City Councilwoman Stacy Head, who failed last week to persuade her colleagues to put a limit on the number of Bourbon Street strip clubs, is rarely shy about expressing her opinions on the council dais.You see this sort of thing pretty often. It's a common trope among conservative plutocrat types seeking to deligitimize popular opposition. This is why we are told the March For Our Lives this weekend was secretly organized by "Soros" or some nefarious actor. The other night I saw a lady on Twitter accuse Airbnb critics of shilling for "the hotel industry." In New Orleans we hear often from the Stacy Heads of the world that council chambers have been packed with "paid protesters" over any number of issues. It's a small glimpse at the contempt with which the politcal insiders and City Hall regulars regard anyone outside of their own social class.
So it might have come as no surprise Thursday when she chided some of the two dozen dancers who spoke out against the proposed cap on the clubs for accepting a financial incentive from their employers in exchange for their opposition.
Head said two clubs under the Larry Flynt brand, Hustler and Barely Legal, offered to waive 10 so-called “house fees” for any dancer who showed up to oppose the cap. Dancers must pay such a fee to the clubs each time they perform on stage.
“That’s selling yourselves out,” she said.
Stacy is an accute and often cartoonish example of this. Last week, she suggested that policymakers should consider homeless New Orleanians as though they are of lesser "value" than other residents. Clearly she has similar notions about the Bourbon Street dancers. But while Head is particulary nasty, it's worth noting these attitudes are spread more widely than that. I dare say they hold a majority among our political class many of whom would be advised to reflect on their own actions before accusing others of "selling themselves out."