SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- A huge celebration took over the streets of Downtown San Jose to remember the one year anniversary of the city's no cruising ban being lifted back in September of 2022.
The activity that was once illegal was proudly on display outside of San Jose's City Hall.
"This is what we needed, they finally recognize us being good people, hardworking people, who just love cars," said Robert Guitierrez with the New Style Car Club.
The decades old prohibition --- was called 'blatantly racist' by critics who felt it gave police officers the power to unfairly target people of color, because of their culture.
"By overruling the ban that was instated decades ago, we sent a message to the entire state and to the entire country that we can no longer demonize certain activities based on who participates in them," said Peter Ortiz, city council member for District 5.
The celebration shut down a block of Santa Clara Street, cars of all years, makes, models and colors could be seen around every corner.
David Polanco is president of the United Lowrider Council of San Jose. He says the ban didn't stop the lowrider community from expanding its culture.
"This just didn't pop up in a year, this is generations and generations of people sharing this passion with their kids and growing and it's still thrived," Polanco said.
The city council voted unanimously last year to repeal it and though the city now has a new mayor and several new council members since then...many current leaders were on hand to show support, including Ortiz, District 5 councilmember Omar Torres and Mayor Matt Mahan.
"City Hall is everyone's city hall, so I'm excited to invite the low rider Council and the many owners of these beautiful cars to come on down," Mahan said.
Now that a year without the ban has passed, Polanco says a main focus is on passing similar legislation at the state level, Assembly Bill 436.
"September 7, the Senate will vote and if that gets passed, will go to the governor, and that will repeal the law, no cruising zones throughout the state of California, in one swoop instead of doing it individually," he said, "There's a little bit of a big lowrider wave coming through the state of California right now and politicians are paying attention and communities and nonprofits as well."
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