Credit Ireland for deciding to slowly stumble into the world of 20th century morality, just a few years late. News came from Dublin last week that nearly 50 companies (which must be, what, about half the companies in Ireland?) have signed a pledge not to spend corporate money on strippers.
Unless Guinness is in the mix. Kidding! In fact, the pledge is binding even if Irish whiskey is involved, making it all the more impressive. The drive to keep corporate spenders out of strip clubs was launched this summer by the Ruhama Group, a nonprofit dedicated to helping members of the sex industry, while simultaneously having a stripper-like name for itself. The group says many strippers are soon forced into prostitution, which is even drearier under the gray skies of Ireland than it is normally.
According to Reuters, this isn't the first anti-stripping push the verdant country has seen recently; a branch of a London-based club was closed in less than a year after it was protested on a daily basis.
Is this prudishness a viable strategy for a nation best known for beer and fighting? High-flying financial firms in the US have promised not to stuff their expense accounts into garter belts for years, but most choose to pay millions in fines after being scandalously exposed in the tabloids rather than actually comply.
Considering the fact that the Irish Times newspaper is a prominent signer of the pledge, maybe it's not such a stretch after all - journalists are too attractive to pay for love. Right?