April 03, 2000 10:02am
Free Speech Coalition Says Supreme Court's Decision on Nude Dancing Changes Little
Source: Free Speech Coalition
by: Company Press Release
(CANOGA PARK, CA) -- The Free Speech Coalition, trade association for the adult entertainment industry, said today that the U.S. Supreme Court has changed ``little if anything'' from the Court's earlier opinions on nude dancing. The Coalition said that the Court's majority opinion offers ``essentially the same confusing rationale'' for ordinances which censor forms of free speech.
In a six-to-three opinion last week, the Court supported an Erie, Pennsylvania, ordinance that requires dancers to wear at least pasties and a G-string. The Court's majority opinion said the ruling was a way of combating ``negative secondary effects'' the opinion said was associated with establishments offering that kind of entertainment.
Jeffrey J. Douglas, attorney for the Free Speech Coalition, noted that Justice David Souter's views on nude dancing had ``dramatically changed'' since his opinion in a similar case in 1991. Voting with the minority last week, he said that because Erie had not provided any evidence of ``secondary effects,'' and ``the (Erie) ordinance was unconstitutional.''
FSC Attorney Douglas said: ``Seven justices agree that nude dancing is protected expression. There is disagreement among the seven as to how much protection erotic dance is entitled. Justice Souter acknowledges that his earlier views were naive and failed to provide sufficient safeguards for erotic expression.''