To the editor:
In Rebecca Williams’ smug defense of city officials’ holy war against the Pink Pony [Brookhaven Reporter, March 7-20], she states that “it is both a proven fact and common knowledge” that such businesses hurt the community in a number of ways. However, the city has yet to offer any proof that this is true of the Pink Pony, which has been in business here for over 20 years. Surely, they would be able to offer evidence that the Pink Pony has been detrimental to our area if such were the case.
Instead, they used reports of conditions and incidents at sexually-oriented business in other locales to justify passing this ordinance, which would effectively shut down the Pink Pony, throw hundreds of people out of work, and deny its customers the right to enjoy what the club has to offer them.
City officials are treating the Pink Pony unfairly by refusing to try to reach a solution that would allow the club to continue operating peacefully as it has since 1991.
Williams also sanctimoniously proclaims that this ordinance is similar to the one passed by DeKalb County, but, unlike the county, the city is not willing to accept money to allow the club to ignore the law. However, the people who pushed to incorporate Brookhaven drew the city’s boundaries to include the Pony, and used the projected revenues from it to advance their argument that the city was financially feasible.
Williams and Mayor [J. Max] Davis and the rest of the proponents for the city weren’t concerned about what kind of business it was at that time. If they wanted to allow the club to continue operating and still have their ordinance, they could accede to its request to be de-annexed from Brookhaven. But they are not so high-minded as to allow valuable commercial property to slip from their jurisdiction.
Businesses looking for a home in Brookhaven should take the city’s actions toward the Pink Pony as a warning. City officials might welcome you initially, but later decide that they don’t approve of the kind of business you’re in, after all. Then you may have to fight the city to save your business.