― Frank Zappa
I enjoy writing this blog, but at the same time I am conscious of how much time it takes to produce and I there have been times when I ask if it is really worth it. The answer is of course 'Yes'.
Striptease has been a lawful activity in this country for almost as long as I have been alive. Quietly and without fuss everyone involved with the scene got on with their lives until Object and their friends and allies decided that we were the cause of just about every challenge facing women today...
If you listen to Object and unquestioningly believe them, strip clubs cause huge localised spikes in violent crime rates, are centres of sexual abuse, are pivotal components in the human trafficking chain, cause women to lose out on promotion at work, a full of gender traitors, populated by rapists and as a result should all be closed forthwith.
The lies and hysteria that populate the media about the scene remind me somewhat of the anti-smoking campaign conducted some years ago. So when I saw the Frank Zappa quote it had a great deal of resonance with me. As a smoker I can accept that my habit may affect other people in a closed environment and therefore I am happy to smoke outside or away from those that object to smoking.
Strip clubs operate indoors, away from the prying eyes of those that would be offended by female nudity. So the Object campaign against something that happens away from the public arena strikes me as being analogous to a non smoker following me outside the pub and complaining about me lighting up.
Despite the weasel wording adopted by certain borough councils to justify their 'Nil Policies', it is clear that the prohibitionist campaign is based upon morality. If the general public could see a stripper on stage through the pub windows, we could accept that it would cause offence, but the public cannot see what happens.Soon the prohibitionist stance changed and it was about people being offended by what they felt went on inside.
Emboldened, the feminist tack evolved and it was then time to accuse the clubs customers of harassing passers by. We saw that Object became somewhat careless with the phrasing of their standard letters to borough councils as they became more desperate to impose their views on society.
Objects arguments are a house of cards and they only take the merest critical examination to collapse. Why does no one ever find it amazing that so many of these apparently abusive customers spend time outside strip clubs, when the the reason for going there is what goes on inside. Why are the cases of harassment and abuse never reported to the police?
In the end it always was and always will be about morality and it is the dancers who are the minority that are being abused, not by men but by a feminist movement whose behaviour and tactics are as deplorable as the patriachy that they rail against. When I see people on the Object Yahoo group denounce someone as a 'DD Bimbo', when I see someone on Mumsnet express the view that anyone from Eastern Europe was probably trafficked, I know who the abusers are.
As Frank Zappa said, when something is reduced to a morality issue, it has no place in any kind of legislation.
So for me, this blog is worth every minute and every hour that I spend on it.
Oh and finally, I have another quote for you.....
I offer my opponents a bargain: if they will stop telling lies about us, I will stop telling the truth about them. ~Adlai Stevenson, campaign speech, 1952