Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Ladies night ban: Party pooper Steve Horner does to Minnesota what he tried to do in CO

It's been quiet on the Colorado bar front since Steve Horner, our anti-ladies night crusader, moved on -- but ladies nights became a hot topic again yesterday when the Fox and Friends morning show featured a debate over the Minnesota Department of Human Rights recently deciding to ban ladies nights, and charging five bars with gender discrimination in pricing.

Host Gretchen Carlson, a former Miss America from Minnesota (and apparent ladies night supporter) moderated the discussion between Fox New's legal analyst Lis Wiehl and self-proclaimed "anti-feminist" Marc Rudov, who wound up comparing dating to prostitution.

In response to Carlson's suggestion that women coming in for ladies night deals benefits male patrons, too, Rudov responded: "Well, what you're just doing is reinforcing the point that I've always made is that dating is legal prostitution. If women aren't going to show up unless they're bought and paid for, that's prostitution."

There's more, lots more, and if it sounds familiar, that's because many of Rudov's arguments are those we've heard from Horner -- who started his crusade against ladies' nights in Minnesota two decades ago and brought it to Denver four years ago.

Many civil complaints and a few court cases later, Horner moved on to Utah, but he's stayed busy. In fact, the five complaints that changed the game in Minnesota were all filed last year by Horner, who was complaining about bars he'd never stepped foot in. That was one of his favorite tactics in Colorado, too, but the Colorado Civil Rights Commission didn't fall for it.

And here's another fun fact: Steve Horner's brother, Tom, is the Independence party candidate for governor in Minnesota.

Here's the Fox News segment:

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun