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Action Alert from Drug Policy Alliance

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  • Tom Uffner
    ... Date: Tue, 4 Mar 2003 09:40:24 -0800 (PST) From: Drug Policy Alliance To: tom@wact.net Subject: ACTION ALERT: Congress
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 4 11:19 AM
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      Date: Tue, 4 Mar 2003 09:40:24 -0800 (PST)
      From: Drug Policy Alliance <alerts@...>
      To: tom@...
      Subject: ACTION ALERT: Congress Seeks to Ban Live Music and Dancing

      ***CONGRESS SEEKS TO BAN LIVE MUSIC AND DANCING!!
      ***COULD HAPPEN THIS YEAR; WE NEED YOUR HELP

      Congress is considering two pieces of legislation that could
      effectively ban live music and dancing, while throwing innocent
      people like you in jail. If enacted, either bill could prevent you
      from hearing your favorite band or DJ live. Every musical style would
      be affected, including rock and roll, Hip Hop, country, and
      electronic music. Both bills would allow overzealous prosecutors to
      send innocent people to jail for the crimes of others. The two bills
      are the RAVE Act (H.R. 718) and the CLEAN-UP Act (H.R. 834). Both
      could be passed this year without your help. (Links to the Acts text
      provided below.)

      The RAVE Act would make it easier for the federal government to
      punish property owners for any drug offense that their customers
      commit - even if they work hard to stop such offenses. If enacted,
      nightclub and stadium owners would likely stop holding events - such
      as rock or Hip Hop concerts - in which even one person might use
      drugs. Similarly, the CLEAN-UP Act contains provisions that would
      make it a federal crime - punishable by up to nine years in prison -
      to promote "any rave, dance, music or other entertainment event" that
      might attract some attendees that would use or sell drugs. In both
      cases, it doesn't matter if the concert promoter and property owner
      try to prevent people from using drugs. Nor does it matter if the
      vast majority of people attending the event are law-abiding citizens
      that want to listen to music, not do drugs.

      If either the CLEAN-UP Act or the RAVE Act becomes law, Congress
      could effectively ban live music and dancing, as well as any other
      event that might attract someone that would use drugs (essentially
      any event that draws a large crowd). Your help is needed to stop
      these bills from becoming law!!! Dancing, singing, and playing music
      should not be a federal crime!

      ACTIONS TO TAKE

      *** Fax your Representative. Tell him or her to oppose the RAVE Act
      in its entirety and to oppose Section 305 in the CLEAN-UP Act. You
      can fax your Representative for free by going to
      http://actioncenter.drugpolicy.org/action/index.asp?step=2&item=1516.

      ** Please forward this action alert to your friends and family.
      Unless Congress hears from thousands of voters these two bills could
      easily become law.

      BACKGROUND

      The RAVE Act was first introduced last year in the Senate by Senator
      Joe Biden (D-DE). A House version was introduced by Rep. Lamar Smith
      (R-TX). Thanks to the support of thousands of voters like you, Drug
      Policy Alliance and a coalition of friends and activists around the
      country was able to stop both bills last year. Unfortunately,
      supporters of the RAVE Act are even more determined to pass it this
      year. Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC) is sponsoring a new RAVE Act in the
      House. Additionally, Senator Biden has introduced a Senate version
      entitled the Illicit Drugs Anti-Proliferation Act.

      If enacted, both the House RAVE Act and the Senate Anti-Proliferation
      Act would 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.

      For more information on the RAVE Act and Drug Policy Alliance's
      campaign to stop it, see:
      http://www.nomoredrugwar.org/music/rave_act.htm.

      A full text of the bill can be viewed at:
      http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?
      dbname=108_cong_bills&docid=f:h718ih.txt.pdf
      (Please cut and paste the entire URL into a browser window)

      The CLEAN-UP Act was also first introduced last year, but it failed
      to make it out of committee. This year's bill already has over 60 co-
      sponsors and could become law without your help. Sponsored by Rep.
      Doug Ose (R-CA), the Clean, Learn, Educate, Abolish, and Undermine
      Production (CLEAN-UP) of Methamphetamines Act is largely an innocuous
      bill that provides more money and training for the clean up of
      illegal methamphetamine laboratories. Hidden within the bill,
      however, is a draconian section that could make dancing and live
      music federal crimes.

      Section 305 of the CLEAN-UP Act stipulates that:

      'Whoever, for a commercial purpose, knowingly promotes any rave,
      dance, music, or other entertainment event, that takes place under
      circumstances where the promoter knows or reasonably ought to know
      that a controlled substance will be used or distributed in violation
      of Federal law or the law of the place where the event is held, shall
      be fined under title 18, United States Code, or imprisoned for not
      more than 9 years, or both.'

      Under the provision, any concert promoter, nightclub owner and arena
      or stadium owner could be fined and jailed, since a reasonable person
      would know some people use drugs at musical events. A full text of
      the bill can be viewed at:

      <http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?
      dbname=108_cong_bills&docid=f:h834ih.txt.pdf>

      Opponents of the bills fear that both proposed laws would be used by
      racist or homophobic prosecutors to target Hip Hop and R&B concerts
      and gay and lesbian nightclubs. Both bills would also eradicate
      electronic dance music and culture, as we know it.

      Fax your Representative. Tell him or her to oppose the RAVE Act in
      its entirety and to oppose Section 305 in the CLEAN-UP Act. You can
      fax your Representative for free by going to:
      http://actioncenter.drugpolicy.org/action/index.asp?step=2&item=1516.



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