Anorak News | Lowell Kuvin Of Coral Gables: Lawyers Fight America’s Totalitarian Regime

Lowell Kuvin Of Coral Gables: Lawyers Fight America’s Totalitarian Regime

by | 31st, August 2007

cs74visit-coral-gables-florida-posters.jpgDEPITE its dynamism and energy, New York has a bit of an image problem when it comes to letting off steam.

There’s very little you can do in the city without breaking a law, as Christopher Hitchens noted in his 2003 Vanity Fair article “I Fought The Law”. Feeding the birds in Central Park? Despicable. Sitting on an upturned milk crate? Disgusting. Riding a bike without both feet on the pedals? Diabolical.

But Coral Gables, Florida, where pet snakes are banned and every house must be painted a certain color, makes New York look like a liberal utopia.

At least for now, because one former Coral Gables resident is challenging the status quo.

Lowell Kuvin, 44, is suing Coral Gables after being fined for breaking one of the city’s many rules: parking his green Ford pickup truck in front of his home.

The Coral Gables law states that all trucks, trailers and commercial vehicles must be parked in a garage at night.

But Mr Kuvin, who has since moved to Miami Beach, argues that since the home he rented in Coral Gables had no garage, he had no choice where to park, unless he sold the car or parked it outside the city each night.

“I have a problem with a city that has a very closed mind and narrow idea about how it should be run,” Kuvin told the New York Times. “This is one of the most culturally diverse areas in the entire United States, and yet Coral Gables is telling certain people they can’t act out their cultural values.”

Striking down the law last week, the Third District Court of Appeals agreed. Judge Alan Schwartz wrote: “Perhaps Coral Gables can require that all its houses be made of ticky-tacky and that they all look just the same but it cannot mandate that its people are, or do. Our nation and way of life are based on a treasured diversity, but Coral Gables punishes it.”

But the good burghers of Coral Gables are not giving up. They have vowed to fight on and to spend up to $20,000 defending their right to ban pick-up trucks.

Mayor Don Slesnick warned that if the city allowed pick-up trucks there was no telling which other aesthetic guidelines for the city could be challenged.

Meanwhile, Kuvin told the New York Times that he has been contacted by a number of Coral Gable residents who are eager to challenge other city laws.

“I think it’s an area ripe for a lawyer who’s willing to take on cases that seem unwinnable and stand up for Joe Homeowner,” he said.

Posted: 31st, August 2007 | In: Reviews Comments (7) | TrackBack | Permalink