Sex and gender at work, in bed, and on the street

Fear of sex shops will cost city of Manassas $70,000

September 28, 2010 - 02:30 PM
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A Sept. 7 town hall on the evils of pornography (Photo: TBD Staff)

On Sept. 7, residents of Manassas, Va. called a town hall meeting to protest a planned sex shop in the city's quaint Old Town District. Attendees argued that the shop's opening would tempt perverts, corrupt children, and promote the work of the Devil. Now, the generalized fearmongering has finally coalesced into legislation.

Last night, the Manassas City Council voted unanimously to pass a resolution regulating the development of "sexually-oriented businesses"  inside Manassas city limits. The legislation would prevent sex shops from proliferating near Manassas schools, churches, playgrounds, day care centers, youth activity centers, parks, or libraries—most places, in other words. But the effective banishment comes at a price.

Manassas' fear of pornographic materials encroaching on its park space will cost the town an estimated $70,000 in legal fees.

"The City of Manassas does express its intent to regulate sexually-oriented businesses to the fullest extent permitted by the Constitution and laws of the United States and the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia," the resolution reads. The Manassas City Council accompanied its resolution with an "action plan" detailing just how Manassas plans to box out "sexually-oriented businesses" without infringing upon their Constitutional rights.

Proposed costs include: An "outside legal 'second opinion' on the validity of existing permits" ($3,000); a legal expert who can "prepare the legislative record supporting zoning and licensing legislation" ($30-50,000); an "outside expert legal 'third opinion'" ($10,000); the construction of maps detailing Manassas areas protected from sexually-oriented businesses ($3,000); and a city attorney who can develop a "prohibition ordinance of SOB activities" ($5,000). That's a $70,000 investment to prevent local parents from being forced to explain why the DVD store sells lotions.

KK's Temptations, the sex shop that set off the Manassas firestorm, plans to open on Oct. 20.

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  1. emikoala emikoala

    Emily Koala

    Sep 28, 2010 - 05:34:59 PM

    Is this real life?

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  2. Philip Rosemond Philip Rosemond

    Philip Rosemond

    Sep 30, 2010 - 02:50:30 PM

    I don't get what the big deal is. The is no evidence that such businesses increase the chance of sex crimes. In fact, in some places, vice crime is acteually lower because of them. Further, predators rarely frequent such shops because th...ey are -always- watched by those who do not approve. Hmmm, maybe outside of Old Town would be better, but then the street traffic of the area won't "out" potential patrons...that is, if one finds such a business offensive. These businesses are usually quiet and stay out of problems for a given community because they know that their very existence is always scrutized. Children? Well, children walk passed gun shops, liquor stores, breath noxious fumes when waling passed traffic, are seduced by sugary drinks and candy, junk food, tobacco availability, mobile and IT communication all the time. Fact is, XXX stores are strictly prohibited from allowing children to enter their doors, just as they are from purchasing alcohol, tobacco and firearms. (And, after all, how the *&^%$? do you think children got here? Do your children not know the facts of life by the time the graduate from HS?!??) "Thinking about the children, is simply non-sequitor to this discussion. Indeed, I think the real discussion here is in regards to the level of prudery it is possible to foster upon a community for $70,000! Right now, Manassas needs whatever business it can get. This kind of business may not be optimum for the most conservative, but it's something. Social conservative censorship of such a business is not going to change a world where, if a child or adult wants access to "adult" content, all they need to do is turn on their computer.

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  3. demonfafa demonfafa

    Brandon Corbett

    Sep 30, 2010 - 02:39:07 PM

    Manassas, you just took another step towards cementing yourselves as the backward hicks of the DC area. Sex shops are no longer the sanctuaries for perverted old men in trenchcoats buying the latest Bettie Page skin mags. Most of my female friends are liberated women with committed partners who occasionally spice up their sex lives. It won't corrupt your children because people under 18 aren't permitted inside! There's several sex shops out in Falls Church, Springfield, Georgetown and Tysons Corner and none of them have corrupted anyone just by being there! When are we going to get out of the habit of letting Puritans have more political clout than the rest of us normal, rational people? All they do is go to church and cry foul when something offends them. They don't seem to be interested in feeding the homeless, preventing environmental decay or making our world a better place. I'd invite all those opposed to the store to eat a back of dicks, but that'd mean they'd have to let the store open, so they can buy the dicks.

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