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Even in San Francisco

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Yes, even in the famously tolerant City by the Bay people are getting fed up with the panhandlers, winos, and druggies plopped down on the sidewalks.  Terry Collins reports for AP:

San Francisco voters have approved a controversial ordinance that will soon restrict when to sit or lie on city sidewalks.

Voters on Tuesday supported Measure L, known as the "sit/lie" ordinance, that would ban sitting or lying on sidewalks between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m.
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After the city's Board of Supervisors voted down Gascon's proposal in June, Mayor Gavin Newsom to take the issue straight to voters.

Newsom became motivated after seeing a guy smoking crack cocaine while taking his infant daughter on a stroll shortly after moving to the iconic Haight-Ashbury neighborhood earlier this year.

All together now:  I am shocked, shocked to learn that there are druggies in the Haight.

3 Comments

Surely unconstitutional on several grounds, including equal protection and freedom of association (it would seem to ban traditional sit-down protests)?

See Roulette v. City of Seattle, 97 F.3d 300 (CA9 1996).

Thank you for the pointer. I agree with Judge Pregerson's dissent, I just don't see how a 'sit-in' on public ground is not a form of conduct that expresses an opinion, or at least I disagree with the majority's dismissal of the argument without conducting any kind of traditional First Amendment analysis such as whether the restrictions are unduly burdensome.

The opinion also states that the Seattle ordinance had several exceptions (detailed in footnote 1). Does the San Francisco ordinance also contain the same ind of exceptions, particularly those related to demonstrations?

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