John Stossel

Mayor David Miller told me, "In the judgment of our police officers that night, they violated one portion or more of [the city's] ordinance."

What were the police protecting willing adult customers from?

"From these types of activities spilling over into their neighborhood."

Within a week of the Chippendales arrest, three murders occurred in Lubbock. Wouldn't those police officers have been better used elsewhere?

Some states have laws that creep right into the bedroom. In Alabama, legislators banned the sale of sex toys. That upset Dave Smith, whose wife owns Pleasures, "Your One Stop Romance Shop."

"In the state of Alabama I can buy a gun. I can carry it in my pocket. ... But if I buy this [sex toy], someone could get arrested!" Smith said.

The ACLU helped challenge the law. But an appeals court ruled that the politicians have a "legitimate legislative interest in discouraging prurient interests in autonomous sex" -- in other words, masturbation -- because that may be "detrimental to the health and morality of the State."

Oddly, Pleasures is still in business because the law makes an exception if a sex toy is sold for a medical purpose. To buy a vibrator, customers need only answer yes to a questionnaire asking things like, "Have difficulty having an orgasm?"

I asked the Family Research Council's Sprigg whom the government protects when it closes down sex shops.

"The government is protecting actually the people who patronize those shops because I don't think it's in their interest to use pornography and sex toys."

Give me a break.


John Stossel

John Stossel is host of "Stossel" on the Fox Business Network. He's the author of "No They Can't: Why Government Fails, but Individuals Succeed." To find out more about John Stossel, visit his site at >johnstossel.com. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com. ©Creators Syndicate