Petition Against Local Billboard Continues To Divide Public
A petition was started last week on the website Change.org in an attempt to remove the billboard of a local business.In fact, the petition was later updated to reflect the creator's desire to remove a second billboard from the same business.
The local business in question is Larry Flynt's Hustler Club in Shreveport. The gentleman's club is located at 202 Commerce St in Downtown Shreveport. The billboards in question are near Interstate 20 in Bossier City and Shreveport.
The petition reads:
"Every day I drive past a billboard advertising the latest headliner for the Larry Flint's Hustler Club. The picture changes frequently and depending on the girl being shown, so does the level of suggestiveness. Currently there is a girl licking what I assume is cake from her finger in a very suggestive manner. Our kids are passing this billboard daily. Some are of the age where explanations need to be given and some are just processsing(sp) the images and accepting them as the world in which they live. I feel that I have a right NOT to be exposed to such images and my child has a right to maintain his innocence as long as possible. I worry about the buses of children who pass this every day on their way to school. I worry about our teenage drivers who may be distracted by this billboard as they pass. If the Hustler Club is to maintain an advertisement at that location, I feel it should be in logo and NOT by using graphic and suggestive images.
Edit - It has come to my attention that the same billboard can be seen on I20 Shreveport as well. Both should be removed."
It should be noted, nothing about the Hustler Club or the billboards is illegal. In fact, they're very legal. Most businesses have a right to advertise, unless otherwise ruled by law, like certain levels of tobacco advertisement. Personal feelings do not constitute illegal activity in advertising.
If someone were to censor this business's advertising because of 'feelings', what's next? If legal precedence is set, people offended by gun ownership will use it to have gun shows ads stopped. PETA will try to use the precedence to have every fast food ad pulled, and if it's legal standing, courts will side with precedence.
It's my personal opinion that this is a prime example of the public becoming "snowflakes". You may not personally like it, I don't like some businesses and their ads or logos, and every person reading this has one or two places they feel the same about, but most of us aren't crying to elected officials to punish businesses for the sake of our feelings.
I'm not the only one who feels this way, there are plenty of anti-petition posts across Shreveport and Bossier social media. One of those posts read:
"Think twice before you do something stupid, like take away a business's right to advertise... DON'T sign this petition. YOUR business could be next!!!"
Which is at the core of this discussion. Would you be willing to sacrifice the rights of other businesses to advertise just to be able to stop one you might not like?
Shreveport and Bossier still need more jobs. The area is in desperate need to attract jobs. Would it be appropriate to advertise our area to the business community as a place where the public will try to shut you down if they suddenly don't agree with your choice of advertising? Shreveport should remain open for ALL business.