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Feminism in Action: Smokes Bouncer Rejects Men and Women Equally


Photo by MarekChalabala / CC0

Even though American society has progressed, we are still not at a place where women are given equal treatment. Nor are we at a place where it is easy to get into Penn’s sought after bar, Smokes. However, every once in a while, there comes a strong-willed feminist with enough influence to enact change while still enforcing strict guidelines. Smokes’ bouncer Clark Polkins is exactly that. He stands tall in front of the doors and proudly rejects men and women from the bar equally.

According to numerous reports, students have been getting denied left and right from this famous Penn bar. Polkins stated that he "doesn’t see sex or gender." All he sees are underaged Penn kids trying to sneak into Smokes on a Tuesday. In fact, he makes a conscious effort to dismantle the inequalities that occur in society. For example, a male student displaying a Penn card that indicates he is class of 2020 is rejected just as sourly as a female student whose Penn card indicates she is over 21. No discrimination. This bouncer rejects them all. “I don’t even care if they’re over 21. If the underaged men and women can’t get in, how is it fair if I let these other kids in?”

However, one Penn student, Ethan Subbels (C’ 20) said he had no trouble getting in. “I showed up with my fake ID, wore my lucky Sixers jersey, and had a cute girl by my side. He let me in but not the girl. Yeah, I left her, so what? I’m still a nice guy.”