Cyber Swing/Polyamory Resource Center
Promoting Intimacy and Other-Centered Sexuality
3/2/04 Report on SWING LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE
Report on Legal Issues & Swinging as a Growing Busines
Phoenix Gone Wild Enforcing Ban on Swing
Action Plan To Fight for Swingers Privacy Rights
Everyone Can Fight For Swing Club Rights
Many U.S. Cities Watching Phoenix
& Waiting To Also Outlaw Swing Clubs
Help By Letter Campaign
City Of Phoenix Raids Swing Clubs
after Declaring all Swing Clubs Illegal
April 2003 Update
Phoenix Swing Clubs loose Arizona Court of Appeals Case
Phoenix Swing clubs lost another challenge to the law making swing clubs illegal in Phoenix. The Arizona Court of Appeals, upheld the convictions of the four arrested club owners for running a "sex club" after the law made them illegal in Phoenix. The club owners lost an Appeal in Maricopa County Superior Court, then failed to win a U.S. District Court injunction against enforcement of the ordinance. They then asked the Arizona appellate court to intervene based on the argument that the law is unconstitutionally vague and violates freedom of expression protected by the First Amendment. The three-judge panel unanimously rejected those claims.
Some of the clubs arguments seemed very weak to me. Such as that certain acts done at swing clubs should be legal based on the fact that if done at strip clubs or adult motels they are legal. The judges used common sense as well as legal precedents to easily deny the clubs arguments. They even made it clear it was illegal to touch a women's breast, even incidentally in a strip club since this is a terrible sex act, that the strip club law prohibits. IT seems to me the law is very clear its the constitutionality of the law that is at issue. Even more outrageous is the reasons the city uses to justify the law!
City officials contend the ordinance protects the public decency and prevents
the spread of STD's (totally bogus argument of course)
See Text of Decision in pdf format.
Still pending before various courts are the 2nd round of charges for violation of the same law against running a swing club that were the result of the police raids on the clubs in September 2002 when instead of just being sent citations, they were arrested and jailed until bond was made. Also pending is the $15million federal lawsuit filed against the city.
It appears all has been lost at the city and state level, but the Federal Cases are now pending which will have a far wider impact on all swing clubs in the U.S. I believe the appeal from the rejection of the injunction against the City to enforce is still on Appeal at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
In the meantime, all clubs continue to be open, with one of the raided clubs recently opening with new ownership. They are taking measures to be sure they are even more "private" than they were before the raids. The "private club" issue doesn't seem to help avoid the Phoenix law, but might be helpful in arguing constitutional issues.
There is also bad news in the South Bay area with another swing club being harassed out of business but vicious neighbors and the city. See http://www.metroactive.com/papers/metro/02.27.03/swingers-0309.html
1998 Law Made Swing Clubs
Illegal - Clubs ignore
In 1998 the City of Phoenix passed a law with almost no support at public hearings other than from a Christian anti-sex group that made swing clubs illegal in Phoenix. The 2002 bust was an enforcement action based on the 1998 law which is probably unconstitutional banning swing clubs. One case is currently on Appeal to the 9th Circuit Appellate Court. For background information on the law and the controversy in 1998-1999 surrounding it see A Sad Day for Adult Rights in Phoenix All but one club remained open and vowed to fight the new law. The law makes it illegal to OWN, not to be in a swing club so only the owners are at legal risk. The rest of this page is about the September 2002 unlawful warrantless searches and raids on the swing clubs
Attacks on Your Sexual Freedom Is Spreading Across America!
60 Cops illegally Bust Phoenix Swing Clubs
How Can You Help?
