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So this passion party vibrates? Not in Texas!
December 21, 2003 9:45 PM   Subscribe

A concealed weapon that's not allowed in Texas. Mother of three, Joanna Webb, could be put into jail for a year for holding a Passion Party where she sold a vibrator to undercover narcotics agents. Don't they realize it's just for "therapeutic massage?"
posted by drezdn (64 comments total)

 
I don't see what the problem is. the scripture is very clear on whether or not masturbation is ok.
posted by mcsweetie at 10:04 PM on December 21, 2003


The Taliban would be proud.
posted by homunculus at 10:16 PM on December 21, 2003


So this vibrator, it vibrates?
posted by nthdegx at 10:18 PM on December 21, 2003


If it had a "shoot to kill" setting, it would have been legal.
posted by stevis at 10:20 PM on December 21, 2003


Mightn't it be possible to build vibrators which could function as deadly weapons? As one shot derringers, say. The bullet would exit towards the rear, to prevent deadly accidents.

Announcing the "Little Guardian...It's all you need - and more!"
posted by troutfishing at 10:30 PM on December 21, 2003


"The arrest of Webb in Cleburne, a small town 50 miles southwest of Dallas, was the first time that any of the company's 3,000 sales consultants have been busted"

3,000 sales consultants are still free? No wonder we're at code orange!
posted by homunculus at 10:32 PM on December 21, 2003


And what if they catch you with an especially long, bumpy cucumber?

"We held her on suspicion of improper relations with certain cylindrical vegetables - no cooking utensils were in sight...."
posted by troutfishing at 10:34 PM on December 21, 2003


oops, just saw your title, drezdn: humblest apoloogies ;)
posted by nthdegx at 10:35 PM on December 21, 2003


how does one get to be a member of the texas dildo police squad? that sounds like a sweet job.
posted by PrinceValium at 10:58 PM on December 21, 2003


Hurrah for American Xtian fundamentalism! Somewhere Ashcroft is smiling that creepy smile of his.
posted by skallas at 10:58 PM on December 21, 2003


And - what happens if Texas undercover agents catch women with oddly shaped, unloaded (and concealed) handguns? I'm sorry ma'am - I 'm going to have to arrest you....there's no ammo in that gun. I suspect yuo may have been using that weapn for un-ladylike purposes!" - "Why officer, whatever do you mean?......." - "I'm sorry ma' am, but I'm not at liberty to state what those purposes might be...."
posted by troutfishing at 11:00 PM on December 21, 2003


"but if'n yawl step inta muh croozer, maam, why ah'd be 'bliged to 'splain!"
posted by quonsar at 11:05 PM on December 21, 2003


These Orgasmofascists appear to have a cell in the UK. They even have a website with a terrorist training video.
posted by homunculus at 11:05 PM on December 21, 2003


The dildo is a replacement for the male phallus.
The gun is an enhancement for the male phallus.
One makes men feel weak, one makes men feel strong.
Not a feminist, just saying, sometimes it's funny.
posted by Hildago at 11:39 PM on December 21, 2003


"Stand back! I have a dildo and I know how to use it!"
"When dildos are outlawed, only outlaws will have dildos."
"They can have my dildo when they pry it out of my cold dead hand."

Also, be on the lookout for sawed-off broom handles.
posted by mischief at 11:53 PM on December 21, 2003


First they came for the bong sellers, and I did not speak out because I was not a stoner. Then they came for the vibrator sellers...
posted by homunculus at 12:02 AM on December 22, 2003


It's a shame that the Lawrence decision didn't strike down all of Texas's weird sex-related laws in one fell swoop. This will eventually end up on an appellate level where the Attorney General of Texas will have to argue that the state has a compelling interest in preventing the citizens from having mechanically-enhanced orgasms. I, for one, wish that such proceedings could be televised, as I'd love to see him try to keep a straight face while dishing up something which approximates a reasonable argument to the court.
posted by Dreama at 12:15 AM on December 22, 2003


Not a feminist, just saying, sometimes it's funny.

Through my life I often find that "funny" explanations like that are strikingly accurate, if only on a subconscious level.
posted by nath at 12:19 AM on December 22, 2003


Sorry to link to Yahoo news, but this article had a couple more pieces of info, namely:

Adult stores sell sex toys around the law by posting signs that say "sold only as novelties."

So, if she were selling them as doorstops, then it would be a-ok?
posted by gatorae at 1:31 AM on December 22, 2003


Doorstops... egg-whisks...

"They can have my dildo when they pry it out of my cold dead snatch."

Weapons of Masturbatory Delight found in Texas.

