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Editorial Comments

by Ed Mead

It's evidently necessary for us to repeat some messages every so often. Our increasing readership turnover is such that we will always have new groups of convicts to educate. And educating folks is what we're all about. Anyway, this month's "message rerun" will be to re-emphasize that Paul and I don't do legal work for our readers. In particular, we do not do prisoner's personal criminal cases or appeals. Search the pages of the PLN as you will, you won't find any criminal law citations. We're about political and civil rights for prisoners. We are not about trying the secure some form of judicial vindication for you in the courts (we've got more sense than to expect something so unrealistic as "justice" for the masses of poor people).

So please, dear readers, don't send us those letters explaining the particular injustices surrounding your individual imprisonment, and asking us to assist you in rectifying this terrible wrong. We don't have the time or inclination to do so. Paul and I are looking for people willing to give energy to the struggle to abolish slavery and to extend democracy to all, including prisoners. Feel free to write us often; we enjoy hearing from you. But when doing so try to resist that urge to put your individual concerns above those of the struggle for economic equality and social justice. We simply don't have the resources to help meet your personal legal needs.

You folks out there on the streets who have computers and modems can now download the PLN via electronic mail on the Peace Net. Once you have logged onto the net the access sequence is "aforum@moose.uvm.edv". Before too long we will also be available on e-mail to potential European readers by way of a progressive computer network there. We will have more information for you on all of this as it develops.

Many of our regular readers may have noticed a recent deterioration in the usual quality of the newsletter's format. In the August issue, for example, three articles were cut off without the final sentence or two being printed, and we are having more typographical errors as well. This is not a reflection of our getting lazy or anything like that. The simple point of the matter is that we recently lost the outside volunteer who was doing our computer work, and we are now in the midst of the difficult process of training another. So be patient with us. And with any luck at all we will be back up to our usual production standards in early 1993. Our financial base is sound, we continue to have a solid core of volunteers, and Paul and I remain committed to providing you with the best legal news and prison related information available. We'll be here for you as long as you are there for us. So far you've been a wonderful readership to work for. You are our source of pride.

That about wraps it up for this month. Be sure to notify us of any address changes. If you are in a control unit or on death row and you see a "final issue" notice on your address label, that only means you need to drop us a note, letting us know that you are getting the paper and would like to continue receiving it. As always, if any of you have an article or item of news you'd like to share with people, be sure to pass that on to us as well. As always, we can use those contributions of stamps and money so keep sending them in as best you can. Remember, justice should be restorative, not punitive. Punishment is a crime.

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