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    Taylor Lautner, Put Your Shirt On!

    Taylor Lautner, New Moon Kimberley French/Summit Entertainment
    Counterpunch

    We are not prudes. We are simply scared shirtless.

    With every new still of Taylor Lautner and his tersely torsoed Twilight-affiliated wolf pack, we grow concerned that our nation's impressionable young men are taking notes—and thinking about taking off their T-shirts.

    What's the problem with New Moonings, you ask? Why can't guys go wild like a Joe Francis DVD? What's the downside?

    Oh, nothing. Nothing at all. Except all sorts of terrible things, up to and including economic ruin and wrinkles. And not necessarily in that order.

    See, as we researched the potential impact of Lautner-inspired shirtlessness sweeping the nation with next week's New Moon release, we were convinced anew that clothes aren't just for hiding unsightly flab.

    Dr. Gregory Buford, a Colorado-based plastic surgeon, pointed out that a shirt, combined with sunblock and shade, helps prevent sun damage, if not skin cancer. And that going topless doesn't. ("You're just courting extra problems," Buford said.)

    Dr. D.J. Basu, a medical expert for JustAnswer, confirmed our suspicion that going shirtless in late November isn't the wisest move for residents of the Northern Hemisphere: "If somebody goes shirtless, the risk of hypothermia is pretty high," he said. "It's not a good idea."

    Chris Lindland, of the online pants-seller Cordarounds, spoke of nothing less than the collapse of retail fashion. Said Lindland: "The less clothing people wear—they could put us out of business. I'm afraid of this, obviously."

    And while Lindland's tongue was in his cheek, obviously, you shouldn't laugh. In 1934, Clark Gable went undershirtless in It Happened One Night, and the undershirt industry nearly went under—or so the oft-told story goes.  

    At least Lindland is in pants. Unlike Peter Crawfurd, who's in shirts via ShirtsMyWay.com. "We thrive on people wearing their dress shirts," Crawfurd said in an email. "And the last thing we want is a trend going in the direction of being shirtless!"

    Ah, but that's exactly where we're headed if Lautner keeps making shirtlessness so attractive. 

    We're all for fitness. We're all for pride in fitness. But we draw the line at potentially dangerous Matthew McConaughey-ness.

    Enough with not-enough. Button up the flannel, Taylor Lautner, before somebody gets hurt.

    Besides, you're just making all your pasty-skinned vampire friends look bad.

    ________

    See your favorite creatures of the night hit the road in our New Moon World Tour Madness gallery.

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