Sexually Disoriented

Politics -- not logic -- drove Council to enact the new jury-rigged SOB ordinance

Councilman Judson Robinson, citing his bachelor party experience, protested on the grounds that a moving dancer cannot maintain a set distance from a customer. "Oh, come on, you've been to those places," he chided his colleagues. Rob Todd weighed in with the suggestion that there be two different violations: a three-foot and a six-foot. Eventually, the Council voted 8-to-7 to include the provision. "We really don't want sexual stimulation in these sexually oriented businesses," Boney said eloquently.

Or is it that they don't want sexually oriented businesses at all? After all, no politician wants to be seen as anti-neighborhood or anti-family, especially with the 1997 campaign season about to get under way.

Councilman John Castillo, who said that any law that would take someone's business away seemed "un-American," knew approval of the ordinance was a foregone conclusion. Retiring to the hallway after the debate over the three-foot limit, Castillo gave a clue as to why the ordinance is so drastic. Shaking his head in dismay, he said to Short, "Everybody's running for something. Helen's running for mayor. Lloyd [Kelley]'s running for mayor. Jew Don's trying to be white."

Asked if he thought anyone would move to include a grandfather clause before the vote, Castillo nodded toward the Council chambers and said, in an are-you-kidding tone, "Not in there.

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