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Under Lock & Key

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[Rhymes/Poetry] [ULK Issue 20]
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Fuck Uncle Sam


Hatred, power, envy and greed -
with not a thought of your fellow man
is the moral quota they try to breed.

Material existence at the cost of whole nations
and despite the desolation they cause overseas
they still find the need to oppress
and bring the war back to you and me.

With their foot on our necks what is the lumpen
to do but rise up and revolt against the tyranny
these capitalist pigs so mercilessly
rain down upon me and you.

Threatening us with terroristic tactics they try to discourage
us from educating ourselves and our fellow oppressed
they label us a threat and lock us away
just for what we read
labeling you a threat to the government for trying to liberate
and set our people free.

But they are the real terrorists, exploiting
weaker nations and killing over oil
their world revolves around chaos, and their evil
empires are built on blood-soaked soil.

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[Political Repression] [Security] [Kern Valley State Prison] [California] [ULK Issue 20]
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Forced into SNY for Political Organizing

MIM skull
[MIM(Prisons) has long defended a line that combats the divisions that the California Department of "Corrections" has tried to institutionalize by separating large numbers of people from the General Population (GP) into Sensitive Needs Yards (SNY). In a previous letter this comrade joined us in calling for SNY and GP alike to contribute to the struggle, while not hiding h lack of regard for SNY prisoners. Today h story serves to demonstrate why allowing the pigs to tell us who is our friend and who is our enemy is a backwards way of discovering the truth.]

I'm in the hole (Administrative Segregation Unit) once again, the material you sent found me when I needed it the most. This time around I'm found under an ISU/IGI investigation which will most likely result in me being sent to the other side (SNY). Surprising? Not really, I saw it coming since the day I committed myself to the United Struggle from Within (USW), in the form of either validation as a guerrilla revolutionary or the assassination of my character behind these walls through the SNY program that leaves a lot of brothers and sisters credibility out and in the cold away from the warmth of prisoner society's acceptance.

It's crazy how it happened all so fast. I blinked and at the drop of a dime my whole life turned upside down. It started October 16, officially with an unjustified unclothed cavity/cell search that I refused to submit to because the officer first claimed that they were hitting my cell randomly, then later said because me and my cellmate were exhibiting suspicious behavior when I was on the toilet taking a shit and my cellmate was on the assigned bunk asleep. I understood the nature of the situation that the corruption officers were creating. Someone dropped a dime on me, so I looked to get a paper trail.

By searching my cell they were committing a constitutional violation against search-and-seizure safeguards granted to prisoners such as notification of cell searching party (corruption officers involved), confiscation of personal property, and the right to appeal without retaliatory actions being taken against one. I made the choice to get the incident documented to bring to the attention of the administration here at Killer Kern, and I paid for it in the worst way possible. But still I stand revolutionary minded putting USW theory into practice outside of the study group's environment. Refusing to let the dragon win, I fight them with my pen and continue to force them to show their brutality on paper and physically.

After refusing to submit to their commands I was placed in wrist restraints and escorted to the facility program office cage where I spent the next few hours resisting the Sergeant and Lieutenant's request for me to submit to an unclothed body search. At this time the corruptions officers searching party (the Kern Valley A yard jump out boys) were back at the cell, searching, confiscating, and disposing of my property and attempting to pay me back for my resistance. They came across a kite [prison letter] that I had hidden inside a medicine bottle waiting to be delivered to it's destination. I will say that I slipped up! Cause I did.

The kite was in regards to a business arrangement that I had going on and gave details about involved individuals who were to participate. The kite was supposed to be delivered that same morning, but due to the unexpected visitors it wasn't and I thus forgot about it in the commotion of three COs at my door with their cans out ready to spray me while on the toilet for nothing.

I knew what was up, but didn't act quick enough and therefore allowed intel into the hands of law enforcement. And they had a ball with it immediately reading the kite loud enough for my neighbors, who were members of my LO, hoping to create the confusion that they did.

