Nathan L. Hecht

We think a $5 fee presents no greater burden on nude dancing. . . . The fee is not a tax on unpopular speech but a restriction on combining nude dancing, which unquestionably has secondary effects, with the aggravating influence of alcohol consumption.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Nathan L. Hecht, writing for the majority and upholding the state’s “pole tax” in Combs v. Texas Entertainment Association. The ruling overturns a prior decision that found the fee unconstitutional on First Amendment grounds because it singled out protected expression in nude dancing.