Two teens died after attending Hard Summer at the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona in August. It’s not yet known if drugs were a factor in their deaths. Toxicology reports are pending and should take a few weeks to find out the results. Since then, festivals have been scrutinized in the media.

A member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has called for a ban on festivals at venues owned by LA County because of the recent deaths. Insomniac founder and CEO, Pasquale Rotella responded to the criticism of dance culture today on Instagram.

Take a look at what he had to say and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

-Jared

I’ve been incredibly saddened by yet another loss of life that’s been attributed to our culture, and I have spent the last week reflecting on how the story has played out in the media. First and foremost, my heart goes out to the friends and family of those two young women. We don’t condone or tolerate drug use, but the problem here isn’t raves or dance music, or even festivals in general. The health impact of drug abuse in our country extends far beyond what happens at our events. I lost five friends to drug overdoses at a young age, none of which occurred at dance music festivals; most of them weren’t even fans of the genre. No one wrote about them. Dance culture has survived for decades and has never been more popular. Banning these events at facilities where we are able to provide first-rate medical care and emergency services is not the answer. I hope that policymakers and the media do not turn their backs on a cultural movement that is thriving and brings so much happiness to a generation that, quite frankly, needs an environment where they can feel loved and accepted. Most just want healthy interaction with their peers. I know that if I didn’t have access to this community growing up, my life would have taken a much different turn. I see nothing but great opportunity within large gatherings; opportunity to promote health, happiness, individuality, and human connection. If we’re trying to create a safe and secure environment for these passionate fans, sending them back into the unregulated underground isn’t a step in the right direction. We all need to do our part in creating a national dialogue that educates our youth and encourages them to be accountable for their choices—especially when it comes to drugs.✌🏻️💗🌎🙏 #ThoseWhoCriticizeOurGenerationForgetWhoRaisedIt #tagorrepostifyoufeelme

A photo posted by Pasquale Rotella ✌ (@pasqualerotella) on