I spent three days in a small holding cell, cold, cuffed and shackled, taped in a dirty jumpsuit, with no linen, and a mattress that I was allowed only to lay on from 10 p.m. - 6 a.m. with no covering on it. Sleep-deprived with lights on all night attempting to sleep with restraints, I was deprived medical care, and denied high blood pressure medication. I was smelling like shit without a shower, and forced to eat cold meals without any eating utensils or a cup to drink from. I felt the firsthand experience of torture at the hands of the department of correction (corruption) until I had three bowel movements to prove that I didn't have anything concealed in my ass.

Once my bowel movements showed negative results for contraband (not an explosive device or a gun, or a knife, but simple contraband) they released me back to the yard, and to the cell I went.

Not even three hours after my arrival I received a kite about the matter of the disclosure of intel in the confiscated kite. It wasn't "Cuz how you holding up? Can we assist you any way?" or none of that. But with everything falling the way it did, I understand. Because a week prior to the incident, individuals of various groups were getting popped with phones. And all were cats who were making the dead presidents, but removed from the front lines. There was a leak and Investigative Services Unit (ISU) was getting more fat than a fat guy in an all you could eat buffet.

I was brought up on charges of being that leak. And if the shoe was on another person's foot, I would've really pushed for an old school lynching. Treason is a no no, but here it is in the accused, getting kites now from OGs on the bricks, and weeks later I find myself up against the wall with those who I've actually shed blood for, explaining that I ain't no fucking rat and did not intentionally drop intel into the hands of law enforcement. Time drew on with me and those that be, doing just as the pigs planned us to, as we were on lockdown due to a war with the Blacks and the "southern Mexicans," over a drug debt, a phone, and miscommunication that caused an eight-on-twelve melee between Blacks and Browns, and one Black to be stabbed eleven times.

The option came around to me after the verdict came in that I was guilty of loose lips. I could either clean up some green (guards), get cleaned up, or handle the individual who would clean me up. For those who can't read between the lines clean up in this situation means to stab something up good enough that the message (whatever it may be) be sent clearly.

Now it may seem like nothing, but I'm not new to this shit, I'm true to it. I ain't no crash dummy, I've got a close release date, and a lot of life to live. I ain't stabbin' no pig without no chance of getting away, and I damn sho' ain't about to be a pin cushion. So I got the hell out of dodge, and didn't blink doing it. I'm an SNY, I recognize that some will understand, but most won't and I am no longer who they seen me as. But my time was limited as any real active revolutionary is on the line abroad the people who are and love the same exact thing that they claim to hate. Straight up!

Politicizing amongst the LOs is a difficult task when the same ones you advocate for are advocating against your existence for individualist purposes. I bump heads with the big dawgz about policy even when certain radz advised against it because of my youth and their popularity, and I got exactly what they said it would get me. An early death in the prison game.

I sit in ASU now on my third month for investigation into my security concerns that I raised truthfully on a 602 appeal form. The ISU/IGI agents attempt to sell protection like they are some type of "Green Wall" protection agency. I'm told the more you cooperate and inform us into the details of drugs, cellphones, crooked cops, and criminal activity, the more we can help you. Since when does the lion help the lamb?

I attempted radio silence with MIM(Prisons) until I could get my §1983 lawsuit put in, because my mail is being highly monitored, censored, withheld and returned.

But it seems that faith will have us together married until death do us part. So I'm back like Jesus from the dead, not really back at all, reborn into the characteristic of a USW on the other side of the fence.


MIM(Prisons) responds: This letter is one more example of our point that not everyone on SNY yards is a snitch or rat as the pigs would like us to think. A bourgeois approach to security allows the bourgeoisie to win out. By bourgeois, we mean an individualist, rather than a group approach. We oppose studying "persynalities" instead of politics. And we oppose thinking that violence against individuals builds a strong movement.

There are plenty of enemies on mainline and there are friends to be found in SNY. How we associate and how we build allows us to determine which are which, not rumors or labels given out by the enemy.