Does Texas allow the sale of hard-core porn, but not a frikkin' dildo?
posted by Blue Stone at 3:12 AM on December 22, 2003


There was an article on the front page of Le Figaro last week about how you can be fined in NYC now for having an ashtray in your office desk - even if not actually using it - and the paper noted that it was okay to have a loaded handgun in the same drawer. (Though you'd probably get in trouble if the gun were really just a novelty lighter, they speculated.)
posted by CunningLinguist at 4:11 AM on December 22, 2003


The fascination of fundamentalist with sex, and others having sex. its really dysfunctional. I just don't understand it.
posted by MrLint at 4:15 AM on December 22, 2003


As a Texas resident I'm glad that all of the other crimes have been solved now police can concentrate on dildos.

Seriously though, laws like this are just plain stupid. And I'm certain the next time the legislature meets this law will not be addressed. The good old boys in the legislature aren't going to be talking about dildos [although they should look in the mirror].
posted by birdherder at 4:24 AM on December 22, 2003


Even I think this is ridiculous.
posted by konolia at 4:35 AM on December 22, 2003


re: konolia. Well, that pretty much closes the discussion then.
posted by mischief at 4:49 AM on December 22, 2003


re: konolia. Damn, and I had something really interesting to say on the subject. Oh well, next time.
posted by waltb555 at 5:45 AM on December 22, 2003


Can someone explain what the law is that was being violated? Were the undercover cops also underage? Honestly, I don't understand what's illegal in this situation.

Meanwhile:

Not a feminist, just saying, sometimes it's funny.

So you don't believe in equal rights for women? 'Cause that's all the word "feminist" means.
posted by notclosed at 5:59 AM on December 22, 2003


> The dildo is a replacement for the male phallus.
> The gun is an enhancement for the male phallus.
> One makes men feel weak, one makes men feel strong.

Actually, as we've been reeducated and consciousness-raised to understand, everything is an understudy for the (redundancy elided) phallus: dildos, cucumbers, aircraft, automobiles, guns, swords, trains, busses, cigars (Freud was wrong,) toadstools, skyscrapers, the U.S. Army, everything. Doesn't make me feel either weak or strong, just proud. Never knew how dominant I was until they went to such lengths to tell me.
posted by jfuller at 6:11 AM on December 22, 2003


yes. i for one am *very* proud of my vibrator.
posted by eatdonuts at 6:28 AM on December 22, 2003


Yer welcome. The phallus format is unpatented and open source, anyone's welcome to make knockoffs.
posted by jfuller at 6:46 AM on December 22, 2003


Freud was NOT wrong:

- "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar"

Wicked, I'm just thinking of the premise for a new Law Enforcement reality show based outta Texas... x: Texas Dildo Ranger ? The Lone Gunwoman? Or should that be "The Lonely Gunwoman"?

And Konolia did not close the thread, Homunculus did...
posted by jkaczor at 6:48 AM on December 22, 2003


First they came for the bong sellers, and I did not speak out because I was not a stoner. Then they came for the vibrator sellers...

*fires up gun-shaped vibrating bong, flips Ashcroft the bird*

All, bullshit aside, can you imagine what the testimony is gonna be like? Somewhere in a Texas courtroom, a stenography machine is going to be covered in spewed coffee.
posted by jonmc at 7:00 AM on December 22, 2003


jfuller - you forgot to mention our computers, keyboards and modems (y'know - extension of thought into cyberspace?....)

It's all sex sex sex for Freudian theory obsessed feminist theorists (a noisy but tiny minority of all feminists) and most Freudians. Yung's main disagreement with Freud was just for this - not all motivations underlying human behavior can be reduced to sex. But science is supplanting both views - ultimately it's all about the reproduction or survival of one's DNA. But evolution has generated many complex strategies to this end, and not all of them are directly about sex. Behaviors which enhance the survival of genetic kin, for example, and, indeed, in-species altruism in general serve that end as well.

But what of "The fascination of fundamentalists with sex, and others having sex. its really dysfunctional. I just don't understand it." (notclosed) ? - Well, they're fascinated with sex - like most healthy humans, especially those of childbearing age - but many have this damn religious ideology that all sex outside of sex specifically for procreation is bad, 'mkay. [ Konolia, I don't mean to tar all fundamentalist christians here and - for that matter - my fundamentalist brother indulges, I believe, in recreational sex ]

For such "no sex for fun" fundamentalists, it's the element of repression and the lure of the forgiven which infuses the subject of sex, for them, with that special extra zip. Because they can't acknowledge their bodily urges and see them as sinful - or even evil (except when actively trying for conception) - they wind up, predictably, obsessing on sex.

