Dancing is Not a CrimeNYC 24 Jul 2006 12:09 GMT
The event was an effort to gain support in the ongoing battle to make dancing legal in the city of New York, a battle that has existed for the past eighty years. In the year 1926 New York City established cabaret laws in an effort to put an end to interracial interaction which the powers that were felt occurred too often within the jazz scene. Of the many rules within this law, one made dancing in public space illegal, unless that space had a cabaret license, which were and still are extremely hard to get.
The crowd, which strategically gathered on the corner of Mayor Bloomberg’s house, came together to show their fury towards the control the government has permitted itself when it comes to the expressive behavior of dancing, something many New Yorkers feel should be protected under the first amendment. Norman Siegel, an attorney fighting to eradicate the cabaret laws, said, “When you have a law that says you can’t get up and dance when you hear the music that is the beginning of a repressive government.”
Although dancing is a form of expressive behavior, the City’s cabaret laws restrict where an individual is allowed to dance, thus simultaneously restricting where an individual is allowed to practice their constitutional rights. These laws are irrational and unconstitutional. If you want to be able to bust a move in every corner of the five boroughs without worrying that your favorite bar, club or restaurant might be fined thousands of dollars, check out metropolisinmotion.com to see what you can do to prove that “Dancing is Not a Crime!”.