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Friday, Apr. 11, 2003 at 8:22 AM
Late on Tuesday, April 8, 2003, a Senate and House Conference Committee, without a hearing, public notice or a debate in Congress, attached the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act (formerly known as the RAVE Act) to the Amber Alert Bill (a child abduction bill). This is "backdoor" policy-making at its worst and in no way upholds the democratic principles rooted in our legislative process.
The RAVE Act is an updated version of the 1980s-era "Crack House" act that gives law enforcement sweeping powers to raid, close down or prohibit public assemblies where drug use "may" be taking place, regardless of whether club owners or event organizers know of or even take steps to prevent drug use. (Anyone been to any music event, club, festival, or concert besides maybe Wayne Newton where this wouldn't be applicable??)
Law enforcement acting under provisions of this Act have already raided and shut down events at famous nightspots such as the Trocadero in San Francisco and Circus in LA. The language of this act makes it possible for drug enforcement officials to target ANY music venue or event as a "crack house" and sentence innocent club and venue owners for up to 20 years in prison and million in fines for providing even so much as free water or first-aid services.
It was effectively blocked in Congress committees last year but now it is back on the floor, snuck in as part of the unrelated Amber Alert homeland security bill. This Act is a dangerous threat to music & club culture in the US, and to our First Amendment rights to peaceful public assembly. Please write your representatives in Congress and tell them to oppose this draconian legislation that threatens our right to dance.
Take Action And Write Your Senators Here:
Background on the RAVE Act:
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