Lap dancing has no part to play in our modern world

Naive to think that sport and politics won’t be a toxic mix

Have your say

Will all those who think what Portsmouth really needs is another lap dancing club please stand up.

Now stay standing if you’re prepared to explain why to your wife, girlfriend, mother or daughter.

There’s a good reason why men don’t tend to visit establishments like Wiggle and Elegance with their other halves.

Take away the harmless names and all you’re left with is the rather pitiful idea that there’s nothing wrong with a bunch of men sitting in a darkened room, watching a woman dance provocatively while she takes her clothes off for money.

You don’t have to be a feminist (or even a woman) to understand why there’s no place for these clubs in an enlightened society.

Back in the day, women were there to be looked at and men held all the cards. There’s still a long way to go but our views have shifted since then.

That’s why Portsmouth City Council’s proposed policy surrounding the licensing of these venues has an important part to play here. If passed, the policy will effectively mean that no more sex establishments will be allowed to open.

Conflicting research means the jury’s still out on whether these kinds of places are harmful to the individual. But there can be little doubt that they are damaging to society.

Why? Because anything that attempts to normalise the objectification of a person irreparably chips away at the value we place on each other.

There are those who must think that simply doesn’t matter compared to giving a woman the choice to get her breasts out for a man’s hard cash.

And sadly, their ignorance often lures them into name-calling. But making side-swipes about the opposition’s appearance in an online forum has never counted as taking part in the debate.

It’s just old-fashioned abuse and does nothing to dissuade anyone that the arguments for these places are rooted in ugly, sexist attitudes.

In many respects, Portsmouth City Council should be congratulated for taking a modern approach to this issue.

The only question now is would allowing existing businesses to stay constitute a cop-out?