PORTLAND -- The Portland man who stripped naked at the Portland International Airport last month pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a charge of indecent exposure and asked for a full trial.
John Brennan shed his clothes in frustration last month after a security wand detected traces of nitrate on his clothing at PDX.
Background: Man strips during TSAsearch at PDX
I believe I am within my rights as an Oregonian to use this form of protest, this form of free speech really, and to assist the TSA in their screening process, said Brennan.
Wednesday in court, Brennan declined an offer to admit guilt, instead insisting on a full trial.
Outside the courthouse, Brennan said he's grown upset with what he believes is a government pattern of taking away the rights of citizens.
Stripping naked, he said, was his way of pushing back.
It was just these particular circumstances. I had let the TSA know that I felt my privacy was being violated by pat downs in the past. And it was this particular threshold, this new condition in my search, that I just thought, what else can I do, Brennan explained.
Brennan said he has been worried from some time about the erosion of civil liberties in America and decided it was time to make a statement. He'd been to Portland's clothing-optional beaches before and thought that approach would work perfectly for his message.
Its not my style to be loud and obnoxious with it. I believe that I'm just exercising my civil rights in my protest. And the fact that it is spectacular to some people is secondary in terms of my rights, he said.