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8/18/2008 1:56:44 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Missouri--Action Still Needed to Stop Grain Valley Daytime Curfew

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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August 18, 2008

Missouri--Action Still Needed to Stop Grain Valley Daytime Curfew

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

Homeschoolers in Grain Valley have taken the first step toward
defeating the proposed daytime curfew ordinance under consideration by
the Grain Valley Board of Aldermen. Thanks to the families who
attended the meeting last week and spoke up, the Board of Aldermen
decided to table the proposed ordinance, instead of voting to pass it,
as many anticipated would happen. However, this measure is still under
consideration, and your action is still urgently needed to make sure
it is defeated.

The Board of Alderman meets tonight at 6 p.m. for a workshop, and the
daytime curfew ordinance is on the agenda. This will be a public
meeting, but the discussion will be limited to the Board. If at all
possible, you should attend this meeting in order to communicate your
objection to the proposal through your physical presence. The Board
needs to be reminded that the families of Grain Valley will not
tolerate such a broad attack on their fundamental rights.


ACTION REQUESTED

If you live in Grain Valley, please stand up for freedom by attending
the meeting tonight, August 18, and show by your presence that you
oppose the ordinance.

The meeting will be held at 6 p.m. in the Grain Valley City Hall at
711 Main St. Please contact other families and ask them to come to the
meeting, as well!

BACKGROUND:

1. Daytime curfews do not deter juvenile crime.

A recent California study compared the juvenile crime rates of
counties that enforced curfew ordinances and counties that did not.
The crime rates were the same. The curfews had no effect on juvenile
crime.

2. Daytime curfews allow searches without probable cause.

The Fourth Amendment forbids any investigation of a citizen without a
"probable cause." The proposed ordinance allows policemen to stop and
interrogate a person merely because he looks young enough to be
violating the curfew. It is an invitation to harass homeschool
families.

3. Daytime curfews assume a person is guilty until proven innocent.

In several incidents where homeschool students were stopped by police,
they had done nothing to arouse suspicion. There was no evidence they
had committed a crime or intended to. Nonetheless, the police
interrogated them and treated them like criminals until they had
proved their innocence.

4. The ordinance allows some exceptions. Unfortunately, the only way
for a policeman to determine if an exception applies is to stop and
interrogate the frightened young person. By then the damage has
already been done. The child may be afraid to go outdoors again. The
right to homeschool includes the right to be free from
fear--especially for young people, who are most vulnerable to feelings
of fear.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom.

Sincerely,

Scott A. Woodruff
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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