420 Magazine Background




Drug Policy Alliance Stopped It Last Year, But It's Back This Year

Thanks to thousands of our supporters, the Drug Policy Alliance was able to stop federal legislation last year that would have essentially given federal prosecutors new powers to shut down raves, dance parties, hemp festivals, marijuana rallies and other events and punish business owners and activists that hosted or promoted them. Supporters of the draconian drug war bill are back this year with a vengeance. They have re-introduced it in a new form.

It's not called the RAVE Act. Nor does it have a findings section talking about raves or electronic music. It's now called the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act (S. 226). DON'T BE FOOLED! It's the RAVE Act in new clothing. If enacted, it would harm innocent business owners, undermine public safety, and stifle free speech and musical expression. These provisions are also part of S. 22, a domestic security bill sponsored by Senator Tom Daschle (D-SD).

Please fax your senators and tell them not to co-sponsor or support the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act.

The Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act, like the RAVE Act, would amend the federal "crack house law" to make it easier for federal prosecutors to fine and imprison business owners that fail to stop drug offenses from occurring. Businessmen and women could be prosecuted even if they were not involved in drugs - and even if they took steps to stop drug use on their property. Although proponents of the bill are seeking to target raves (and DJs, nightclub owners, and rave promoters have the most to fear), the law would apply to any business owner, including bar owners, motel owners, concert promoters, and cruise ship owners. Because of its broad language, the proposed law would even potentially subject people to twenty years in federal prison if one or more of their guests smoked marijuana at their party or barbecue.

Recognizing that the RAVE Act was a threat to free speech, public health, and innocent business owners, the Drug Policy Alliance launched a major campaign last year to stop it from becoming law.

In conjunction with Dance Safe, the Drug Policy Alliance launched a fax campaign that sent over 35,000 faxes to the Senate in opposition to the RAVE Act. Thousands of voters also called and wrote their Senators and urged them to vote against it.
The Drug Policy Alliance worked with groups around the country - like ROAR (Ravers Organized Against the RAVE Act), Blackkat, AuraSF and Freedom to Dance - to hold organized protests against the RAVE Act in major cities, including protests in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York and a rave on the lawn of Congress in Washington, DC.
We launched an aggressive legislative and media campaign that criticized the RAVE Act in the media and educated Members of Congress on the dangers of the bill. The campaign garnered national attention, with news articles across the country, including the Oakland Tribune and the Washington Post. Alliance staff warned voters about the RAVE Act and spurned them to action on radio stations from California to New York.
So successful was our campaign, two of the original RAVE Act co-sponsors dropped their support for the bill (including the Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee). The House Subcommittee on Crime refused to even vote on the House version of the bill. Senate leadership never dared to bring the controversial Senate version up for a full Senate vote.
Unfortunately, drug warriors in Congress are determined to enact their agenda, even if it undermines public health, stifles free speech, and punishes innocent business owners. They have stuffed RAVE Act provisions in a bill (S. 22) they know many Members of Congress will have to support. They've also introduced it under a new name, the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act (S. 226). We need your help:

Fax Your Senators and urge them to oppose S. 226.
Sign up to receive our action alerts and weekly e-newsletter if you are not receiving them already, so we can keep you updated on our RAVE Act and other campaigns.
Give us your contact information, and let us know if you are a DJ, musician, club owner, or promoter, so we can contact you with things you can do to help our campaign.

Join Drug Policy Alliance. The Drug Policy Alliance is your voice to politicians, the media, and your fellow citizens on important drug policy issues.

Provided by: www.nomoredrugwar.org
Top Bottom