by January Contreras, 2018 Democratic Candidate for AZ Attorney General
The Governor has imposed a curfew for the entire State beginning at 8 p.m. today. It will be in place for a week. I share more about this curfew below, please be informed, and do not be caught off guard.
Before explaining the curfew, I will share that this it is surprising and concerning for reasons including:
1) This statewide curfew is coming from a leader who very carefully and intentionally delayed statewide action in response to COVID-19, a crisis that has now caused the death of more than 900 Arizonans. We should question the inconsistency.
2) When armed protesters stormed the State Capitol to protest public health stay-at-home orders, there were no fences erected around the Capitol and there was no shooting of tear gas or rubber bullets. Now we have all of these measures being deployed. Again, we should question the inconsistency.
3) This statewide curfew comes as the White House is tweeting “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” and is threatening to “step in and do what has to be done” . . . “using the unlimited power of our Military and many arrests.” At a time when the person in the Oval Office is worried about his own re-election, we should all pay attention to his language and the actions of all who enable him, including our locally elected officials. We should not stand by silent when we see our rights and liberties threatened.
4) There must be a space for First Amendment protected speech and peaceful assembly. The tragedy that should not be lost is the killing of George Floyd and how urgently system change is needed to ensure that the life of Black men, women, and children are valued and protected. There are people protesting both passionately and peacefully with this focus, but there are others who appear to be taking advantage of this painful moment. A more thoughtful and effective approach is needed to prevent the actions of those who are damaging and stealing property, and to lift up the voices of those who have the constitutionally protected right to speak out peacefully with demands for equality that will make our country stronger.
That said, this curfew is now in effect. Please keep all of the above in mind, and also educate yourselves and others about it. Here’s what the curfew prohibits:
Between 8 PM and 5 AM, all persons are prohibited from being on a public street or in a public place. This applies to all travel including private vehicle, public transportation, and as a pedestrian. . . except for the following:
1) The curfew should not apply to first responders and credentialed members of the media, and
2) The curfew should not apply to people traveling to: get directly to and from work; get food; care for a person or animal; patronize or operate a business; seek medical care, or flee dangerous circumstances.
Let’s stay safe, be kind to one another, and work to keep our Constitution alive.