This weekend, the Power Exchange sex club, one of the few in the city that welcomes more than gay bio-men, was busted by police at its new Tenderloin location last Friday night, ostensibly because of permit violations. It had been facing some ridiculous backlash. Was it really because of transphobia? Commenter robintv posted this eyewitness report. We've been unable to confirm robintv's identity, but if you were there or have any other information please post it in the comments.
Intolerance closes the Power Exchange club in San Francisco
Late Friday night the forces of intolerance prevailed in San Francisco, using the San Francisco government to do their bidding.
Around 10:30pm, I heard voices telling everyone to leave the premises, and saw a large number of uniformed San Francisco fire and police personnel had entered the Power Exchange club (PE) at 34 Mason Street. The PE usually is not real busy till after midnight, so there was not a large number of people inside. The whole process was peaceful, and from what I saw, the police and fire dept personnel were courteous and discreet and just following orders and there were no cuffs, no id checks, no photos, we were just told to leave the club.
After exiting, we milled around outside the PE talking with each other, passerbys, local residents, and M Powers, the PE owner. People continued to arrive at PE by foot and cabs, including a number of transgender (TG) women who frequented the Otis St location and were returning to the PE for their first time at the new Mason St. location. They were returning to the only space where they could safely be themselves, socialize with other TG women and friends and meet people who are attracted to TG women, without risk of being verbally abused, beaten, or even murdered. Many, including myself, have been going to the PE for over 10 years.
For many, the PE has been a sanctuary of tolerance and acceptance in a world of intolerance, persecution and pain.
As I stood there on a beautiful, warm, September SF night, it was difficult for me to believe that this was happening in San Francisco, where the politicians give a lot of lip service to how tolerant SF is.
I believe the PE has limited resources and lawyers are very costly. A business can be right and the city wrong, but still loose if the business has used up its resources in proving it is right, and can not reopen. Thus, even if PE is right, which I suspect they are, they can still be forced to stay closed and intolerant haters will prevail in forcing their religious/moral values on others using the San Francisco government as a forceful vehicle to do so.
What to do?
Will your favorite club/venue/ business be the next target of the intolerance crusade?