Photo credit: Sue Lincoln

Louisiana Legislature Tackles Toplessness

The floor of the Louisiana Legislature was recently the scene of a brief skirmish in the culture wars as a flurry of escalatingly sexist bills took over as the subject of deliberation by that revered body.

The mayhem began when Republican state Rep. Kenny Havard introduced an amendment to a bill that would make it illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to perform in a strip club. Havard’s rider introduced more restrictive age regulations, as well as a weight limit, for strippers, helping to protect citizens from “chunky, elderly adult entertainers out there gyrating for pity singles.”

Appalled and enraged, Rep. Nancy Landry began by verbally protesting the amendment but then changed tactics as “pranksters” in the Legislature cut off her mic while chanting “bros before hoes.” At that point, Landry introduced her own piece of legislation, the “Construction Worker Torso Regulation Act.”

Her measure would’ve levied fines for all construction workers who worked shirtless “in spite of clear, objective evidence that their flabby, hairy bodies are both a nuisance and an eyesore.” It featured fines on a sliding scale, depending on the level of “aesthetic dismay.”

“Pranksters” in the Legislature cut off her mic while chanting “bros before hoes.”

The bill also included a special clause that worked the other way: Construction workers found to be wearing their shirts in spite of having “superb, blemish-free, well-muscled torsos” also would face steep fines and be subject to “group discipline,” where volunteer women would offer “encouraging catcalls” to the construction worker to “assist with his being confident in working shirtless.”

Not to be outdone, Havard responded with another proposed change to the stripper bill, the “Tit for Tat” amendment. This amendment specified that “the number of tattoos a stripper may have on her body cannot exceed a ratio of one tattoo for every centimeter of age-induced breast droop the stripper has experienced.”

According to Havard, this would allow tattoos to serve as a sort of “pop-out turkey thermometer” for strip club patrons. Havard went on to outline the benefits of the provision.

“If you saw a girl come out on stage and there were four tattoos visible on her arms alone, you’d know her fun bags will probably be brushing the floor and it’s a good time for a pee break,” he argued. “You wouldn’t even have to wait for her to pull off her half-shirt before politely excusing yourself from your circle of gentlemen acquaintances.”

Rep. Julie Stokes was next to wade into the fray, introducing “Manscape the Landscape,” a proposal that would impose a fine for “any man who appears at the beach with more than 30% of his back occluded by hair.”

Lawmakers were quick to criticize, pointing out that Louisiana doesn’t have much beachfront property and arguing that what little the state has should not be unduly burdened with excessive legislation.

Numerous male legislators were quick to point out that Stokes and Landry are “cute when they’re angry.”

Said Rep. Havard, “Governmental overrreach is always a problem. Our beaches, few though they may be, need to be free. I mean, ever been to Cypremort Point? That ‘sand’ is approximately one-tenth broken glass. Does that mean we should bump up the fines for bringing glass bottles to that beach? Of course not! It means we should all enjoy our time at the beach wearing nice, sensible, thigh-high protective boots that are puncture-proof. Duh. That’s how freedom works.”

When asked how often the legislature behaves so “colorfully,” one veteran legislator said, “All the time, though this was particularly bad.”

Eventually, cooler heads prevailed. Stokes’ and Landry’s bills were tabled, and Havard withdrew his amendments.

Numerous male legislators were quick to point out that Stokes and Landry are “cute when they’re angry” and that “Stokes would be totally hot if she weren’t too old to be a stripper.”RedShtick-Top-ColumnStop

About Jared Kendall

A freelance data journalist and father of two, Jared Kendall has been using comedy as a coping mechanism his entire life. Born a Yankee, Jared's twenty-year stint in Baton Rouge still leaves him with one question: "Why'd I move here, again?"

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