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Old 09-10-2019, 03:27 PM
Saintly Loser is online now
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,310
Originally Posted by Jim B. View Post
I don't have a cite. But shortly after the age of AIDS, they reportedly started closing down the gay bathhouses. (I remember in New York they closed down Plato's Retreat, a hetero sex club to avoid the charge of discrimination [yeah right]. I digress.)

Anyway this is just another example of the mommy state run awry IMHO. Gay people won't stop having sex if you do that. They'll just find different places to do. Phew, really.

Anyway I do actually have a better idea for those who still think it's a good idea. Why not leave the bathhouses open. But mandate safe sex practices there. Those who don't will be politely asked to leave.

What do you all think?
I actually remember the night when all the back-room places in New York City closed. It was literally one night. I was meeting some friends at midnight at a bar and we were going to go to the Anvil. We walked over, and it was closed. Locked, lights out, sign ripped from the wall.

A few blocks away, the same was true of the Mineshaft. And other places that permitted on-premises sex.

It was easy enough for the City to closed these joints. None of them were operating legally. None of them had liquor licences. All of them stayed open way past closing time (the Anvil used to stay open until noon). All of them were cheating on taxes. There were a lot of rumors about the ownership of the clubs. The bribery going on must have been enormous.

Was this the "mommy state" running amok? I don't think so. By this time (1985) it was known that HIV was transmitted sexually. While organizations like GMHC had been trying to encourage safer sex practices in the clubs, it wasn't working. Unsafe sex was happening on a huge scale all up and down West Street. I think New York City did the right thing. There was a serious public health crisis happening, and that's exactly what government is for. I see it as akin to mandating vaccination for children entering school.