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article imageNuns sue strip club for being too close to convent

By Scott Tuttle     Jun 17, 2014 in Odd News
Stone Park - In a Chicago suburb, a group of disgruntled nuns have united against an unwanted neighbor. This strip club, they say, plays loud music as they pray and keeps them up late at night.
The sisters of St. Charles Borromeo Scalabrinians in Melrose Park, Ill. claim the $3 million establishment calling itself Club Allure has violated state zoning laws which prohibit proprietors from establishing adult entertainment facilities within 1,000 feet of schools or places of worship.
Though the strip club was built in the neighboring village of Stone Park, it stands adjacent to the convent as the two villages border each other.
The Thomas More Society, a non-profit law firm, has taken on the lawsuit on the nuns' behalf, and is suing both the strip club and the village of Stone Park for not honoring the law.
"The sisters have every right to pray and work peacefully without disruption from a strip club in their backyard,” said Thomas More Society Vice President Peter Breen to Fox News Latino Monday. "Nor should children have to walk past the strip club’s litter or empty beer and whiskey bottles and used condoms.”
Though Club Allure was opened last September, the suit was filed last Friday in the Cook County Circuit Court. It contains a list of complaints including drunken and violent behavior, litter, and "pulsating and rhythmic staccato-beat noise and flashing neon and or strobe lights" that disturb the sisters as they worship.
According to attorney Dean Krone, the state law is unconstitutional in that it's overly broad in scope. Because of the large number of schools and churches, it would be practically impossible to build a strip club anywhere in the village, which in turn would violate the First Amendment's guaranteed freedom of expression.
The battle over the strip club has been going on since 2009 when the village initially denied the current owners a permit to build Club Allure. When the owners tried to sue, the local government yielded.
"We spent an awful lot of money to make sure that this kind of thing would not occur," said club manager Robert Itzkow. "The whole thing is just a question of 'we don't like you; you don't conform to our religious beliefs."'
Itzkow went on to defend his employees by saying they "aren't monsters. They're daughters; they're mothers, and some of them are Catholics too."
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