Newly confirmed Catholic Supreme Court Justice authors opinion affirming right of San Diego strip clubs to remain open despite pandemic

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Justice Barrett, after the ruling: “Do I want my daughters to strip, or my sons to visit strip clubs? No, of course not. But as I said during my confirmation hearings, my goal as a justice is to defend the law in light of the Constitution, regardless of my personal feelings on the matter. My fellow Catholics have a right to receive Jesus’ body in communion during a pandemic, and it’s not the government’s job to say that those who reverence another sort of body are any less deserving. Look at this photo from Pacers last Saturday night and tell me how it’s different from church — the lights, the special clothing, the rapt devotion of the faithful before they make their offerings. Of course, they’re all going to hell, but that’s not the government’s business, either.”

There will be no midnight Masses this Christmas Eve in California, thanks to the curfew imposed by the governor’s stay-at-home order, imposed in an effort to stop the rapid proliferation of covid-19. And there will be no Christmas Eve ‘unwrappings’ in the private Champagne Room of Pacers strip club either, for the same reason. But the churches will still have services to mark Jesus’ birthday, and the girls will still shimmy down the chimney pole in their Santa’s Helper skivvies — again, for the same reason. Because both activities have just been designated as protected from government regulation by no less an authority than the United States Supreme Court, thanks to a 5-4 decision in which new Justice Amy Comey Barrett wrote the majority opinion.

Facade of temple in Khajuraho, India. From the ruling Pacers vs. Becerra: “The great ancient historian Herodotus, among others, described the Babylonian practice of sacred prostitution. And who among the sexually experienced can deny that there is something transporting, even transcendent about the sexual act? Not for nothing do the French call orgasm ‘La petite mort’ – the little death. The very word ‘ecstasy’ takes its root from the Latin ‘ex-stasis’ – standing outside. In the moment of climax, we take leave of ourselves, in much the same way as a Catholic mystic or tribal shaman. It is true that the modern strip club does not include such ecstasies – not legally, anyway – but then again, modern Jewish temples no longer offer literal blood sacrifices to atone for sin. In both cases, the spirit of the practice remains. Pacers is, for a certain sort of soul, a kind of church, and is therefore protected in the same manner as the churches in our previous ruling on the matter of pandemic-based shutdowns.”

“Over the years, we’ve been served very well by the claim that stripping is speech, and therefore deserving of special protection,” says jubilant Pacers owner Joey Scuzzball. “And that was the line taken by San Diego Superior Court Judge Joel Wohlfeil. But it wasn’t enough to keep AG Xavier Becerra — who’s probably feeling pretty high and mighty ever since Biden decided to reward him with a cabinet post for his spirited prosecution of that Planned Parenthood sting video guy — from saying he was still gonna come after us for violating California’s stay-at-home order. Funnily enough, that’s what gave me the idea for switching from a free speech argument to a freedom of religion argument. The same lawyers defending the guy who went after Planned Parenthood are representing some California churches in their effort to stay open. And as we saw last month in Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn vs. Cuomo, this new lady Justice is friendly to their way of thinking. Free speech is tricky – you can’t shout fire in a crowded theater, so maybe you can’t shake your moneymaker in a crowded titty bar. But religious freedom is having a moment. I knew it was just a matter of getting our case in front of Honorable Mrs. Jesus there in Washington, and I was right!”

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