Phoenix Officials Contact List
We urge you to contact these officials and let your opinions be known
Link To Club Chameleon Page
10/18/02 National Association of Swing Clubs Supports Phoenix Fight
10/8/02 Guys & Dolls News Bulletin
9/29/02 Another Great Az
Phoenix 'Sex Cops' bestow no mercy on privacy
9/28/02 National Coalition for Sexual Freedom Action Alert
9/28/02 Great Az Republic Story: Phoenix sex clubs fight back
9/28/02 How the 5th Club Avoided the Raid
Consenting Adult Sexual Freedom
The Center for Arizona Policy "Promoting Family, Faith & Freedom"
The Religious Right Group behind the 1998 Law Outlawing Swing Clubs
9/27/02 The lies and Spin from Mayor of Phoenix - My reply
9/27/02 $15 million Notice of Claim Against the City Of Phoenix - Full Text
9/27/02 Press Conference at Club Chameleon
It was great. All the major news organizations seemed to be there including
about six TV crews. A Chan 12 reporter was especially friendly it seemed asking
Nicholas Hentoff, their attorney was outstanding presenting a well written Notice to City of $15 million claim against the city. The Notice will hopefully be available on the CC website soon and I will also have it on www.libchrist.com as soon as I can.
What is most important and in favor of the Club in my view, is not just the Constitutional issues, but how the illegally enforced the law, both by its warrantless entry into a private club (30 cops many in riot gear with "gang" jersey's), but also the selective prosecution. They busted into a private club. The riot police forced employees to open locked doors of the private rooms. Obviously there was nothing in public which would violate the Phoenix law.
And all this to "send a message" as the city has admitted for a crime that is a class 1 misdemeanor - the same as walking your dog in public without a dog license.
Most important issue however seems to be that the Phoenix law only applies to "PUBLIC" places. Clearly CC is not private and will be redoing its procedures and requirements to even be more private.
Even without the constitutional issues, it seems clear to me there was no violation of the 1998 Phoenix law and the bust was nothing more than a political show of anti-sex force by police "goons", that did an illegal bust.
Unfortunately this is a big news day with Bush in town to raise money for Mat Salmon who has said as governor he wants to bring God back to Arizona politics. I hope the news coverage of the press conference won't be cut due to the Bush events, or they will wait till tomorrow to run the swing club story.
Again, I was VERY favorable impressed by the attorney and the positions he has made clear in the Notice of Claim for $15million against the city as well as the presentation of Milo and the press conference.
Someone took a great deal of time to cover all the "dirty" pictures! New people asked if they could look around and they were welcome to.
Only problem is gee..club is hard to find since can't turn off of Grand following map on website. I was lost for awhile but obviously found my way.
Great job to Milo, Nancy and their attorney Nick Hentoff. I enjoyed meeting everyone
Dave in Phoenix http://www.libchrist.com
9/26/02 Guys & Dolls Closes until legal situation resolved. Phoenix wins against one club
9/26/02 A Club Chameleon Member says:
Fighting city hall is hard. Not impossible. I
for one am not giving up without a fight. Better to be bloodied and unbowed,
than to hunch my shoulders and slink away. Even if it is to go underground to
enjoy my lifestyle. Although I am not beyond enjoying a good hotel or home party
And I for one believe this is a Constitutional Issue involving the Right to Privacy. And while the current Supreme Court is not the Warren Court which first recognized this Constitutional Right, neither this Court or any of its predecessors since the Warren have overturned or undermined that Right. [Yes I am a lawyer in the real world. Just don't hold that against me.]
So until some respected appellate court, such as the 9th Circuit, tells me my Right to Privacy may be infringed upon by the do-gooders and Christian Right Conservatives, I shall stand up and shout. I will not go quietly. I will not go as sheep to slaughter. I will stand on my hind legs and fight.
Look at Police Actions in Swing Club Bust
Outstanding AZ Republic Article - Must be no crime in Phoenix since going after consenting adults
AZ Republic Article - Why avoided Gay clubs and just busted heterosexual swing clubs
AZ Republic Article - Sex club owners plan court appeal over raids
The wording of the Phoenix
Law passed in 1998 without almost no support at 5 public hearings
to bar swing clubs, calling them sex act business's
Phoenix Officials Contact List
We urge you to contact these officials and let your opinions be known
Link To Club Chameleon Page
9/22/02 60 cops Bust Phoenix Swing Clubs
With all the media coverage probably everyone in Phoenix
knows about the swing club busts. The police didn't bother any customers but
found the owners/manages who were arrested and taken to Madison Street Jail.
