2012-06-20 / Features


Western Queens Residents Stand Against Smut

orno Has To Go!’ screamed the headline of an article that appeared in the February 23, 1994 issue of the Gazette that told the story of area residents protesting an adult video store in Astoria.

The Coalition for the Protection of Children, an organization formed in November of ’93 by concerned citizens and elected officials, marched with placards in front of a video store at 30-05 Astoria Blvd. The store, which sold sexually explicit movies, had moved from its original location on Ditmars Boulevard sparking the outrage. City Council Speaker Peter Vallone Sr. was quoted on the issue: “As this type of business tries to get a foothold on a street near a residential community, citizens are forced to take civic action. Queens is leading the way!”

The fight against smut was still on 18 years later when the Gypsy Rose, a proposed adult entertainment establishment at 42-50 21st St. in Long Island City, was denied a liquor license by the State Liquor Authority.

Local activists including CB 2 Chairman Joe Conley and elected officials including state Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Catherine Nolan and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer spoke out and wrote numerous letters to the State Liquor Authority throughout 2011 denouncing their application.

–Jason D. Antos

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