Are You F—ing Kidding Me?

I am a bit too angry to see straight, but need to share the utter, reprehensible ridiculousness of this:

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An ex-stripper who went on to law school and later was elected a judge was found dead inside her Nevada home Sunday, The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Her body was discovered during a welfare check, the report said, and authorities do not suspect foul play.

Municipal Judge Diana Hampton, who was 50, was known by colleagues as a hard worker and appeared to be the perfect picture of health. Her death shocked colleagues, one of whom told the paper he planned to have lunch with the judge this week.

Hampton, who served as a municipal judge for more than a decade, worked with youth in the community to discourage them from crime.

Hampton took an unusual route to her judgeship. She was criticized during her 2005 run for Henderson Department 3 for working as a stripper in Las Vegas prior to pursuing law school. It was a part of her past she did not disavow and reaffirmed that her past had nothing to do with how she would rule from the bench.

“From the very beginning, she decided she was going to be a judge,” said Joe Sciscento, a justice of the peace who knew Hampton for more than 20 years. “She was dedicated to that. She was focused on that, and she wouldn’t let things get in her way.”

[Emphasis added] Continue reading


A Stripper FAQ

An Imgur user going by the handle LittleQueenTrashMouth (probably not their real name) posted a two-part FAQ (part 1, part 2) about the actual business and experience of stripping, and it actually shed light on a job that people tend to either mythologize or severely denigrate. It offers one person’s perspective, but from a viewpoint rarely seen in most media. It focuses exclusively on female strippers serving male clientele, which I suppose constitutes most people’s image of how stripping works. Here are a few highlights (it gets pretty PG-13 from here on, plus a trigger warning for mention of rape and sexual harassment):

How often do the strip poles get cleaned? Continue reading


This Week in WTF, August 24, 2012


Definitely not baby food. I now profusely apologize for any mockery and ask that you please not lacerate me.

– A recent recall announcement from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reads: “Gerber Recalls Machetes Due to Laceration Hazard.” As it turns out, this is not Gerber, the well-known manufacturer of baby food. It is Gerber Legendary Blades, of Portland, Oregon, the company that makes machetes that might cut you. I’m just glad they caught that in time. (To be fair, it sounds like a pretty serious potential hazard: “A weakness in the area where the handle meets the blade can cause the handle or the blade to break during use, posing a laceration hazard.”)

– A strip club owner in Tampa, Florida does not expect the upcoming Republican National Convention, less than six miles from his club, to bring him much business. Time will tell.

– Speaking of Tampa, Rush Limbaugh thinks that President Obama instructed the National Hurricane Center to announce the risk of Tropical Storm Isaac possibly hitting Tampa around the time of the convention. He also said something about turning the convention into a FEMA camp, and then I think an Alien larva burst out of his chest and offered a more sensible take on the news. (NOTE: I might have imagined that last part. The comments about the tropical storm actually happened.)

– A reporter, formerly of the Houston Chronicle, is complaining to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission of sex discrimination. The newspaper fired her in March, allegedly because she neglected to tell them of her other job as a stripper. In what I am certain is a total coincidence, Gloria Allred represents her.

– A casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey neglected to check a shipment of playing cards to confirm that they had been shuffled. They had not been shuffled. Gamblers caught on and won $1.5 million, give or take. The casino is suing the card company, but they’re also suing the winning gamblers for violating the “house always wins” clause.

– A so-bad-he’s-really-bad comedian launches into an absurdly racist routine in front of a young Asian couple and gets (justifiably) knocked out:

Photo credit: ‘Gerber Machete’ by Dana60Cummins (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.


Porn and Prejudice: Newspaper Edition

Silhouette of Stripper on a PoleHouston was shocked, shocked! to learn that one of the Houston Chronicle’s society reporters — truly the last guardians of dignity in our culture — was moonlighting as a (gasp) stripper. Now she no longer works as a society reporter, and presumably society is safe once more.

Richard Connelly, a writer for the Houston Post, broke the story with all the gravitas you might expect from the guy who broke the story of hot chicks on the Texas sex offender registry. When faced with criticism that all he was doing was good old-fashioned slut-shaming, he tried to deny it by confirming it:

I don’t get the”slut shaming” charge. If you want to be a stripper, fine.

If you want to write for a very conservative, uptight paper — covering the very powerful, very conservative and straitlaced people the paper so desperately works to keep happy and unruffled — fine.

If you want to combine the two, it’s interesting, to say the least.

Andrea Grimes aptly addresses why Connelly probably really doesn’t think it’s “fine:”

Connelly’s entire post belies the “If you want to be a stripper, fine,” sentence. Obviously it’s not “fine” with Connelly or he wouldn’t have written an entire blog post on this woman, dug up background information on her, posted pictures so everyone could see what she looks like, contacted her bosses to make sure they knew she was a stripper and–here’s the journalism 101 FAIL, guys: posted the whole thing before he had heard from her for comment (or heard from her declining to do so).

This strikes me as an example of a person creating a situation, then claiming that it is something important, “interesting,” and newsworthy. Connelly acts like he is motivated out of concern that a reporter at a conservative Texas newspaper is also a low-level sex worker, but the whole thing might have never come to light had he not broken the story himself. It is the journalistic equivalent of internet hunting. Besides, Tressler wasn’t exactly hiding.

It’s not terribly hard to drum up a bit of outrage by revealing that someone works on the side as a — gasp! — stripper. Houston has a rather tremendous number of strip clubs (I have heard that it has among the biggest number of strip clubs per capita in the country, whatever that means, but I can’t find figures on that, alas.) It should not be surprising to learn that a Houstonian works or has worked as a stripper, any more than learning that a Houstonian has patronized a strip club. Many people seem to still think that activities in strip clubs are much more interesting (and less legal) than they usually are. The bottom line is that it is an effective way for some people to make money, and now one person has lost the job most directly related to their career. Working as a stripper is only scandalous because certain busybodies make it so.

In closing, the best headline to come out of this manufactroversy: “Stripper Holds Shameful Secret Day Job as a Reporter.”

Photo credit: Silhouette of Stripper on a Pole by Momoko (Open Clip Art library image’s page) [see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons.