The constitutional right of freedom of speech protects the speech of adult erotic entertainment. The state, consequently, can not suppress such speech unless it is obscene. This constitutional protection helped to turn adult erotic entertainment into one of the nation's growth industries.
The constitutionally protected speech of adult erotic entertainment includes explicit sex films, nude dancing and erotic books. Various adult land uses sprung up to satisfy an apparent large public demand for this entertainment. Adult film theaters, of course, show filmed reproductions of live sex on a big screen. Some taverns offer nude dancing. Some adult bookstores sell more than books and pictures. Adopting a practice of the beverage industry, they also sell films for consumption both on and off the premises. Some bookstores go farther and offer the customer live nude dancing in a booth with a protective, but transparent glass partition between the .performer and the viewer. Thus, although the basic form of this expression has probably changed very little since ancient times, it clearly appears adaptable to the improvements of modern merchandising.
In effect, however, the recent case of City of Renton v. Playtime Theaters, Inc. may allow the nation's towns and small cities to prohibit the future development of adult speech entertainment uses within their territory.
Clarke, Charles H.
"Freedom of Speech and the Problem of the Lawful Harmful Public Reaction: Adult use Cases of Renton and Mini Theatres,"
Akron Law Review: Vol. 20
, Article 1.
Available at: https://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/akronlawreview/vol20/iss2/1