DRCNet/Perry Fund Event to Feature Rep. John Conyers and Kemba Smith, March 9 in Washington, DC 3/4/05

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http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/377/march9.shtml

DRCNet (Drug Reform Coordination Network) Foundation invites you to the second event in a national campaign benefiting:

The John W. Perry Fund
Scholarships for Students Denied Federal Financial Aid Because of Drug Convictions
Memorializing a Hero of 9/11 and Champion of Civil Liberties

featuring keynote addresses by:

REP. JOHN CONYERS
KEMBA SMITH

and supporting remarks by:

Arnold Trebach (emcee); Hilary Shelton, NAACP; Nkechi Taifa, OSI; Patricia Perry (invited); Larry Zaglaniczny, National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators; Scarlett Swerdlow, Students for Sensible Drug Policy; David Borden, DRCNet; others to be announced.

Wednesday, March 9, 6:00-8:00pm
The George Washington University Club, 1918 F Street, NW
Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, DC

DONATIONS REQUESTED
RSVP to
[email protected] or (202) 362-0030
Light refreshments will be served.

Host Committee: Paola Barahona, Adam Eidinger, Rob Kampia, Matthew Lesko, Kris Lotlikar, Bill McColl, Matt Mercurio, Bill Piper, Gary & Tanya Reams, H. Alexander Robinson, Eric Sterling, Keith Stroup, Scarlett Swerdlow, Arnold Trebach, Kevin Zeese, John Zwerling, others to be announced

John Conyers is United States Representative for Michigan’s 14th Congressional District. Elected to Congress in 1964, Mr. Conyers is the House of Representative’s second most senior member. He is the senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, and is the only committee member to serve on both the Watergate Committee and the more recent impeachment committee. He is one of the 13 founding members of the Congressional Black Caucus, and is considered the Dean of that organization. Rep. Conyers is the principal author of the "End Racial Profiling Act," legislation to ensure that the rights of all Americans are protected by banning racial profiling nationwide and requiring all federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to take administrative steps to eliminate the practice. He was a leading sponsor of asset forfeiture reform legislation passed by Congress in 1999, and is a vigorous supporter of drug policy reforms including sentencing, medical marijuana and other issues.

At age 24, Kemba Smith was sentenced to 24.5 years in prison for "conspiracy," an ill-defined legal concept that federal prosecutors used to tie her to the crimes of her deceased, abusive boyfriend, a ringleader in a $4 million cocaine ring. After being featured on the cover of Emerge magazine, her case drew broad support from around the nation, and her sentence was commuted in December 2000 by President Clinton. Kemba is a graduate of Virginia Union University with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work, and is a Soros Justice Fellow. She is a frequent speaker for audiences around the country, on topics such as domestic violence; challenges facing youth; reentry of ex-offenders into society; injustices in the criminal justice system; the social, economic and political consequences of current drug policies; and other issues. Kemba’s story has been featured on numerous outlets including Nightline, Court TV and The Early Morning Show, and in publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Glamour, People and Essence.

John W. Perry
About John Perry: John William Perry was a New York City police officer and Libertarian Party and ACLU activist who spoke out against the "war on drugs." He was also a lawyer, athlete, actor, linguist and humanitarian. On the morning of September 11, 2001, John Perry was at One Police Plaza in lower Manhattan filing retirement papers when the first plane hit the World Trade Center. Without hesitation he went to help, losing his life rescuing others. We decided to dedicate this scholarship program, which addresses a drug war injustice, to his memory. John Perry's academic achievements are an inspiring example for students: He was fluent in several languages, graduated from NYU Law School and prosecuted NYPD misconduct cases for the department.

Please join us on March 9 in Washington to thank Rep. Conyers and Kemba Smith for their important work on this issue while raising money to help students stay in school! If you can't make it, you can also help by making a generous contribution to the DRCNet Foundation for the John W. Perry Fund. Checks should be made payable to DRCNet Foundation, with "scholarship fund" or "John W. Perry Fund" written in the memo or accompanying letter, and sent to: DRCNet Foundation, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036. DRCNet Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity, and your contribution will be tax-deductible as provided by law. Please let us know if we may include your name in the list of contributors accompanying future publicity efforts.

Visit DRCNet for more information on our work, and contact the Coalition for Higher Education Act Reform or Students for Sensible Drug Policy to get involved in the campaign to repeal the Higher Education Act's drug provision. Contact the Perry Fund at [email protected] or (202) 362-0030 to request a scholarship application or with other inquiries.

Sincerely,

David Borden
Executive Director

-- END --
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Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of the DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

Issue #377 -- 3/4/05

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

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The Ignorance and the Damage Done | International Harm Reduction Battle Heating Up | National Drug Control Strategy Taking Lumps from All Sides | Under New South Dakota Anti-Meth Law, Drug Use Equals Child Abuse | DRCNet Needs You to Write the Senate | DRCNet/Perry Fund Event to Feature Rep. John Conyers and Kemba Smith, March 9 in Washington, DC | Coasters to Stop the Drug War | Events and Conferences Coming Up for Drug Reformers -- Come Out and Be a Part of It | Newsbrief: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories | Newsbrief: Four Canadian Mounties Killed Raiding Marijuana Grow | Newsbrief: Legalize It, Says Business Week Columnist | Newsbrief: Washington State Drug Reform Coalition Launches Campaign | Newsbrief: Texas Racial Profiling Study Finds No Progress, Calls for Ban on Consent Searches | Newsbrief: Arkansas Bill That Would Have Cut Methamphetamine Sentences Defeated | Newsbrief: Utah Treatment Not Jail Bill Dying For Lack of Funding | Newsbrief: Colombia Guerrillas Demand Return of Commander Extradited to US | Newsbrief: British Opposition Promises Tough New Drug War if Elected | Newsbrief: As British Parties Embrace Student Drug Testing, Research Report Flashes Caution Light | Newsbrief: "The Marijuana-Logues" Tour Cancelled After Parole Officer Forces Tommy Chong to Quit | A Drug War Carol Now Available in Spanish and French | This Week in History | The Reformer's Calendar

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