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Letters From Readers

We encourage letters from PLN readers. Words in brackets [like this] reflect material added by the editors in order to clarify a subject. Letters are edited for length. The names of writers will not be published unless specific authorization is given. We would like to see this section become a forum through which prisoners and family members can criticize, express ideas, and share information. Here are some letters recently received by newsletter workers:

Suggests Prisoner Information Network
I would like to see something somewhere in between or with local and legal news and some international and national connections. Perhaps some info on what it takes to organize a newsletter like PLN, so that other regions/states could develop their own information service and a clearing house for national and international news that could be shared and spread through local newsletters. This would be a way to build political consciousness, and to get useful information to a majority of prisoners.

I like the discussion on sex offenders. It was a good topic to open up debate, encourage self-struggle. Personally I am rep0ulsed by the crimes and would have trouble relating to those offenders, but realize that 1) prison is no solution (to anything but jobs in the community they get put in), and 2) Prisoners must actively resist attempts by their cagers to turn one against another to further their control. Community based therapy [re-education] for sex offenders rather than punishment [would work best].

D. B. Peaks Isl., ME

News From Shelton

It's hard to explain what's going on here at [Shelton] these days. The high muckey-mucks somehow decided the R Units were a little too crowded with three and four to a cell, so they shipped everyone from Birch and Spruce Halls, double bunked Pine and Evergreen, and made R4 and 5. These lucky captives get to wear bright orange jump suits and it adds a nice touch to our campus atmosphere. It's sure to be a big attraction on Halloween while we try to figure out how to un-crowd [our] population. It must be something to do with either decreasing the increase or increasing the decrease.

Your issue #3 proved to be a handy guide in drafting my amended complaint. It helped me to step on the snake's tail and allege all alternatives so it can't slither away this time. Terms like "tacit authorization" and "administrative liability," together with "individual capacity" assisted me in naming defendants all the way from counselor to DOC Secretary. Thanks for the help.

D. H., Shelton, WA

Another Great Idea

We should try to force the parole board to change its name to Prison Population Control Board or PCB for short. That way their ability to recognize rehabilitation and provide post parole supervision would be more easily seen as a façade by the public.

C. R., Kent, WA

We Were Correct

Your article [in #3] was correct about the housing of mental cases here in the IMU. You try and live with a guy talking day and night about how he was beaten, tortured and raped by half the guards and inmates in a 3 state area. Yet another is "brewing" a feces-urine-footcream cocktail, and another is throwing feces and urine on the tier. And of course what would a cracker barrel be without at least one screaming at the top of his lungs about the multi-million dollar lawsuit he's gonna file. Oh, and there's the one who thinks he's a werewolf and who subjects us to midnight calls of the wild.

I wish to further compliment PLN on the international section. I am involved in several international situations, and your paper brings me closer to the intonation scene. We must all help each other.

D. O., Walla Walla, WA

We Were Wrong

I would like to take exception to your article "Where Now For The Sex Offender" [in issue #4]. Your apparent bias in the negative regarding these people leaves much to be desired. I realize you are entitled to your opinion, but you came up real short not only in being factual but in your bigotry. I am truly disappointed that you would print trash that's sensationalistic garbage.

An Inmate's Wife

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