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[Control Units] [ULK Issue 20]
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SMU Used to Prevent Activism

I am in the death trap called Special Management Unit (SMU). They have held me within the SMU program since 2008 with little or no communications with the outside world. The enemy understands the effectiveness of outside resources and communications so they strive to limit and/or control it using tactics that go against their own policy and program statements. We know these policies are for public consumption to create the illusion that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) protects public interest and is operating on an egalitarian level. These people fear collective progressive thinking. They want us programmed - living as the walking dead, and spreading the chaos of disorganization and the poison of anti-progressive action as we go. To effectively do this they have built the SMU program across the country. It is a death trap and an anti-progressive machine that is building and creating reactionary mind sets. The psychology behind 23 hours a day lockdown for a few years is to bend and twist a soulja to their will.

Most of the SMU population is gang- or organization-based. Most say once they hit population again they are laying it down, and following the rules. No one I've run into talks about building an anti-program machine to combat the SMU or the BOP. None of the gangs or organizations have created a progressive way to reach out and show unified efforts to survive this death trap. It's a death trap because without unified progressive action on our part the enemy gains an edge and uses our disunity and disorganization as a tool to continue to control us.

We become brainwashed agents of the oppressors and turn a homemade sharpened revolutionary anti-oppressor weapon against another oppressed captive man/woman. I've seen GD and the Bloodz war, Crip against Crip sets war, Mexican gangs against other Mexican gangs war, but none commits to warring with the key holder. All say "fuck the pig," but none has used action aimed at fucking up the pig. When I say action, I am talking about hard-core, guerilla, strategic revolutionary action. Action with purpose and filled with resolve.

Let's unite in more than our sufferings!
Power to those who don't fear freedom!


MIM(Prisons) responds: If this writer’s call for “hard-core, guerilla, strategic revolutionary action” is a call to take up weapons against the pigs, then we would disagree with h analysis of history and current conditions. At this time in the imperialist countries the conditions are not ripe for armed struggle. Engaging too soon will undoubtedly bring defeat.

Yet we agree with this writer's analysis of the SMU program as a tool to suppress revolutionary activism. The whole prison system is set up to encourage sets to fight each other instead of the system. This is why we have put out a call for groups to join the United Front for Peace in Prisons.

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[Abuse] [Utah]
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Utah Board of Pardons

The Utah crooked board of pardons and parole has supreme power over how much time a person has to serve in the Utah crooked prison system.

In the state of Utah, the way they sentence you to time is a trap and set up for the crooked board of pardons to be able to discriminate and snake a person in this crooked system.

In the state of Utah, the way this crooked system works in sentencing is called un-determinate sentencing. For example:
1. First degree felony - 5 years to life
2. Second degree felony - 1 year to 15 years
3. Third degree felony - 0 years to 5 years

The board has the power to make you do anything from the beginning of that sentence to the end of that sentence. Not only can the crooked Utah state board of pardons and parole make you do whatever amount of time they want to, but also they can make people convicted of the same crime and the same type of charge do more than others.

You can have two people on the same crime or the same type of charge, and one does 2 years and the other does 5 years, this is the case all the time, which demonstrates the discrimination and bias by the crooked Utah state board of pardons and parole.

Also when you come into the prison the prison does a criminal assessment which gives them a time matrix on how much time you should do. But the Utah crooked state board of pardons does not even follow the time matrix, and more then likely you are gonna do over your time matrix. Further, the judge can sentence your charges to run concurrently, but the board can go against the courts ruling and make that sentence run consecutive at will.

The Utah state board of crookedness as you can see has the power here in Utah to pick and choose who they want to discriminate against. Race, sexuality, religion, or even if they do not like the way you look.

They own you and have the power over your life and death. They have too much power and they need to be stopped.


MIM(Prisons) responds: This is just one example of the many ways the criminal injustice system has wide discretion to discriminate against groups of people. This is used to lock up and extend sentences of people from oppressed nations, leading to hugely disproportionate imprisonment of Blacks and Latinos compared to whites in Amerika. Further this discrimination is used against politically active prisoners to punish them for fighting for their legal rights.

