That long harrumph! on strip clubs from the Seattle Times this week had to leave a lot of readers smiling if not laughing out loud.

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The Times' Fear of Ersatz Brothels

That long harrumph! on strip clubs from the Seattle Times this week had to leave a lot of readers smiling if not laughing out loud. It was notable for being out of touch with its community and perhaps the Times itself. Under new editorial page editor Ryan Blethen, the Times' opinions have begun to voice a sugar-tit tone of correctness not evident under predecessor Jim Vesely. The "Egads!" if not "My word!" reaction was laid out in Victorian splendor to oppose a court-approved plan for a new Deja Vu strip club across from Safeco Field. The unnamed writer - who seemed to confuse Deja Vu owner Roger Forbes with Seattle's freshly re-indicted Strippergate perp Frank Colacurcio Sr. - thought that taking jobs as nude dancers was "degrading to women," that dancing clubs are "ersatz brothels" and "dingy gathering places for lonely men to sip overpriced soft drinks and ogle the female form." Lap dancing "is prostitution by another name." And the new SoDo club would be "too damn close to families and a general public that is insulted and offended by the intrusion."

Well, too close for an editorial writer who doesn't get out much, anyway. The editorial sent some of us rushing to the Times' database to determine the last time an editorial writer said "damn" in print. (That's a lot of dead language to suffer, and I gave up, bleary-eyed, a few years into the query. But I also couldn't find the words "damn" and "Iraq" together in an editorial, either. Apparently it's a word reserved to condemn legal nudity, not illegal war). Since three out of five Seattle voters in 2006 backed the operation of Seattle nudie clubs, voting against a ban on lap dancing and other restrictive measures, you have to suspect somebody typed out this misplaced sermon mainly to invite reaction (next: more profound thoughts on "degrading guns" and "abortion by another name"). And indeed the ed drew more than 65 commenters, many of them saying if you don't like nudie clubs, don't go there, others noting the longtime uncorrupting and peaceful co-existence of the Lusty Lady and the Seattle Art Museum, and some pointing out that the non-alcohol club will be a good place for M's fans to go afterward and sober up. But in the end it was Hoseman77 who may have captured reader sentiment, with a line apparently directed at Blethen: "Hey Mr Editorialist...Did you know your're beautiful when you wag your finger like that?"
 
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