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June 13, 2003 11:21 AM   Subscribe

RAVE Act Passes Congress and Senate. Sensible control or a new reefer madness? Previously discussed here and here .
posted by squirrel (31 comments total)
And put this in your pipe and smoke it.
posted by mss at 11:27 AM on June 13, 2003

I don't even do drugs (ok, beer and smokes), but I guess, Canada, here I come!
posted by notsnot at 11:28 AM on June 13, 2003


Memories of a certain Get Your War On comic come to mind.
posted by Space Coyote at 11:29 AM on June 13, 2003

Lets see... indymedia link, has the word "draconian" in the title, and it devotes a sum total of one paragraph to describing the actual law.

I think I'll reserve judgement until I can find this on a somewhat less skewed news source.
posted by mragreeable at 11:38 AM on June 13, 2003

What is the legal foundation for holding club owners responsible for illegal acts of it's customers? Music leads to parties leads to consumption leads to pacifiers?

Is this like the 80's drug laws that would get your property seized if drugs were found to be used on the premises or in the vehicle?

First I heard of this bill. Sounds like a political statement. How can this hold up in court?
posted by xtian at 11:39 AM on June 13, 2003

For mragreeable, (irony noted) and others who want to go to the source.
posted by squirrel at 11:48 AM on June 13, 2003

Those "80's drug laws" are still alive and well from what I understand.
posted by zaack at 11:51 AM on June 13, 2003

How many Fleetwood Mac concerts, boarding school parties, or Libertarian Party mixers do you think the RAVE Act will be used to shut down? People use drugs in all of these contexts, but they are not salient threats to our nation because they do not offend the aesthetic sensibilities of the ruling class. This reminds me of--along with reminding me that the war on "terror" is indeed a war on dissent as well--of a a fantastic quote from, I believe, Ernest Hemingway: "The biggest enemy of creativity is good taste."

Now those tastes are legislated and politicized. And good taste is now arbitted by this man.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 11:54 AM on June 13, 2003

Petition to have the RAVE Act applied equally to federal institutions, so that prison wardens who's prisoners use drugs will be held responsible in the same way a club owner would be.
posted by Space Coyote at 12:00 PM on June 13, 2003

selective enforcement, here we come!
posted by dorian at 12:00 PM on June 13, 2003

A little more and a few more links to the Montana deal.
posted by mss at 12:05 PM on June 13, 2003

Ravers get on my fucking nerves. I say put them and their goofy-looking baggy pants, candy pacifiers, silly glow sticks, fruity dancing, and soulless music in jail where they belong especially the ones that listen to happy hardcore like my roommate.
posted by monkeyman at 12:11 PM on June 13, 2003

The text linked to by squirrel is no longer valid. That was S.2633 introduced in the 107th Congress. The text that was included in the Amber Alert law was S.226 from the 108th Congress, and may be found as the enrolled bill under S.151, the PROTECT Act, as Title VI, Sec. 608, the Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act. (The text changes to the US Code are identical, but the law as passed omits the "findings", which can affect court interpretations of the law.)
posted by dhartung at 12:13 PM on June 13, 2003

When I reference these "80's drug laws" I am also noting the hysteria that surrounded them. With the acceptance of medical use I think there is a much different climate. Some local governments have made distinctions between personal use and more serious issues of dealing/distribution (in the case of canabis).

Anyone remember the SF group that was going to raves to test drugs? What happened to that initiative? They were doing a great job of educating ravers about what they were putting in their bodies.
posted by xtian at 12:13 PM on June 13, 2003

xtian, if you're talking about DanceSafe, they're still very active.
posted by arielmeadow at 12:16 PM on June 13, 2003

British precedent. Introduced by the Tories not revoked by the pseudo-Tories unless I am much mistaken.
posted by squealy at 12:36 PM on June 13, 2003

so i guess every high school and college in the US can now be shut down. cool. damn liberals and their lust for education.

i guess a government just ain't a government these days unless it invades your wallet, your bedroom, and your night out.

and, yeah, everybody gets annoyed with Ravers. Sure. Thats why a truly draconian [sure it is] law got that handle. The Professional Who Smokes Weed at a Dave Matthews Band Concert Act doesn't really have any flair.
posted by th3ph17 at 12:49 PM on June 13, 2003

Not to be picky, but let's make sure we get our civics straight. Congress = House & Senate. Saying that this bill passed Congress and Senate isn't accurate. Either it should say that the bill passed Congress or it should say that the bill passed both houses of Congress or it should say that the bill passed both the House and the Senate. Not a big deal, but for the sake of clarity, it's worth pointing out.
posted by marcusb at 12:55 PM on June 13, 2003

