Matthew X profrv at nex.net.au
Tue May 11 05:59:26 PDT 1999

Vegas Dancers to March September 1
The issue's so important, former dancer Treasure Brown has decided to 
postpone her wedding because of it. The issue being that of lap dancing and 
the fact that as of Sept. 1, ordinances go into effect in Clark County, 
Nevada prohibiting it. Clark County is better known as Las Vegas. Here's 
what happened a couple of weeks ago and which prompted Brown, who likes to 
refer to herself as an "undercover lobbyist" to form an alliance known as 
WEADS, Women and Entertainers Anti-Defamation Society.
 From the Gene Files: Vegas Imposes Lap Dance Rules
Bugsy Siegel would be turning over in his grave to know what a pussy ass 
town Las Vegas has become. Clark County commissioners want to impose rules 
on lap dancing. Speakers in opposition to the measure said strip clubs are 
not the dens of prostitution described by police, and they reminded 
commissioners that this is Sin City, after all, not Disneyland. Other 
opponents of the ordinance said lap dancing puts food on their table and 
restricting it would jeopardize their livelihood.
"How will I eat? How will I support my children?" stripper Brianna Wildman 
asked through tears. But in the end, commissioners voted 5-1 to adopt lap 
dance rules. Though they were far less stringent than those introduced two 
weeks ago. That proposal would have prohibited a dancer's groin from ever 
touching a customer's body. The rules commissioners passed yesterday allow 
dancers to grind against a customer's leg, but bar more intimate contact.
"The industry has worked with me not in creating a deal, but a compromise," 
said Commissioner Yvonne Atkinson Gates, who proposed the ordinance.
A cluster of strip club attorneys had come to the commission meeting 
prepared to argue that the proposed ordinance would put their clients out 
of business. They changed their minds after reading the new draft.
"When they started out saying you've got to be 6 feet from the customer, 
and you end up with the girl being able to grind against his leg, you've 
come a long way," said attorney Peter Christiansen, who represents Jaguars, 
the $15 million strip club that recently opened on West Desert Inn Road.
Christiansen and several other strip club attorneys said the ordinance will 
force only minor changes in their clients' day-to-day operations. "We can 
live with it," said John Moran Jr., who represents The Library Gentlemen's 
Club on Boulder Highway and Strip Tease on Valley View Boulevard.
Several attorneys said the only provision with a substantial impact is the 
prohibition against anyone under 21 working at a strip club that serves 
alcohol. Currently, the minimum age is 18. Dancers who are 18 to 20 years 
old now have three choices: change their profession, work at one of the 
all-nude juice bars or get a job at an alcohol-serving topless club in the 
city of Las Vegas.
"The only real effect of what they've done is forced the youngest dancers 
to go totally nude to make a living," said one strip club attorney who 
spoke on condition of anonymity. Several commissioners said this was not 
their intent. But Atkinson Gates said she was not sympathetic to the 
dancers' plight. "They can get another job. They can do something else for 
a living," she said. "I don't buy that argument."
Atkinson Gates said she introduced the legislation because she believed 
some of the acts commonly performed in strip clubs "are downright wrong, 
downright prostitution."
"You're confusing sex with titillation," Dr. Jeff Arenswald told Atkinson 
Gates. "You have some repressed sexual ideas."
The comment prompted Gates to grab a gavel and yell, "I said shut up!" 
across the commission's chambers. She later apologized for the outburst. 
Commissioner Erin Kenny did not attend the meeting, at which Chairman Dario 
Herrera cast the sole vote in opposition to the new rules. Herrera said 
restricting what is allowed in county strip clubs could give a competitive 
advantage to strip clubs located inside the Las Vegas city limits, where 
the county rules would not apply.
Lap dances previously were illegal in unincorporated Clark County, though 
the prohibition was not enforced because a district judge struck down the 
rules as too vague. Police officers testifying in support of the ordinance 
said enforcement would be aided by specifying what is and what is not 
permissible. They predicted this will quell secondary problems with drugs 
and prostitution in the clubs."
Gene sez: Long before the ordinance was even to go into effect, cops 
started rousting clubs in the city, particularly the Olympic Garden Club
More from the Gene Files: What you'd normally think is a joke, ain't. Las 
Vegas which came up with a cockamamie lap dancing ordinance a couple of 
weeks ago is cracking down on it. Six strippers from Olympic Garden Club 
learned that this week when they got fired for dancing too close to 
customers. Undercover police sent a notice of noncompliance to the club, 
when officers observed contact between the dancers and customers. The 
club's owner says he immediately fired all six dancers. Strippers say 
they'll protest the regs, when they take effect Sept. 1.
Gene sez we spoke to Brown Wednesday afternoon to get an update about a 
proposed march on the Las Vegas Commissioners' building.
Gene: They've already started hassling dancers.
