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From the Editor

If this issue of PLN has a theme, it is one of the ongoing struggle against government secrecy and the suppression of free speech rights of both the media and prisoners alike. Whether it involves secret court proceedings, closed to media and the public alike, or silencing prisoner writers who would share our experiences and observations with those who will publish our writings, the desire to operate in secret is the same. With secrecy, what little accountability exists, vanishes. Prisoners have the most immediate and obvious experiences with the criminal justice system, yet a concerted effort is being made across the country to silence our voices, whether it entails punishing prisoner writers or suing them for their royalties, the goal is to silence us.

PLN is one of the few publications whose content is mostly written by prisoners by prisoners and ex prisoners and which seeks to bring both our perspective to the criminal justice debate (or what passes for one in this country) and provide prisoners and our advocates with information that can be used for progressive change. In last month's issue we sent our subscribers PLN's Fall fund raiser and a reader survey. I hope everyone takes the opportunity to send a donation above and beyond your subscription cost to support PLN and both our coverage of these important issues as well as our ability to fight some of these battles. Your support is essential because subscription and advertising income alone do not cover all of PLN's expenses. Likewise, please fill out the reader survey and let us know what you think of PLN's coverage and how we can improve it to better serve you.

Stumped for a holiday gift for friends and loved ones? Consider a gift subscription to PLN or one of the great books PLN distributes. Beginning November 1, 2003, we no longer charge shipping for book orders over $25.00.

Everyone at PLN wishes our readers a happy holiday season and best wishes for a new year of greater struggle.

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