San Diego, CA — On Friday, July 11, 1997, at 10 p.m., citizens will rally against the San Diego juvenile curfew. Rallies will be held every night, from 10 p.m. to Midnight, at Mission Bay Park, across from the roller coaster, until the City Council of San Diego repeals the curfew law. The rallies will allow all citizens under the age of 18 to legally avoid the curfew by exercising their First Amendment rights.
Ã¬The law unfairly discriminates against people because of their age,Ã® said Dave Doctor, organizer of the rally. Ã¬In every age group, there are certain criminals that commit crimes, but we already have laws to punish these criminals. The curfew law was not written to reduce crime, it was written to persecute teenagers.Ã®
Ã¬In the history of America, many persecuted groups have demanded equal treatment under the law,Ã® said Doctor. Ã¬Blacks demanded the end of segregation, women fought for the right to vote, and now, in San Diego, citizens under the age of 18 will rally to repeal the curfew.Ã®
The original curfew law from 1947 was ruled unconstitutional by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in early June. The court wrote that the curfew was vague and that the exceptions did not make allowances for a number of constitutionally protected activities.
On June 18, 1997, the City Council unanimously adopted a new juvenile curfew law. To prevent another court case, the new law includes numerous exceptions which allow a minor to be outside after 10 p.m. These exceptions include, but are not limited to, a minor accompanied by a parent or other responsible adult and a minor exercising First Amendment rights protected by the United States Constitution.
On Friday night, citizens of San Diego will exercise their First Amendment Rights by rallying against the curfew. There will be a press conference at 10:30 p.m., at Mission Bay Park, across from the roller coaster, on Friday, July 11, 1997