Do Republican Family Values Include Owning Strip Clubs?

| by Jerome McCollom

Republicans, who oppose same-sex marriage, constantly talk about how they are "protecting" marriage by denying gays and lesbians the right to marry the person they love. I always thought this was a very weird usage of that word because to protect marriage they limit it to as few people as possible.

I guess it was like "protecting" democracy 100 years ago by denying women the right to vote. Well, Wisconsin Republican State Senator Robert Cowles is one of those supposed protectors. He stated in 2008, "I'd like to think that I have family values." Family values being code word, of course, for not only denying gays their full rights, but fear and loathing of them. The same way we used to do in this country with Jews.

Than again, maybe the senator doesn't despise gays, he only wants them to be limited in their rights. Anyway, the good senator is invested in VCG Holding, which owns a chain of 20 strip clubs throughout our great county. He also owns stock in Rick's Cabaret International, which also has strip clubs and a number of adult-themed websites. Will he soon disinvest? Probably not, as long as there isn't outrage by the voters of his district.

If someone wants to go to a strip club or visit an adult-themed website, good for them. Frankly, I believe the government should get out of banning consensual sexual activities of adults. Brothels, for example, should be legalized and regulated, as done in Nevada. That will dramatically lower STD rates and drug use among sex workers.

Cowles, though, is of a philosophical movement and political party with many people, who would -- if they could -- ban strip clubs and increase obscenity prosecutions in the U.S. These are the same people who want to reinstate sodomy laws in order to lock up gay men for consensual sexual relations.

So remember when they talk about "family values" because to many of them, the almighty isn't their deity, it's the dollar.