It ain’t that hard to tell ‘em apart
Batavia has struggled with them; St. Charles seems to be overrun with them; and now Oswego is considering all sorts of regulations to contend with them. And the “them” in this particular case is “those” kind of massage businesses, or as they’re known in popular parlance, “massage parlors.”
But while our local city councils dither and debate about how to determine the difference between legitimate and not-so-legitimate spa businesses, if they just took a small step outside that municipal forest, those aldermen might see that the State of Illinois has things well in hand.
Put more simply, with the necessary laws already on the books, it’s simply a matter of local law enforcement applying them.
As far as identifying the “spas” that offer those “extra” services, it really isn’t rocket science. So, in the vein of Jeff Foxworthy’s “You might be a redneck,” here goes:
1. If the massage business has an Asian or single letter name:
Shangri La Spa and Sauna
- Lotus Spa
- Golden Spa
- Lucky Massage
- Jade Massage
- U Spa, M Spa or T Spa
It might not be a legitimate business.
2. If the massage “therapists” are all young to middle-aged Asian women, it might not be a legitimate business.
3. If their ads and literature primarily target men, it might not be a legitimate business.
4. If the front door is always locked and you have to make an appointment to get in, it might not be a legitimate business.
5. If the “spa” is located in a low-end strip mall, it might not be a legitimate business.
6. If the “spa” is open from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m., it might not be a legitimate massage business.
7. If there’s an ATM in the lobby, it might not be a legitimate massage business.
8. And here’s the big one! If the front windows are tinted black or they’re sealed tighter than a year old jar of pickles, it might not be a legitimate business.
So, now that we’ve identified the obvious offenders, how do municipalities get rid of them? Easy!
Illinois requires real massage therapists to be licensed. That means fingerprinting, a background check and a diploma from a legitimate massage school which generally takes two years of intense study.
So, whenever one of those “businesses” pops up, all the local gendarmes or code enforcement officers have to do is pop in and ask for a copy of those licenses which must be kept on the premises at all times.
If the owner can’t come up with the paperwork, then you can arrest the “therapists” and shut down the business – no undercover police sting necessary. And if you make those visits on a monthly or quarterly basis, that’ll be the end of massage parlors in your town!
The problem is, whenever city councils get together to further regulate massage enterprises, like the proverbial camel designed by the committee aiming for a horse, the new rules always seem to hurt the legitimate businesses.
Too little, too late Bruce!
It’s actually kind of an innovative campaign commercial that rotates through our neighboring Republican governors who proceed to thank Speaker Michael Madigan for sending Illinois businesses their way.
While there’s a certainly some truth to that ad, and it certainly would’ve worked the first time he ran, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has displayed absolutely no capacity to work with or beat Mike Madigan on absolutely anything.
And with his Democratic challengers similarly beating up on the Speaker, Rauner’s re-messaging attempt falls completely flat.
I’ll ask it one more time, who the hell is advising this guy?
But it gets worse
While Rauners’ ad is inconsequential, just when you thought his messaging couldn’t get any worse, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy’s current TV effort is downright cringe worthy.
Using his assassinated father, Robert Kennedy, as a backdrop, the candidate promises to put an end to Illinois gun violence. While that’s certainly a laudable endeavor, using a dead Kennedy to make your point might not provoke the kind of visceral response the campaign is looking for.
Maybe it’s just me, but viewing that commercial for the first time left me with a post fingernails scratching down a blackboard kind of feeling.
All I can say is, it’s infuriating to watch Kennedy and Democratic competitor Daniel Biss race to the electoral bottom. They’ve actually managed to make charisma-less frontrunner J. B. Pritzker look good by comparison.
Can’t we come up with better candidates than this?
All Tri-Cities sports rivalries aside, I have to tip my hat to those Batavia Bulldog football players who pulled off a 21 – 14 overtime win against Lake Zurich in the Class 7A state final Saturday at NIU’s Huskie Field.
Considering the massive wear and tear of the average football season, any team with the mental fortitude to pull out the big game in overtime after surrendering a 14 point lead deserves a lot of credit.
Well done, boys!