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[Campaigns] [Abuse] [Okaloosa Correctional Institution] [Florida]
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Grievance Fight in Florida

In February I was taken to Captain Schwartz's office where he confronted me about writing grievances. I was then locked up, had 5 Disciplinary Reports (DRs) falsified on me, received 210 days of confinement time and lost 150 days gain time. After having been placed in the cell with a prisoner who had written a grievance on the warden for chewing tobacco in a state building, we were illegally gassed twice, made to sleep on raw steel for three days and nights with nothing but a pair of boxer shorts on, and then placed on a loaf diet for 7 days.

This is the second time that I've been under attack at this institution for exercising my first amendment right to write grievances and both times they started with the same captain and both times the Warden, Colonel, and Central Office of Appeal have backed him up. I have been under attack at two other institutions in the past for writing grievances and both times Central Office knowingly and willfully allowed me to be illegally sent to Close Management (CM) [Editor: term for isolation/control units in Florida].

I have high blood pressure and I suffer from asthma and I am not supposed to be gassed. When he gassed us the first time, I tried to tell him about my medical condition and when he saw me throwing up blood and blood running out my nose, he immediately gassed us again. Out of fear for my life, I have not eaten but two selective meals to stay mentally alert since February 22, 2011.

During this time, I was placed in the cell with another prisoner and he was threatened to be gassed and have DRs falsified on him because he refused to take my tray in the cell so it would look as though I was eating to the camera. Finally, an officer just threw a meal tray in the cell and wrote down that I ate that meal. I am definitely not going to let them get away with what they have done to me and are still doing to me. I would appreciate any help you may be able to give me and I would also like to start receiving your newsletter. I just received notice that they are trying to send me back to CM.


MIM(Prisons) responds: Because of the failure of the grievance process in prisons across the country, we have initiated a grievance campaign. If you are in Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas and California write to us to get copies of the petition and letter for your state, or if you are in another state write for a generic petition that you can modify for use in your state.

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[United Front] [ULK Issue 20]
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Statement of Unity from the Makavelian People's Party (MPP)

As a lumpen organization we are committed to creating an active peace between all lumpen organizations, both within prisons and on the streets. To this end, we agree to uphold the Statement of Principles set forth by MIM(Prisons) and other organizations in the United Front for Peace in Prisons.

Officially,
Prince Capone, Chairman of the MPP-Seattle Chapter
Comrade Booby, Chairman of the MPP-Prison Chapter

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[Africa] [Middle East] [ULK Issue 20]
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No U.$. Intervention in Libya

U.$. sucks Arab oil
On March 19 2011, the United $tates, playing the role as leader of the united nations forces, began bombing areas in Libya. What we know from the imperialist media is that small pockets of opposition to the Libyan government are attempting to rebel and attack the current government.

While we observe these developments in the Middle East in general, but more particularly in Libya, we must first understand the history as well as the current relations of production in these governments to really grasp the conditions and contradictions on the ground. It's good to understand the world and pay attention but it's better to know the truth and be able to sort through the BS that blurs reality and works to shape ideas to the imperialist program.

Libya, like much of the Middle East, has long been eyed by Amerika because of its vast oil reserves. Libya was colonized up until after World War II when it then became a semi-colony that was under U.$. and British influence with a monarchy under King Idris.

In the 1960s the Middle East, like much of the world, felt a whirlwind of revolution and liberation struggles that swept the globe. Libya also caught this upsurge of anti-colonial fever, and King Idris was overthrown by military officers in 1969. Moammar Gadhafi was the leader of this coup.

Although Libya changed its name to the "Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya" it is not currently a socialist country. There are revolutionaries within Libya but for the most part they do not lead any of the struggles we see in U.$. media. The incantation of imperialist propaganda is that the Libyan people are going to overthrow Gadhafi and that the majority want him out, but this is false.

Just as the U.$. used the south Vietnamese to massacre Vietnamese freedom fighters, just as the U.$. used the contras to massacre their country men the Sandinistas, and the Afghan against Afghan, Iraqi on Iraqi, so too are they now using Libyan to destroy Libyan. I wonder when the masses of the world will ever unite to take on the true oppressor?

