TEW is a weekly Podcast show to hear Club Dj Mixes from around the world! TEW covers every genre of dance music by bringing bedroom to international DJ mixes from around the world for you to enjoy! Be sure to visit http://myspace.com/djscy1 TEW Host DJ Scy will blog about Electronic Dance Music news from around the world!



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Monday, August 25, 2008


The War on Drugs has often been used to suppress music and lifestyles disliked by the political establishment. Local, state, and federal drug laws give the government enormous power and this power has been used to exert control over emerging subcultures. Jazz in the 1940s. Rock and roll in the 1960s. Heavy metal and rap in the 1980s. Electronic music and Hip Hop today.
The RAVE Act which threatens to squash live music and free speech was passed in 2003 when it was tacked onto an unrelated child protection bill. In 2004 there were two additional pieces of legislation considered - the CLEAN-UP Act and the Ecstasy Awareness Act - that threatened to widen the laws to prosecute anyone who holds an event and fails to prevent illicit drug use.
Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) forced the controversial legislation commonly known as the "RAVE" Act through both houses of Congress as an attachment to an unrelated child abduction bill. The "RAVE" Act, also referred to as the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act of 2003, was introduced as an addition to the Child Abduction Protect Act of 2003, widely recognized as the AMBER Alert bill (S151). The "RAVE" Act had not passed a single committee before being attached to the AMBER Alert bill. In addition, it was so controversial when it was introduced during the 107th Congress that two Senators withdrew their sponsorship.

The "RAVE" Act makes it easier for the federal government to prosecute innocent business owners for the drug offenses of their customers - even if they take steps to stop such activity. This is a threat to 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 third parties - real or alleged - regardless of whether or not the promoter and/or property owner made a good-faith effort to keep their event drug-free. It applies not only to electronic music parties, but any type of public gathering: theatrical productions, rock concerts, DJ nights at your local club or tavern, and political rallies. Moreover, 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.

The "RAVE" Act was passed despite the fact it did not have a public hearing, debate or vote in Congress. It is important to note that because of overwhelming opposition to the "RAVE" Act, legislators were forced to remove some of the most egregious language before it passed.

For example, the word "rave" was removed from the version of the bill attached to the AMBER Alert. 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 due in large part to activists who sent nearly 30,000 faxes in 2003 alone to their Senators urging them not to support the dangerous legislation.

When it was first introduced there was widespread belief that the "RAVE" Act would move through the legislative channels quickly with no revision. Instead, it took 10 months, a change of power in the United States Senate, backroom policymaking, and substantial changes to the bill before it was passed - and even then it did not pass via "normal" legislative procedures.
The "RAVE" Act gives the government even more power to harass and arrest innocent musicians, promoters, venue owners, and fans - all in the name of the War on Drugs.

Law enforcement agencies already target certain types of musical and cultural events and the nightclubs that host them. The Drug Enforcement Administration is prosecuting nightclub owners and promoters that organize electronic dance music events and the military is using drugs as a pretext to close down gay nightclubs. In Michigan in March 2005, a nightclub was raided with some attendees reportedly being strip-searched and over 100 people being ticketed and slapped with a misdemeanor charge, just for being in proximity to people using drugs.

A similar incident happened in 2002 in Wisconsin. In addition, drug laws are often enforced unevenly against African Americans and Latinos. Hip-Hop could easily become a target.
Opposition to the "RAVE" Act remains strong - over 3,000 of you spoke out after the arrests in Michigan. In July 2005 the Alliance submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to the Department of Justice for information on how the RAVE Act is being used, in order to determine whether it is being abused by prosecutors. The Drug Policy Alliance and its coalition of partners will continue to work to protect property owners, prevent further criminalization of dance and music events, mobilize opposition, and advocate amending this dangerous law.

Donate to Drug Policy Alliance's fight to help overturn this bad legislation.
Learn more about what you can do to help fight the RAVE Act