (To be read with starry eyes and hearts spinning around the head)

        That’s where I generally stop reading cultural revolutionary “no barriers” lifestyle arguments.

        • But Jack, in Europe, they are way cooler with laid back sexual attitudes. In Europe Jack!!!!! (To be read with starry eyes and hearts spinning around the head)
          ************
          As an American who actually lived in Europe, I’m here to tell you the rumors of nudity are grossly overstated.

      • Okay — but how far do you take this? Pictures always are forever now that we are in the digital age. You posit that 17 years is too much and 3 years is too short – but how can have a SOL here given that kids always will be able to find those photos? Does this come down to the fact that the teacher still looks like the girl in the photo given her age? If so, I’m not sure that I’m comfortable with that test.

        • The school’s responsibility is to the experience of their students, their education and the efficiency and judgment of the teachers they hire, not to consider how much to blame the specific teacher who wrecked her own or his own image on line may be. You should read the rather long list of variations on this, but the bottom line is that one is responsible for who one presents himself or herself on line. Do I think a large number of current teens will find that they have limited their job opportunities by posting photos of themselves online drunk, naked, or doing idiotic things? Sure do. Tough. Similar photos will stop them being elected to office or getting hired by the FBI. Tough. The effect of such photos doesn’t change, even though the ease or posting them and the pressure to do so does. Bottom line—if a student is fantasizing about a graphic image of a teacher rather than thinking about her job and her actual relationship to him, she is handicapped and diminished, and he is vulnerable if she’s a predator.

          • Um … Jack — her male students were fantasizing about her well before those pictures came to light. I do agree with you about kids though. The parents need to be doing a better job policing their online behavior — but I would include in that letting their sons surf porn.

  3. Some things just are. Not teaching after posing provocatively and having the pictures available for those you teach to view is one of those things.

  4. I am less on the fence about this now than Beth says she is. I think her closing comments of Oct 15 at 5:04 pm are persuasive. Nudity, and persons whose images of their nudity are publicly available, deserve less stigmatization no matter why, how or when the nudity is manifested.

    Honestly: The hang-ups about nudity, and posing nude, in the final analysis are nothing more than reflections of insidious re-packagings of rationalizations for all kinds of bigotry and backward discrimination. I am not “romanticizing Europe” here. I am envisioning an America where nudity is not some exploited prisoner of titillation industry – an America where erotic drives are neither so easily excited and increased, nor presumed to be easily excitable and enhanced, by nudity alone (or even, by observing “performances” by nudes).

    Nor am I advocating deliberate force-feeding of overdoses of nudity to the public, not any more than I am advocating such of eroticism. I am advocating recognition of how American culture (such as it is – I always feel obligated to include that caveat, “such as it is”) already suffers from exaggerated exclusivity of linkage of nudity (and performances involving nudity) to eroticism. From there, flows all manner of self-righteous disrespect. I think the culture is promoting a perverse, “moldy rule,” to wit: “I demand that you treat me only the way I want to be treated, while I treat you only the way I want to treat you.” That is a signature attitude of a narcissist.

    For example (a theory): De-program the delight of voyeurism, and not only will there be fewer voyeurs, but those voyeurs who remain will be less likely to delight themselves with their peculiar lust – which would be a net positive for the voyeurs and their fellow pilgrims.

    • Nothing in the post has anything to do with “hang-ups.” Sexual images sexualize, and teachers and authority figures should not be sex objects—when they are, the educational process suffers. It’s pretty simple, and, I think, obvious and undeniable.

      • I think you’re camping too comfortably with confirmation bias. Hang-ups are the core justifications for the NTP. Sexual beings sexualize images; nature is involved, yes, but so is nurture. The NTP confirms the existence of the hang-ups, and nurtures their perpetuation.

        “A teacher of young men and women cannot be a role model or authority figure when accurate visions of her naughty bits are dancing through the heads of her hormonally-active charges, who, in the case of high schoolers, are not that much younger than she is.” What, besides hindsight bias on an anecdotal basis, confirms that?

        The educational process presumably suffers when sexual thoughts are dancing through the heads of teachers and students (perhaps unless, and except when, the subject is specifically sex education). But I now reject the contention that practice of the NTP makes any marginal difference in avoiding that specific vulnerability of the educational process. If there were not Playboy images of the teacher readily available for horny teens to circulate, then eventually there would be a horny teen or two, or more, who would exercise desperately their talents at sexually objectifying their teacher with photoshopped images of her.

        We can clamor for authority figures to do their part not to encourage anyone to view them as sex objects, but the ultimate responsibility for viewing someone as a sex object is the viewer’s. (So maybe it’s a good thing that I once again viewed “Eyes Wide Shut” this weekend; God Knows I never would have chosen OB/GYN, even if it, besides baseball, had been the only other activity that ever could have gotten me to second base.)

        • Utter nonsense. A teacher allows a photo like one over the post to be widely circulated, and the sexualization is all in the mind of the student? “Hang up” was how the Sixties chaos mongers excused legitimate social objections to harmful behavior. You know—what’s with the “hang up” over promiscuous sex, man? Adultery? Sex with children! Spitting at pigs!

