Kathy Posner

The Chicago Tribune ran an editorial titled, “Ladies’ Night Lives,” about a recent ruling by The Second Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan that upheld the right of bars to hold “Ladies’ Night” promotions. I won’t drink to that, not because I think it is discriminatory against men per se, but because it is favorable to women. I thought feminism was for a level playing ground to be established, not for the right of women to drink cheap liquor.

But discrimination is not the basis of why the Court ruled as they did. The unanimous three-judge panel said that it was not proven that bars are subject to a law barring discrimination by anyone acting under government authority. The plaintiff in the case, Den Hollander, alleged that clubs "engage in state action" because they sell booze under licenses issued by the state. The Court wrote in its opinion that, "Regardless of the veracity of this statement, we cannot agree that the state's liquor licensing laws have caused the nightclubs to hold 'ladies' nights. Liquor licenses are not directly related to the pricing scheme."

The Court also cited, "with great reluctance," a 1972 Supreme Court decision that "found no state action" when a Moose Lodge in Pennsylvania refused to serve a black man because the club limited membership to white males. "Until the Supreme Court revisits Moose Lodge, we are required to follow its holding," they wrote.

In my opinion, Hollander lost because of legal mumbo jumbo semantics, not because he was wrong.

Most interesting in the Tribune editorial on the subject was, “For that matter, notes George Mason University law professor Nelson Lund, the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which requires equal access to public accommodations (such as taverns), does not outlaw discrimination on the basis of sex — only of race, national origin and religion.” So there are only three protected classes from discrimination-- that does not seem adequate. I can think of lots more that need protecting!

A prominent group would be, “Stupid People.” But since, as my friend Lisa says, “Most people don’t realize that they fall into that category,” it is difficult to protect them. A nightclub could hold a promotion that would allow stupid people to drink for free, but who would admit they were stupid just to get complimentary liquor? Smart people, realizing economically that it is good to drink for free would say they were stupid just to get the free drinks. But since stupid people would be too embarrassed to admit they are stupid, they would pay for the booze, thus making them more stupid! So the promotion essentially fails because the smart people are drinking “on the house” and it is supposed to be “Stupid People Night.”

That last paragraph might seem confusing, but since readers of this blog are smart, I am sure you all get it.

Since women demand equal pay for equal work in the business world, then they should pay equal prices for equal drinks on the adult playground. It should cost them the same for a beer as it does a man. Anything else would be stupid.

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Editors Note: I wonder what the ruling would be if men or only white people could drink for free? It would be a whole different ballgame!