Space Coyote, that's an excellent point. Note that many jails and prisons are contracted out to private companies, so presumably they already fall under this act.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:09 PM on June 13, 2003

Here's a direct link to the enrolled version of the RAVE Act. The link to section 608 is near the bottom of the page.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:15 PM on June 13, 2003

I think we can all see that the law, as threatened here, will be
struck down by the Supreme Court in a couple of years after it runs
through the lower courts. The problem is that it's very difficult to
determine if a promoter "knowingly" allows drug use at the event. I
did take one law class in college, and I don't claim to know anything
beyond this, but I do remember the words "arbitrary," and
"capricious." How does one go about proving that a promoter is
specifically allowing drug use at an event? The burden of proof is too much for prosecuters I bet. Maybe someone can ask Fred Thompson

Once again the actual legislation

"`(2) manage or control any place, whether permanently or temporarily,
either as an owner, lessee, agent, employee, occupant, or mortgagee,
and knowingly and intentionally rent, lease, profit from, or make
available for use, with or without compensation, the place for the
purpose of unlawfully manufacturing, storing, distributing, or using a
controlled substance.'."

The legislation adds this text to the offense list of the Controlled
Substances Act. The important piece is this:

"knowingly and intentionally rent... the place for the purpose of....
using a controlled substance"

The promotors of a marijuana activist rally were threatened by a DEA agent last week with fines stemming from this legislation.

Obviously the promoters were not knowingly providing the place for
the purpose of using marijuana, and all they would have to do is put
up signs saying "no pot smoking", and they should be alright. The
lawyers just didn't want to take on a potential supreme court
challenge case for the clients, so they wussed out.

Don't be scared by the law.
posted by joecacti at 1:31 PM on June 13, 2003

So there Brits: now we've got a Criminal Justice Bill too. Who wants the right to assemble anyway?
posted by yerfatma at 1:44 PM on June 13, 2003

Ravers get on my fucking nerves. I say put them and their goofy-looking baggy pants, candy pacifiers, silly glow sticks, fruity dancing, and soulless music in jail where they belong especially the ones that listen to happy hardcore like my roommate.

I'm sure you wouldn't like it if popular opinion turned against your culture of choice and got you thrown in jail. Freedom means nothing if you're not willing to defend the rights of people you disagree with.
posted by MarkO at 1:59 PM on June 13, 2003

joecacti, that's a temporary search results url (hence the "temp" in the url), so it doesn't work now
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:07 PM on June 13, 2003

Ravers get on my fucking nerves.

Me too, FWIW. You know who got on Joseph McCarthy's nerves? Fucking homo actors. He showed them.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 2:09 PM on June 13, 2003

You know, this isn't my country, but if you guys are going to end up copying all the stuff about the UK that annoyed me when I lived there, I might as well move back. At least the beer is better there ...
posted by thatwhichfalls at 2:17 PM on June 13, 2003

Uh, I think monkeyman's "I hate ravers comment" was tongue in cheek.
posted by squirrel at 2:18 PM on June 13, 2003

my bad.
posted by MarkO at 4:23 PM on June 13, 2003

>Don't be scared by the law.

Its already been used and its pretty damn scary.
Only two months after the RAVE Act was passed by Congress it has been used by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to intimidate the owners of a Billings, Montana, venue into canceling a combined benefit for the Montana chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) and Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP). One of the biggest reasons the Drug Policy Alliance waged a national campaign to stop the RAVE Act was that we feared it would be used to shut down political events like this.

On the day the fundraiser was set to take place a Billings-based DEA agent presented the venue owners with a copy of the RAVE Act warning them that they could face a fine of $250,000 if illicit drugs were found in the premises. The bands - most of which regularly played at the venue - were also approached and warned that their participation in the event could result in a fine.

Rather than risk the possibility of enormous fines, the venue decided to cancel the event. This blatant intimidation by the DEA was obviously designed to shut down the marijuana reform fundraiser. Unless the American people speak out against this attack on free speech, the DEA will be emboldened to use the law against other events they do not like, such as all-night dance parties, hip hop concerts, hemp festivals, and circuit parties.
posted by skallas at 6:50 PM on June 13, 2003

was not.
posted by monkeyman at 6:11 AM on June 16, 2003

What effect did the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act have on outdoor dance parties in Britian? Did they become impossible to hold anymore?
posted by dydecker at 8:24 AM on June 16, 2003

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