The reason for banning dildos, or in general trying to restrict the sexual enjoyment of others, is quite simple really.

It's displaced jealousy - if they can't have fun, then no one can!
posted by troutfishing at 7:01 AM on December 22, 2003


So you don't believe in equal rights for women? 'Cause that's all the word "feminist" means.

Yes, and when did he stop beating his wife? and how early in the morning does he start drinking? interesting debate technique you got there. You know as well as anyone that the word "feminist" has all kinds of connotations to all kinds of people, so take your phony stunned outrage elsewhere please.
posted by jonmc at 7:06 AM on December 22, 2003


jonmc - They're gonna have to put plastic covers on those stenography machines. Meanwhile, I see a book on the horizon....

"The Dildo Wars"

(why do I keep returning to this thread ? It's like it's obsessing me or something....)
posted by troutfishing at 7:06 AM on December 22, 2003


Orgasmofascists

Brilliant.
posted by rushmc at 7:07 AM on December 22, 2003


[Oops - I meant to type "...the lure of the forbidden" in that long comment of mine - the "forgiven", as a lure, is pretty limp. It was a Freudian slip. ]
posted by troutfishing at 7:11 AM on December 22, 2003


Truth be told, trout, I was more concerned about the "extra zip" part of the comment. Do you have unresolved issues surrounding Miracle Whip?
posted by jonmc at 7:13 AM on December 22, 2003


Also, if this continues, are we gonna be seeing dildo dealers on street corners opening up their trenchcoats to display their wares- "Check this one out, baby, 9 inches. I'll even throw in the batterries and some lube..."

Then of course we'll the interesting spectre of FBI agents posing with intercepted shipments of sex toys on the evening news.

But, guys, we gotta fight this, they'll be coming to our house to take away our socks and Jergen's next.
posted by jonmc at 7:20 AM on December 22, 2003


jonmc - Whatever do you mean? I only use it for strictly medicinal purposes.
posted by troutfishing at 7:21 AM on December 22, 2003


Just don't let them try and take away the Intern--

NO CARRIER
posted by Vidiot at 7:44 AM on December 22, 2003


Yeah yeah, this law sucks, blah blah. Texans, write your legislature.

But in the end, it is the job of a businessperson to read, understand, and follow all the laws pertaining to his/her business. Knowing how to follow the law will greatly reduce the risk of arrest, prosecution, and injury. And remember to always wear safety glasses when handling a simulated phallus.
posted by ilsa at 7:49 AM on December 22, 2003


You know as well as anyone that the word "feminist" has all kinds of connotations to all kinds of people

Right, and the more people say "I'm not a feminist, but...", the more the word becomes the property of the same people who succeeded in making "liberal" a pejorative term.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:02 AM on December 22, 2003


To be honest, I think it's the most vocal practitioners of feminism that give it a bad name.
posted by cell at 8:14 AM on December 22, 2003


The one thing that's certain about feminism is no one can say it means only this one thing. Maybe forty years ago that would have worked, but not today. If you want to say you believe in equal rights, the only working way to do that today is to say "I believe in equal rights"
posted by dagnyscott at 8:24 AM on December 22, 2003


Right, and the more people say "I'm not a feminist, but...", the more the word becomes the property of the same people who succeeded in making "liberal" a pejorative term.

Fair enough, but the way notclosed phrased it, it's like he was implying that anyone who dosen't declare him/herself a "feminist" is somehow a woman-hating opressor, which no matter how worthy the cause, is a detestable attitude.

To be honest, I think it's the most vocal practitioners of feminism that give it a bad name.

Depends on which vocal feminists you're talking about wackjobs like Andrea Dworkin and Catherine MacKinnon, then you have a point. But those two are often deliberately highlighted to misrepresent what feminism is truly about.
posted by jonmc at 8:29 AM on December 22, 2003


Adult stores sell sex toys around the law by posting signs that say "sold only as novelties."

That's right. What seems to have gotten Webb into trouble is not selling the item to the cops, but actually describing to them how to use it.

Some of the people in town think that what really got her in trouble were her micro-miniskirts.
posted by Slothrup at 8:36 AM on December 22, 2003


troutfishing: "The Dildo Wars"

Interestingly enough.

Excellent little film that made the film show circuit year before last. It's specifically about Texas' wierd dildo related laws.
posted by Swifty at 9:20 AM on December 22, 2003


birdherder: Seriously though, laws like this are just plain stupid. And I'm certain the next time the legislature meets this law will not be addressed. The good old boys in the legislature aren't going to be talking about dildos

Go find the Dildo Diaries if you want to completely lose faith in the system.

