As some of you know, in addition to my civil rights advocacy, I’m a music fanatic, and I create and perform electronic music, as well as seek out the best music events across the world. The Electric Daisy Carnival music festival, held annually in Las Vegas, NV, has been one of my favorites because of the massive attention paid to creating an experience, rather than just a set of stages.
So it was much to my disappointment this year to read that EDC producer Insomniac has decided that it will not only search every attendee entering the venue with a self-described “TSA-style search,” but it will prohibit all over-the-counter medicine and require festival-goers to “explain” their prescription medication.
Music events since Woodstock have had drug usage, and I appreciate that Insomniac feels an obligation to minimize unlawful drug usage at its events. However, this policy, beyond being invasive, is downright dangerous. Many people need over-the-counter drugs to avoid serious medical issues. Consider, for example, the person with allergies who carries Benadryl (diphenhydramine) to counter a reaction. With the 18+ crowd that EDC attracts, will a teen with an allergy decide to leave his medication behind so he can go party, risking, well, death?
It’s also downright discriminatory. No one should have to “explain” their HIV meds, schizophrenia drugs, or Irritable Bowel Syndrome in order to enter a place of public accommodation. And unfortunately, Insomniac isn’t the only one to do it. I’ve personally seen many nightclubs in America refuse entry to people with lawful medicine. However, Insomniac is the first I’ve seen so blatantly publish such a policy for such a massive event. As such, today I filed suit against Insomniac and the owner of the Las Vegas Motor Speedway where EDC takes place, alleging discrimination as prohibited by the Americans with Disabilities Act and related state laws.
The case is Corbett v. Insomniac, 16-CV-3604, filed in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, where Insomniac is headquartered.
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