Lawmaker’s Stripper Joke Angers Female House Members
It's probably not the first time the subject of adult entertainment has been discussed in the legislative halls of our state. I would imagine that the subject has been discussed more in hushed tones than in open forum debate. That has changed during this session of the legislature as lawmakers are considering changing the laws in Louisiana to reflect a change in the age of requirements for those who want to pursue a career in exotic dancing.
Yesterday the House of Representatives passed a measure that would raise the age for adult night club performers to be a minimum of 21 in order to perform. The previous lower limit had been 18 years of age. While the bill passed unanimously, 96-0, the debate wasn't without controversy and what appeared to be a very childish attempt at humor by one lawmaker.
Representative Kenny Havard was indeed in agreement with the increase in the age requirement, however he took it a step further by proposing that strippers in Louisiana not only be 21 years old but they in fact would be required to be between the ages of 21 and 28 and weigh less than 160 pounds.
Female lawmakers did not take this idea well at all.
That's not the way we behave in this body, I don't even know what Rep. Havard was thinking. That's a dangerous thing to do politically. I think it was a bad idea.
Representative Havard suggested that his suggestion was an attempt at humor. Representative Stokes suggested that it was more a slap in the face to females in the state and in particular around the state capitol.
And I see women get treated differently than men and I'm going to tell you what, you gave me the perfect forum to talk about it right now because it has got to stop. That was utterly disrespectful and disgusting.
As we mentioned the legislation passed in the House and will move on to the Senate for further debate and discussion. The even sadder part about Mr. Havard's remarks is this took the focus away from the original intent of the bill which was to keep young women from falling victim to the crime of human trafficking.