Dr. Benjamin Chavis To Lead Off Lectures Series On Drug Laws

Dr. Benjamin Chavis, CEO of the Hip-Hop Summit

Action Network (HSAN), will host a lecture series to raise awareness about the

Rockefeller Drug Laws in New York.

Chavis will lead off the lecture series at Albany

State University, titled "Spitting Truth in the Face of Injustice: Raising

Public Awareness About the Negative Impact of the Rockefeller Drug Laws on African

Americans and Latino Americans."

Albany, the state capitol of New York, was the

site of an intense battle between Russell Simmons, Chavis and the New York State

Commission on Lobbying.

The commission claims a rally the nonprofit hosted

was an attempt at lobbying the law and therefor illegal, because the proper

paper work was not filed to act as lobbyists.

HSAN filed a lawsuit against the commission on

the basis that the lobbying law is unconstitutional and that they were within

their constitutional rights.

On February 25th, 2004, the New York State Commission

on Lobbying voted to suspend the holding of any civil penalty hearings pending

the resolution of the lawsuit brought by the HipHop Summit Action Network.

"It is my personal belief that I and the

HipHop Summit Action Network were attacked because of political motivations

in an attempt to silence us and prevent us from continuing to address the real

issue of the injustice of the Rockefeller Drug Laws," HSAN Chairman Russell

Simmons said. "We will not relent, but will step up the pace of exposing

the devastating effects of the Rockefeller Drug Laws on our communities."

The lecture series is sponsored by The Black

Student Alliance of Albany State University and takes place at Albany State

University's Campus Center - Ballroom on March 3 at 10:00 AM.