They got archive footage from the Texas legislature from when this, or a similar, law was passed. And, sure enough, the good old boys got up and discussed it. It would be hysterical if it the result hadn't been so idiotic.
posted by Swifty at 9:32 AM on December 22, 2003


Feminism isn't about fighting for equal rights for women, it's about better rights for women.

Nowhere are feminists fighting for less access to their children, or for fathers to also have the unilateral right to abort.

Great story in the news about this. Apparently women do better than men mental-health-wise, if they're married. It's better for men if they're in a common-law relationship than if they're married.

And the proposal: as women may be worse off in common-law relationships because of lesser protection regarding property-rights than if married - the law regarding common-law relationships should be changed to give females in common-law relationships parity with those in marriage.

Resulting in men being worse off in both types of relationship!

Ah, equalllllity.
posted by Blue Stone at 9:45 AM on December 22, 2003


We've talked about texas and sex toys before.

Not a callout for double post, because it's not, just an addendum.
posted by Ynoxas at 10:09 AM on December 22, 2003


The fascination of fundamentalists with sex, and others having sex. its really dysfunctional. I just don't understand it.

Personally, I see fundamentalists as the largest BDSM community on the planet. They fetishize everything, pervert an demean the act, and loooooove to dole out punishment and shame.
posted by badstone at 10:38 AM on December 22, 2003


( description of "Dildo Diaries" ) "Any film that manages to get liberal columnist Molly Ivins, porn star and performance artist Annie Sprinkle, and adult industry lobbyist Kat Sunlove into a film -- surrounded by dildos of enormous size -- is a film to watch.
"Dildo Diaries" is a humorous and straightforward documentary about anti-sex laws in Texas and, more generally but to a lesser degree, the United States. The film is billed as a look only at Texas, but its reach is actually much wider than that.
The film opens with an investigation --led by Ivins herself -- into the anti-sex toy legislation in the state of Texas."
- Swifty, thanks. That's priceless.
posted by troutfishing at 10:49 AM on December 22, 2003


Is That a Perfectly Legal, Anatomically Correct Condom Education Model, or Are You Just Happy to See Me? (Austin alt-weekly piece from 2000 -- good explanation of the law, history of enforcement and non-enforcement, creative ways that local sex shops get around the law)
posted by Daze at 10:51 AM on December 22, 2003


Texas: Where the killing's easy and ain't no damned woman had an orgasm in over a hunnert years, just like God intended.
posted by fenriq at 2:30 PM on December 22, 2003


Would this law be part of the state's penile code?

*rimshot*
posted by jpoulos at 2:50 PM on December 22, 2003


Everytime a woman has an orgasm, God kills an American Eagle.
posted by homunculus at 2:54 PM on December 22, 2003


I've always thought that an even more ignorant part of the law is where it says if I own more than 6 of the "obscene devices" I am guilty of "intent to promote". Promote what I wonder? My own healthy sex life? Do they think I am going to run up and down the streets knocking on doors and evangelizing the joys of dildos?

Will someone please remind me why I still live in Texas?!

Oh yeah, I just bought a house and I am too broke to move far, far away. Though I have to admit that it adds an extra special "spark" to the fun of getting my entire collection out and knowing that at any moment I could be charged with a Class A misdemeanor for owning these evil pieces of vinyl and plastic.
posted by Orb at 4:07 PM on December 22, 2003


x x x x Deep in the heart of Texas!
posted by obloquy at 7:18 PM on December 22, 2003


Won't someone PLEASE think of the texas dudes who have to put up with them varmint vibrators and the horrible disgusting things women (oh god, even men!) do with them?! This website is so biased.
posted by Keyser Soze at 8:18 PM on December 22, 2003


Will someone please remind me why I still live in Texas?!

Barbecue, football and spiffy headgear?
posted by jonmc at 8:37 PM on December 22, 2003


jonmc: Ok, those are three great reasons. The fact that it might be 70 degrees on Xmas Day might be another one. :D
posted by Orb at 9:27 PM on December 22, 2003


The fact that it might be 70 degrees on Xmas Day might be another one.

It's 55 in Wisconsin right now, which once you get used to a few weeks of 20 or less, feels like 70.
posted by drezdn at 10:39 PM on December 22, 2003


Jonmc, thanks for defending me from the pedants, but I basically just ignore them usually. It's good to finally learn the single, universally accepted, unambiguous definition of feminism, though.
posted by Hildago at 4:44 PM on December 25, 2003


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