Anti-RAVE ACT sign now

Wednesday, July 31, 2002
Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas
James Foster II,
Electronic Music Action Group
Dallas Tx, 75081

Dear Members of the United States congress,

We, the undersigned, are writing about the S. 2633, the Reducing American's Vulnerability to Ecstasy Act (also known as the RAVE Act). The ACLU as well as many hard working business owners and citizens of this community are challenging this bill, stating that it is an apparent violation of our first amendment constitutional rights. While Americans are not granted the right to sell drugs, we are granted the right to free speech, right to assembly, and right to expression. This includes music, dancing, and gathering in small groups to listen to music. The passing of this bill would allow the federal government to fine or imprison businessmen and women if they fail to stop their customers from using or selling drugs on their premises or at their events. The RAVE Act unfairly punishes business owners for the crimes of their customers and is unprecedented in U.S. history. The federal government can't even keep drugs out of its own prisons and public schools, yet this law fines business owners hundreds of thousands of dollars for failing to keep people from carrying drugs onto their premises. One begins to question the motives behind a bill of this nature, and this community of people will not stand nor tolerate this bill becoming law.

S. 2633 is a danger to members of a young community, and to businessmen and women in every major city in the USA (especially restaurant and nightclub owners, concert promoters, landlords, and real estate managers). Section 4 of the bill goes so far as to allow the federal government to charge property owners civilly, thus allowing prosecutors to fine property owners $250,000 (and put them out of business) without having to meet the higher standard of proof in criminal cases that is needed to protect innocent people.

Health advocates worry that the bill will endanger our nation's youth. If enacted, licensed and law-abiding business owners may stop hosting raves and other musical events, out of fear of massive fines and prison sentences. Thus, the RAVE Act will drive raves and other musical events further underground and away from public health and safety regulations. It would also discourage business owners from enacting important measures to protect their customers. By insinuating that selling bottled water and offering "cool off" rooms is proof that owners and promoters know drug use is occurring at their events, this bill may make business owners too afraid to implement such harm-reduction measures, and the safety of our kids will suffer. We all in Dallas/Ft.Worth assert that approaching this issue from a cooperative, harm-reduction standpoint would be more effective than going to war with an entire sub-culture.

In short, this bill is too controversial and too broadly written to be passed without havy conflict and dangerous situations resulting. We urge you to do everything possible to stop it from becoming law.

Sincerely, the undersigned,

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