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TexasÂ? electronic music business community is poised to make their voice heard on the steps of the Capitol in Austin, Texas Saturday, October 26th in opposition to HR.5519 & S.2633, the Reducing American's Vulnerability to Ecstasy Act (the R.A.V.E. Act). The bills, if passed, unfairly punish business owners for the crimes of their patrons by making them criminally liable if they fail to prevent customers from using or selling drugs on their premises or at their events.

Venue owners, event promoters, and performance artists will be joining forces with the ACLU and the Libertarian Party, among others, to offer a voice of collective disapproval for the government’s overzealous attempts to penalize those that offer outlets of artistic creativity, social education, and economic stability to their communities.

If passed, the R.A.V.E. Act stands to force all musical events and celebrations of progressive art further underground, invisible to the scrutiny of public health and safety regulations. By discouraging business owners from taking responsible steps to protect their customers, the government is creating a breeding ground for that which it claims to want eradicated: the illegal use of narcotics and other drugs by patrons of performance art events.

HR.5519 & S.2633 are a danger to innocent business owners; none more so than restaurant and nightclub owners, concert promoters, and landlords. Section 3 of HR.5519 goes so far as to allow the federal government to charge property owners civilly, allowing prosecutors to fine property owners up to $250,000, essentially bankrupting economically viable citizens without having to meet the burden of proof required in the successful prosecution of criminal cases. Among those calling for a reconsideration of the language of the bills will be Feedback Magazine, the Drug Policy Alliance, and the Texas chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. Also in attendance will be DJ Phaedrus (Austin, Texas, Mistical Productions) and InitString (Fort Worth, Texas, http://www.initstring.org), who will be performing from two to five pm.

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Ashley Henderson
The Aumkara Group
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