Let's be clear Gadhafi did not come to power through a socialist revolution, although he did make some concessions and reforms, particularly with tribal alliances. For the most part what is practiced in Libya is a form of state capitalism where revenue from oil fuels the economy. Nonetheless they should not be met with imperialist intervention nor should the united nations be used to dictate their air space as another Iraq under Sadaam Hussein.

The opposition that the United $tates seems to cozy up to the most is the National Front for the Salvation of Libya which is known to be funded and trained by the CIA. This group, which was founded in 1981, has been based on the border of Egypt and Libya and seems to be the main vehicle for propping up a U.$. puppet government in Libya should the Gadhafi regime fall.

But let's get to the heart of the matter in this U.$. intervention: the main reason for this attack on Libya is oil! It's ironic how the so-called "united nations" have their hands in this intervention when within their very own documents, specifically the 1514 Declaration, they claim to grant self-determination to colonized nations and peoples. Yet here we are watching them deny self-determination. Not that we expect these imperialists to act in any way that isn't exploiting the people, but it shows those who are unaware of their parasitic aims what they're really about.

With the largest oil reserves in Africa it's no surprise that this nation is a target of the United $tates. We have seen this played out in Iraq where the no-fly zone was set up as a prelude for outright war and occupation. As I write this I'm sure backroom deals are being banged out between the imperialist countries on who gets what and at what price. Until these business agreements are worked out we probably won't see "troops on the ground" from the United $tates.

We see in the U.$. media accusations of Gadhafi being a "mad dog" but why was he invited years back to the United $tates? We all remember the jokes of him pitching a tent on one of Donald Trump's properties. The same bad things were said of Sadaam and Bin Laden but we see old pictures of both of them smiling with U.$. politicians at one time. Just to be clear, none of them were pushing for a socialist revolution. It is the pattern of being business partners with the United $tates, and then when the United $tates can't exploit these leaders to the extent that they want those same business partners become "mad dogs" or better yet "terrorists."

As Maoists we say no to imperialist intervention! We say no to the exploitation of the people around the world! We say hands off Libya! We hope for the masses of Libya to use this situation to create a socialist revolution to discard all oppression! End the intervention!


MIM(Prisons) adds: Many legitimate wars for liberation start with "small pockets of opposition" fighters, so it is hard to use numbers to judge a movement from afar. What we can see is that whether monarchist forces, CIA-backed "pro-democracy" parties or Islamic fighters, all of the "rebel" voices in the press are supporting imperialist intervention in Libya. This is what tells us they do not represent the masses of Libya. No to U.$. Imperialism! Unity within keeps the imperialists out!

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[Censorship] [Control Units] [Texas] [ULK Issue 20]
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We Must Fight ULK Denials

I am writing this article to encourage and support my fellow prisoners to appeal the publication denials for Under Lock & Key. Don't give up in our fight for our rights. By not appealing the denial you are also stopping other prisoners from a chance to receive the above mentioned newsletter that many enjoy reading.

I am housed in the "close custody" section at a high security prison farm in Texas. We are always having our rights taken away here on "close custody." Don't know about General Population (I've never made it there, due to the constant harassment of the officers in charge here) however, I am sure that just like any other prison, things are not too much different.

I'm restricted to a two-man cell, 24 hours a day with no movement. Everything comes to you. What a privilege, right? I don't feel so privileged. We are allowed recreation only when staff feel like coming to their jobs to work. If you're not on recreation restriction, you may go to rec once a week. If you are a prisoner on rec restriction, and most are here on close custody, then you may see the "yard" once every two months. We receive the same excuses that I'm sure all prisoners have heard, "we are understaffed and short-handed." Although, lately it has been due to the "fog" which they say is a security risk. The rec here on "close custody" is separated into six cages, under a concrete roof. How exactly does the fog pose a threat in this situation? To me it is just another way to take away our rights by sweeping another excuse under the "security risk" rug. Which brings me to my point that we have to continue fighting for our rights.

