Glossy cards emblazoned with graphic images of scantily clad or nude women may soon become a thing of the past in western Queens.So the kiddies won't be able to see scatily-clad women.
The state legislature recently took aim at prostitution by making the distribution of "chica" cards a crime punishable by fines and jail time. Gov. Cuomo is expected to sign the bill into law as early as this week.
"This is a good first step," said state Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst), who championed the law. "What I want to do is drive out prostitution from Roosevelt Ave. and at the same time help these victims of human trafficking."
The cards have phone numbers to escort agencies and are mostly handed out to men walking along Roosevelt Ave. in Jackson Heights.
But instead of winding up in their pockets, many of the X-rated cards are tossed onto the street and wind up in the hands of curious children.
The kids "start trading the cards as if they were baseball cards," Peralta said. "Parents are so livid."
The new law hopes to curb prostitution in Jackson Heights and Corona by making it tougher for pimps and sex workers to advertise their services, he said.
Images of fruits and vegetables are already beginning to replace lewd images on the cards in anticipation of the crackdown, Peralta said.
Assemblyman Francisco Moya (D-Jackson Heights), who introduced the bill in the Assembly, said it sends a "clear message to the community that we take this issue very, very seriously."
Parent Louise Mulvihill, 52, of Jackson Heights, said she certainly does. The first time her 8-year-old son picked up one of the cards, she said she was a bit "taken aback."
"I said, 'Oh, my. This is not for little boys,'" Mulvihill recalled. "I was hoping he wouldn't ask me a lot of questions."
But on the last Sunday every June they get to see this parading down Fifth Avenue, where Governor Cuomo was treated as a hero the other day.
Which image is more offensive?