RAVE Act Passed!
Dear Members, Subscribers and Friends,
I do not normally use our alert channel to send a personal message.
However, I wanted to let you know that the Illicit Drug Anti-
Proliferation Act (also called the "RAVE Act"), which was attached to
the AMBER Alert bill, passed both the House and Senate late yesterday
The RAVE Act threatens free speech and musical expression while
placing at risk any hotel/motel owner, concert promoter, event
organizer, nightclub owner or arena/stadium owner for the drug
violations of 3rd parties - real or alleged - even if the event
promoter and/or property owner made a good-faith effort to keep their
event drug-free. It applies not just to electronic-music parties,
but to any type of public gathering, including theatrical
productions, rock concerts, DJ nights at local bars, and potentially
even political rallies. It gives heightened powers and discretion to
prosecutors, who may use it to target events they personally don't
like - such as Hip-Hop events and gay and lesbian fundraisers.
Sadly, the RAVE Act was added to the AMBER Alert bill conference
report at the very last minute by Senator Biden (D-DE), its original
sponsor. The AMBER Alert bill creates a system for responding to
child abduction. It has nothing to do with drug policy. The RAVE
Act had not passed even a single committee in the House or Senate
this year. One senator's pet issue made a mockery of the Democratic
process - becoming law without any public hearing or opportunity for
You should be aware that your letters and faxes clearly had an
effect. (FYI - you sent Congress 13,000 faxes this week alone!!)
For example, the word "rave" was removed from the version of the bill
that passed. Eliminating such blatant discrimination is a victory
for our continued freedom of speech. Also, the original bill
suggested that prosecutors should view the sale of water and the
presence of glowsticks or massage oil as evidence of drug use. These
ludicrous "findings" were completely removed thanks to you.
President Bush will sign this child abduction bill, which means the
RAVE Act will become law as well. We will be working with the
legislators who opposed this provision - such as Senators Durbin,
Kennedy and Leahy and Representatives Conyers and Scott - for its
repeal. In the meantime, however, it is up to all of us to be the
watchdogs of its enforcement.
Attorney General John Ashcroft will have to make decisions about its
enforcement priority among the many public safety issues the
Department of Justice handles. He must be held responsible when he
implements this scheme. We want him to know that he is not free to
shut down our dance clubs, our festivals and our freedoms. We will
be watching the activities of law enforcement and prosecutors, and we
will act when our rights are violated. You can help us by faxing
Attorney General Ashcroft here.
We thank our many partners in this effort for your hard work: EMEF,
ROAR, Buzzlife Productions, Davey D., electronic dance and music
organizations throughout the U.S., club owners, hotel organizations,
beverage and licensing groups, the ACLU and many, many others. But
most of all, I want to say thank you personally to our members and
You truly deserve credit for reacting so quickly and so forcefully.
It has really been amazing. When Bill McColl, our Director of
National Affairs, told me about this issue last June he said that he
thought the RAVE Act would pass in about 2 weeks. You proved us
wrong. It took 10 months, a change in control of the Senate,
backroom maneuverings and substantial changes to the bill. I'm
proud of the hard work of our members, friends and our coalition.
Rest assured we will continue to work together to mobilize opposition
and advocate to fix this dangerous law.
Drug Policy Alliance
Is there any possibility of court action? I know you can just tack on riders in the US, as in this case, but is it possible to tack the govt. to the supreme court and get a rider repealed?
I hope you can get this law struck off, or prove it unworkable.
Yeah, this is just unfuckingbelieveable. Since it never went through committee, it never went through the judiciary committee, which means if the ACLU feels like challenging, I think this one will fall pretty quickly. That doesn't make it suck any less while it's still on the books!
Love it, or leave it.
Exactly why do I stay in this country?
So apparently I'm at opposition with my governments actions in.
And, as a person who disagrees with everything, I'm now threatened with a McCarthy-like set of Patriot act laws that are going to get voted in for a non-specific period of time. The lines that define "terrorist" as proposed by several states are blurring to include what I consider protestors such as myself.
Unless there's a real change in the upcoming election, I'm afraid I might be migrating to an NTSC country (gotta save that investment in gear).
Re: Love it, or leave it.
seriously though, I am almost ready to bolt somewhere out of this country, the qualifier being if/when the US takes action on both Syria, and Iran...(and if the Rave Act actually, somehow, gets made into law)
"The Pixy-Light which led people from the path was exactly like that of the Will O' The Wisp."
"Ambition is the last refuge of the failure." Oscar Wilde
well you guys ought to consider moving up to canada; the rents (especially in Montreal) are amazingly cheap, the local scenes are pretty good (maybe not like psychedellic sceneries in amsterdam, but pretty awesome), not to say that you smoke weed, but if you did the quality is better and much cheaper.... and the government has recently taken to funding vjDVDs
seriously consider moving up here.... there's always room for more VJS!!!!!!
uh, the only problem is that the psytrance/goa parties have to be super small (no real problem) or out in the woods in order to happen freeely. otherwise it's big-box after hours clubs where the cops let the bikers do their *business* you get to play, but the vibe is a little um, compromised....
still, beats the crap out of anti-rave laws and that W guy....