They were out on bail the next day but as Milo said, it is a terrible place to
be even if just overnight. The only club not busted was Sociables because it was
closed when the bust team arrived. It is suspected they were tipped off about
the raid as a Channel 12 news person is an active member of the club according
to disucssion board posts.
Most if not all of the other clubs remained open after the bust and were open again the next night (Sat). But some folks were intimidated by all the TV vans parked across the street.
Phoenix officials have been promising to enforce the 1998 law outlawing swing clubs ever since 1999 when a Federal Court refused to issue a restraining order against the City to stop enforcement. I am surprised they waited this long to enforce the 1998 law.
Again part of the problems in the restraining order case was there was no first amendment issue since no one had been arrested so no one could claim the law violated their rights as I understand it. The City may have wanted to delay enforcement to get their act together to fight the first amenedment issue they know would be coming as soon as they enforced it.
I guess the City now wants to take on the battle. I suspect they may also be having pressure from COMMUNITY DEFENSE COUNCIL" Protecting Children and their Neighborhoods". http://www.communitydefense.org/ They are helping other cities adopt the same laws as Phoenix.
These bible thumper moralists who influence laws and enforcement keep awake at night at the thought that somewhere, someone is watching an erotic movie; some unmarried couple is enjoying great sex, or having a immoral interaction with a young dancer who enjoys lap dances with customers. Or, couples are enjoying swing clubs, based on honestly with other loving couples.
And instead of being seen as the intolerant, eccentric cranks they are, the moralists are taken seriously by many politicians seeking an easy issue to look good fighting crime (healthy sex) and somehow in some twisted way argue they are "saving neighborhoods and children."
These thoughts, by moralists, that others without their repressive beliefs are enjoying consenting sexual freedoms, is just too much to handle. They put a huge amount of money and energy into organizing phone banks, creating organizations to fight consenting adult freedoms and do everything to be sure ancient sexual repressive laws are enforced.
Except of course when they get arrested or caught for being human having needs instead of as godly as the image they try and preach. Their moralist rants often are the result of their own insecurity or guilt in doing what they speak so loudly against.
Phoenix is becoming one of the national focal points in the fight against the Bush/Ashcroft attack on sexual freedoms. Those who know what is best for you, the strong Christian groups see this administration as a great time to get rid of us "perverts", as Justice Dept officials refer to us as. Very well financed the Christian groups are pulling out all the political stops to take advantage of the current Bush administrations anti-sex crusade in a broad range of "what is best for us" morality issues. In the meeting the success of fighting the legal issues regarding sexual rights may be as important as the landmark "Miranda" law in protecting civil rights
I have a huge amount of detail on the 1998-1999 law passing that outlawed swing clubs and drastically changed strip club rules at http://www.libchrist.com/swing/finalaction.html
Letter to the Editor
So far no letters on swing club issue have been published. Possibly because the AZ Republic is conservative and for anti-sex laws as it was in its editorials when the laws passed in 1998..
The Arizona Republic (the hardest part was the 200 word limit!)
Adult Club Morality Attack.
Many of your neighbors, the couple next to you in the church pew, and a rapidly growing number of other couples are enjoying safe, consensual adult sexual freedom in adult social clubs.
Yet a powerful group of religious conservatives imposed by law their morality on other less sexually repressed citizens of Phoenix, wasting money and police resources going after victimless morality crimes. In five public hearings almost everyone except a few representing the religious right opposed the new law.
There clearly is no public health issue. STD aware swinging couples have less health risk that most any liberal social group. There has never been a case of HIV related to swinging. The morality issue is based on Christian traditions that have no biblical basis.
Millions of Christians and others enjoy consenting, safe, sexual freedom of expression and socializing in adult clubs around the world. It is immoral that the city of Phoenix backed by religious zealots deprive its adult citizens the freedom to enjoy themselves in private clubs with like minded consenting adults.
Dave in Phoenix (real name used in original as required)
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