Brown: Every little jurisdiction has its foibles. Ours is that the city of 
Las Vegas is different than Clark County. Actually when you're in Las 
Vegas, you're in Clark County. Las Vegas the city is really small. Clark 
County's laws are using some hate speech in their description of dancers. I 
want to start seeing these studies on secondary effects of dancing ended. 
You couldn't say these things about any other group. I'd like to see you 
try to say that gay men spread AIDS. Or make comments about any minority 
group's lifestyle. Quite frankly dancing is a lifestyle as well. Our 
organization's idea is that you have to have reasons for passing a law. The 
reasons would be to promote public health- to stop drug abuse, to limit 
prostitution. How dare they classify a group. How dare they do it. I think 
dancers are the last whipping boy and we're mad as hell and are not going 
to take it any more.
Gene: What's the game plan with the organization.
Brown: The march and rally? We're going to march to the county commission 
building. We're going to exercise the second half of the first amendment- 
the right to peaceful assembly to air grievances with the government. We're 
going to have an old fashioned Civil Rights march. Quite frankly our civil 
rights have been violated. We're going to have this march Sept. 1 when this 
ordinance goes into effect.
Gene: Shit's already started at the Olympic Garden.
Brown: This is all the doing of one particular vice cop and I can't 
remember his name off the top of my head. He never states his name and 
works in an undercover capacity. He's all super sleuth. But this is is 
whole bailiwick. Metro is a consolidated unit- they serve the city of Las 
Vegas as well as Clark County. But they're two separate jurisdictions with 
different judges what not, and different courts. God bless mayor Goodman 
who defended the dancers and said they're a beautiful part of Las Vegas. 
Nevertheless, vice cops went into city clubs and began wilding for lack of 
a better term. They started to arrest any and every girl in the city. 
Olympic Garden is very much in the city. They're rousting them everywhere 
and arrested a lot of city girls but club owners like to keep a lower 
profile. Peter of Olympic Garden is a really good guy, a beautiful human 
being. He really likes his dancers. They're more than just little money 
makers. Then they stopped with the arrests. They took a hiatus because 
they're getting a lot of bad press and it's a beautiful thing.
Gene: Sept. 1 it heats up again.
Brown: I don't know. There's been a lot of pressure. We've been acting in 
cooperation with the Las Vegas Dancers Alliance. I would compare that 
alliance with the ACLU and the ADL. Yesterday the County Commissioners had 
a sneaky meeting at six in the morning. I went down there and was the only 
person from our industry who went to the meeting. They discussed the 
ordinance. The one lady commissioner [Yvonne Atkinson Gates] wasn't there 
to vote. They decided pretty much to gut the law. They've taken out the 
silly, silly things like no tipping in the G-string. And they're going to 
work on the language of the ordinance about how you can dance. Because the 
wording is pretty much that you can rub on a customer's leg. It's in 
legalese but you can rub on a customer's leg. One county commissioner 
pointed out, where does your leg stop? The vice cops are saying you know 
where your leg stops. Actually, no we don't. And they're probably going to 
be the ones ruling on where your leg stops. I'm sitting there thinking your 
penis sits on tops of your legs, so... My frustration is just say what you 
mean. I've had a semester of law school and I think legalese nonsense is 
one of the grievous of our nation.
Gene: That's the whole gimmick about the law. That's what you as as client 
are paying for- the translation of all that mumbo jumbo. They created a 
language that's foreign enough where people don't get it, so you have to 
hire a lawyer to help you get it.
Brown: I completely agree and you've got vice cops writing law which is 
really kind of scary. A law school is simply a trade school for people who 
have really useless bachelor's degrees. You do learn something there. And 
when I hear a vice cops saying, 'I wrote the law the way I want it 
written!' I'm thinking and you are a fine Harvard scholar, aren't you. 
They're just asinine. And the vice cops are not interested in stopping the 
law being broken. They're interested in arresting girls. They made that 
very clear when I had real teachers tell them you need a class to explain 
to these women exactly what you mean along the lines of an alcohol 
awareness class. They were not at all interested in any sort of class. They 
want to arrest girls.
Gene: Are you going to use the upcoming strippers' expo as an attempt to 
sign on girls.
Brown: That's serendipity that we chose the First. And yes, any one who 
wants to share their solidarity with us, we would appreciate that. Let me 
put this out to any woman in the industry who's ever danced here- if you 
have ever been a dancer at all and you want to support your right as a 
woman not to be defamed, we would so appreciate any support at our rally 
afterwards. After we go to the County Commissioners we're going to have an 
after party at Talk of the Town. We're going to have a serious local 
demonstration at the commissioners' building. The march starts 3 pm at 
Garces and Las Vegas Blvd. right across the street from Showgirl Video. A 
march down the boulevard is about half a mile. We were going to make it 
three miles...
Gene: But that's murder on the stilettos.
Brown: That would have been like the Bataan Death March. We're putting the 
call out to any twentysomething who's envious that she didn't get to march 
at a real life demonstration. Here's your chance.

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