How The Purple Hatter’s Ball Uses Music To Fight Against The War On Drugs

first_imgThis Friday marks the 45th anniversary of one of the most controversial and criticized crime-reduction policies in our nation’s history. On June 17, 1971 Richard Nixon’s administration published a special message from the President to the Congress on Drug Abuse Prevention and Control declaring drug abuse as “public enemy number one” in the U.S. The message included language about devoting more federal resources to this cause, in the hopes of “prevention of new addicts, and the rehabilitation of those who are addicted.” While that goal seemed to be born of the noble intentions, the resulting policy, widely known as the “War on Drugs,” has played out less as a strategy to protect people from the perils of substance abuse and more as a witch hunt, vilifying any connection to drugs and lumping minor offenders in with serious criminals. In addition to costing the U.S. roughly $51 billion annually to maintain, the War on Drugs leans heavily on the cooperation of confidential informants. Law enforcement recruits these informants by leveraging their own (often minor) drug offenses to compel them to cooperate. While acting as an informant is often portrayed to minor drug offenders as a path toward retribution and reduction of punishments, the glaring reality remains that these practices frequently thrust largely defenseless, unaware young offenders into dangerous circumstances. “Today’s drug war involves a countless number of confidential informants – many of which are young people who are busted for a small amount of drugs and then coerced into making much higher-level deals, putting them in very dangerous situations” says Derek Rosenfeld of the Drug Policy Alliance. The DPA, the leading organization in the U.S. working on alternatives to the Drug War, has spent years fighting for more sensible drug abuse prevention policies. As the DPA’s Tony Newman explains, “There are so many sick aspects of the failed drug war, but law enforcement forcing people with a drug arrest to choose between a draconian prison sentence or becoming an informant is one of the most nauseating.”Beginning with an “Action Day” pre-party today and running through Sunday, The Purple Hatter’s Ball at Spirit of Suwannee Music Park in Live Oak, FL this weekend aims to call attention to one such case—the tragic story of Rachel Morningstar Hoffman. After being arrested for possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, Hoffman, a 23-year-old FSU graduate, was compelled to participate in a large-scale buy-bust operation involving 1,500 ecstasy pills, 2 ounces of cocaine, a handgun, and $13,000 cash. The deal went south, and Hoffman was murdered in the process. In her memory, the Purple Hatter’s Ball seeks to increase awareness of ongoing miscarriages of justice under the umbrella of the War on Drugs, inspire reform to drug-related policies like the Confidential Informant Law, and inspire people to lead healthier, safer lives in the live music community and beyond.How One Mother Turned Tragedy Into Triumph: The Rachel Morningstar Hoffman StoryFor more information on Rachel Morningstar Hoffman and the Purple Hatter’s Ball, visit the festival’s website.last_img read more

Organisers Announce New Date for GOtv Boxing Night 19

first_img“GOtv Boxing Night has put Nigerian boxers in demand on the continent and it is our responsibility to ensure that boxers are in tip-top shape for local and international bouts, which is why we have moved the event by one week,” said the statement.GOtv Boxing Night 19 will hold at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium and feature nine bouts, including two all-female encounters.The biggest of the fights will see e international welterweight challenge duel between Rilwan “Babyface” Babatunde of Nigeria and Eden Biki of Ghana. The lightweight category will see African Boxing Union (ABU) lightweight champion, Oto “Joeboy” Joseph, take on Tope “Berinja” Agboola, while Hammed “Ese Hammed” Ganiyu will face West African Boxing Union (WABU) lightweight champion, Rilwan “Real One” Oladosu.The featherweight division will attract plenty of attention with the fight between national champion, Taiwo “Esepo” Agbaje, and former ABU champion, Waidi “Skoro” Usman.In another duel, the cracking Tope “TP Rock” Musa will be up against Kazeem “The Light” Oliwo. Others on the bill are Akeem “Sugar Boy” Olaiwola vs Waheed “Showmax” Shogbamu; Adeyemi “Spirit” Adekanla vs Isaac “I Star” Chukwudi, Adedeji Abiodun vs Cynthia Ogunsemilore and Rodiat Yusuf vs Rodiat Ibrahim in the female category.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Flykite Productions, organisers of GOtv Boxing Night, have announced 21 July as the new date for the 19th edition of the event, which was initially scheduled to hold on 14 July.In a statement issued in Lagos on Tuesday, the organisers said the event has been moved by one week to allow boxers additional preparation time, as some of those billed to fight at the event also have sub-regional title bouts for which they need to train well, as GOtv Boxing Night 19 is a tune-up platform for those soon-to-come fights.“Some of the boxers have been contacted for title bouts in the West African sub-region on soon-to-be announced dates and they need an extra week to adequately prepare and recover in addition to the preparation time in between GOtv Boxing Night 19 and their next fights.last_img read more