          If you reject the NTP, then you must allow 7th Grade teachers to dress for class in mini-skirts and push up bras. After all, it’s just a hang-up and in the minds of those 13 year olds. You do recall that we don’t hold minors to have adult control over such matters—hence statutory rape. Or is that just a hang-up too?

          • Nor does your distinction between current naked cyber behavior and past behavior make any sense. If it’s serious enough to warrant dismissal when contemporaneous with employment as a teacher, why isn’t it also worth avoiding prior to such employment, since the effects on the students and their education is identical.

            • “Nor does your distinction between current naked cyber behavior and past behavior make any sense.”

              Gotcha! Where did I make “my” distinction?? YOU made that distinction. CURRENT naked cyber behavior IS serious enough to warrant dismissal when contemporaneous with employment as a teacher, depending on the circumstances. But not in every case. If a teacher is sending porn images to students, he or she is a goner. But if a teacher appears in images that result from his or her chosen employment separate from teaching, and students just happen to find the images, then no, that teacher does not deserve automatic dismissal. I just don’t buy the “effects on the students and their education” argument anymore.

              • You don’t have to buy it. It’s factual. Deny what you like. What other role models and authority figures do you think it’s appropriate to have seen in leather, pasties and lick me poses? Judges? Senators? What earthly difference does it make why or for what such images are available? You honestly think a teacher with stripper and soft porn photos on the web can command respect as a professional? OK…you’re deluded. Nothing I can do about that.

                By the way—the NTP doesn’t say she has to be fired…only that she has nobody to blame but herself if she is, and it is fair and appropriate to can her, if that’s the decision. If she hides it when she’s hired, she must be fired. If the school knows and hires her anyway, obviously they shouldn’t.

          • “A teacher allows a photo like one over the post to be widely circulated, and the sexualization is all in the mind of the student?”

            Umm, yeah. You were expecting me to defend the Flip Wilson Excuse (“The devil made me do it!”)? Or the Son of Sam Excuse (“My neighbor’s dog told me to shoot.”)? Lady’s showing her bare butt – so what? She could be advertising eye make-up, or hair straightener, or tanning lotion, for all anyone knows; the nudity is just there to help draw attention. While we’re re-defining marriage, let’s re-define modesty, too, and take nudity out of the “immodesty” definition. How DARE we know and ever appreciate how our bodies look! ONLY sex partners are supposed to see THAT, and ONLY about each other. That explains the federal government’s mad dash to fund and complete the Bots for Butts program, to properly remove the human from the loop, and to be ready with an army of robots in case of any shortages of graduates from schools of proctology. Pity the poor primates that get bred for subjects for the rubber glove tests!

            “If you reject the NTP, then you must allow 7th Grade teachers to dress for class in mini-skirts and push up bras.”

            Now you’re going from hung-up to unhinged. See what I said earlier about titillation industry. No, I’d be happy to see 7th grade teachers all wearing burquas and opaque sunglasses, with their feet covered-up by chicken feathers. But, of course, we dare not ignite the lustful feelings of young chicken feather fetishists. Jack, it matters little what a teacher wears; students (and teachers) who are pre-conditioned to objectify are going to objectify. What matters is that students (and teachers) learn and practice what you call adult control. Pandora’s Box has been opened, and no amount of pre-opening nudity-suppression can be done, but the duty to learn and teach adult control will always be there.

  5. We can clamor for authority figures to do their part not to encourage anyone to view them as sex objects, but the ultimate responsibility for viewing someone as a sex object is the viewer’s.
    ***********
    I don’t know about that.
    The whole purpose of something like Playboy is to print pictures that display women as sexual objects.

    I think with American attitudes being such as they are, you are not going to get a kid to respect a teacher or let’s say a cop after they’ve seen them posed nude in a sexually provocative fashion.
    A 7th grade male wouldn’t be able to stop laughing.

    • I’ll take the risk of putting on my feminist hat for a moment even though I can already imagine the responses — the only reason she got paid in the past for posing for these pictures is that men will pay to see it. If her behavior was lewd, then the men’s behavior in viewing it is equally so. But, hey let’s fire the woman. I don’t blame the kids, but I will blame their parents, because kids have no business looking at any porn.

      And before Jack argues that his analysis applies equally to men, I will concede that point. But given the higher demand for female porn, I think his NTP has a disparate effect on women.

  6. Just another observation on nudity attitudes in the US:

    Read the viewer comments sometime on a review of a film that has a lot of full frontal male nudity in it.
    It will be angry MALE viewers who normally have no problem with female nudity.
    They will insist it is an obscenity.

    You figure that one out.

  7. Teachers should not be sex objects. Students should not find any teacher attractive. The solution: only hire ugly teachers. Or maybe we just give our kids some credit and allow them to deal with it, let it go, and move on. They could probably do this easier than most adults.

    • Since you prefer sarcasm to honest debate, well, sure, that’s a great idea. We all know impulse control and restraint of sexual urges are special strengths of teens, and that they are especially responsible and rational bout such matters…far more than they will be as adults, who aren’t great in these areas either. Good point. Useful. Bravo.

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