OAKLAND — Citing press freedom, a court has ruled that the City of Alameda's zoning law restricting newsstand sale of the Spectator and other sexually explicit publications is unconstitutional.
"The ordinance clearly is unconstitutional on its face with an abridgement of freedom of the press," said Alameda County Superior Court Judge Joseph Karesh on Friday. "If you do this to the Spectator, you can do it to other publications someone might not approve of."
The show-all Spectator is distributed in Alameda at two racks on main streets and in front of City Hall. The city had not enforced its law pending the outcome of the court case. The ruling was greeted with jubilation by Spectator executives.
"It's such a relief to have your opinion stated so clearly by a judge," said Kat Sunlove, the Spectator's acting president. "It sets us up to continue the fight for our newspaper and wherever censorship of adult material takes place."
After the defeat, Alameda Mayor Chuck Corica vowed that the city will appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary.