New Yorks infamous party police stormed into five of the Citys best known clubs last weekend and padlocked their doors, following a 9 month undercover investigation into alleged drug sales and underage drinking at the venues.
Avalon (at the converted 6th Avenue premises formerly known as Limelight) and Spirit were the two biggest clubs issued with temporary closure orders, alongside Splash, View and Club Deep and all five venues will stay shut indefinitely until licence hearings are held, said the New York Post.
Pacha New York chief Eddie Dean was sympathetic to his fellow club owners plight, telling Skrufff lets face it, these clubs are expensive to build and expensive to operate, no club owner in his right mind condones this type of underage/drug behaviour. There is so much more at stake.
It is a very scary situation and these raids are a clear message from the NYPD (New York Police Department), theyve ran a 9 month investigation which certainly isnt a typical inspection. Post 9/11 the NYPD has taken a suffocating approach to all crime, if there is any type of crime they move in and suffocate the situation. Closing five clubs in one night seems quite suffocating, doesnt it, he continued.
What will be interesting to see is the follow through; did they get their pound of flesh or will they continue to suffocate these venues into permanent closure? I can only hope there will come a time where the clubs and the NYPD will work together, Eddie added.
The raids happened two days before a Supreme Court Judge upheld New Yorks notorious Cabaret Laws, which continue to criminalise dancing in bars and restaurants virtually everywhere in the city (apart from the less than 300 licensed establishments).
Judge Michael Stallman made his ruling after local nightspot the Gotham West Coast Swing Club challenged the law on the grounds that people have a constitutional right to dance where they like, though he conceded that the Prohibition era legislation outlawing dancing was less than perfect.
"Surely, the Big Apple is big enough to find a way to let people dance, he suggested. However, city official Kate Ahlers disagreed and instead welcomed the ruling as a victory for New York residents seeking a quiet life, the New York Daily News reported.
No York Links:
http://www.indie-music.com/modules.php?name=News&file=print&sid=733 (How prohibition-era laws ban dancing in New York City and earn Mayor Rudy Giuliani comparisons to Hitler . . . "Establishments that allow dancing without a license can be cited by Consumer Affairs and subject to fines and stringent sanctions, including the possibility of being padlocked." -- NYC Department of Consumer Affairs . . .)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087277 (Footloose- the movie: Plot Outline: A city boy comes to a small town where rock music and dancing have been banned . . .)
http://www.legalizedancingnyc.com (While it sounds like a joke, the NYC Cabaret Law is very real and has for the last several years adversely affected our city's economy, culture and community. LEGALIZE DANCING NYC, an umbrella group of pro-dance people and organizations, exists because it really IS illegal to dance in New York City . . .)
Jonty Skrufff (JontySkrufff.com)