Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

27 March 2010

Women's History Month: That stripper pole is someone's office!

Today's Women's History Tidbit:
1900: Effa Manley is born in Philadelphia. From 1935 to 1948 she will run the Newark Eagles, a Negro Leagues baseball team, which she co-owns with her husband.* She is the first woman to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.**

This was originally posted on the AWEARNESS blog. 

At least that's what Quansa Thompson is trying to claim. She's a smart cookie exotic dancer from Washington, DC who is suing her former "employer" for not paying her and her fellow dancers a wage. I put employer in quotes in this context because the owner of the club claims that "he treats dancers as if they were patrons, charging them $20 admission, then letting them keep whatever they earn without any additional fees."

No matter what your stance is on strippers or exotic dancers, I hope that you agree that they are working. They are providing entertainment that draws people in to pay real money to enter an establishment and buy food and drinks. Sure they get paid a lot (at least the ones in the WaPo article do) to entertain, but that doesn't mean that employers should get off the hook. Thompson says that she might start a magazine; I think she should enroll in law school. There are a lot of other women out there who need a gutsy woman like her, who is willing to speak out for her rights as an employee, to stand by them!

And thanks WaPo for an educational and entertaining article. I can't figure out if my favorite line was about Warren Buffet or the safety net.

* Source: 2010 Women Who Dare Engagement Calendar from the Library of Congress 
** Source:  ESPN


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