On 25 February 2011 I was notified by mail room staff that my publication of Under Lock & Key was denied and I wouldn't be receiving it. The reason given was "page 10 contains material of a racial nature." Now who's rights are being violated? What happened to "freedom of speech" in America? There was also a box checked that reads: "It contains material that a reasonable person would construe as written solely for the purpose of communicating information designed to breakdown prisons through offender disruption such as strikes, riots or security threat group activity." Sounds like another excuse swept under the "security risk" rug. Don't you agree?

Although imprisoned, we do still have rights, but only the ones we continue to fight for. When asked, "do you want to appeal this denial?" always appeal, if not for yourself for the others on lock. You cannot win if you don't fight.

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[Middle East]
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Iraq Part 2 or Iran: The Prequel?

"Democracy" is the culprit yet again in the U.$. empire's latest adventurous gamble to spread the money-making concept of the democratic shell to the middle eastern country of Libya.

Amerika, that great city shining on a hill spread some of that luminescence to the sovereign skies of Libya over the weekend, as they lit up the night sky with the glow of over 160 long range missiles in their effort to supposedly stop the Libyan government from killing of innocent civilians. Ironically enough, more lives were taken than "saved" by the amerikans as numbers have already come out of Libya that at least 70 civilians were killed by the strike.(1)

The Arab League has come out in anger and denounced not just the U$ but their international lackey bureaucracy (the UN) for authorizing and initiating the deadly strikes. Even republocrats, Michael Honda and David Kucinich have criticized and questioned this abominable act.(1)

Some may ask, well, wasn't the Arab League down with Amerikan intervention in Libya? And the answer is yes, however, the strength of anti-imperialist pan-Arabism in the region was reflected as they wavered when the bombs actually started to drop.

There are two reasons that the U$ is giving for it's current open aggression. One is for the firm support and protection of the Libyan people. The other is their supposed concern that Gadhafi is possibly in the possession of weapons of mass destruction, i.e. Mustard Gas.(2) Hmm. Why does this sound so familiar?

Pre$ident Obomber came out over the weekend while on his trip to Brazil, during his tour of Latin America and said that there will be no ground forces deployed to Libya, as the U$ does not wish to be at war with a third Muslim country; lest they be labeled crusaders.(1) Obomber emphasized many times over that amerika is not at war with Islam, which might actually be true per se, they just like to go to war with whatever oppressed nation happens to have something they want (oil).

Curiously enough the social-democratic government of Brazil who has the habit of paying lip-service to the plight of the oppressed (while simultaneously oppressing and exploiting it's own proletariat) had nothing to say about it's amerikan guest, nor did they have anything to say about their abstention from the UN vote to bomb Libya... all of a sudden!

So now two questions are begged. Are we currently seeing the sequel to the invasion of Iraq, which has had disastrous consequences to the Iraqi people? Doubtful, but you never know with these imperialists. Or are we seeing a possible test run for a similar style bombing of Iran?

Regardless of what you think of Gadhafi and his regime, Libya is a nation oppressed by imperialism and currently under attack, it must be defended. The imperialists need to keep their filthy hooves out of the mix and let the Libyan people decide their own destiny.

Notes:
1. En Contexto, ch 52, Telemundo March 21, 2011.
2. Face the Nation, CBS, March 20, 2011

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[Censorship] [Missouri] [ULK Issue 23]
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The System Fails Us, but We Stay Committed

On 4 February 2011, I received a Memorandum and Order regarding the Motions of Summary Judgment on the suit that I filed on two issues of Under Lock & Key (February 2008 and September 2008) that were censored, and four pamphlets from Kansas Mutual Aid (KMA). In short, summary judgment was granted on the two ULK issues.

On the February 2008 issue, the court ruled that "the first article in the publication discusses the rate of imprisonment across the United States for different races. Other articles highlight how the prison system is otherwise unfair to African-Americans and promotes 'modern day slavery.'" On the September 2008 issue, the court concluded that "the publication does appear to encourage prisoners to 'fight back' and 'unite against the unjustice [sic] system.'" Of course, the court took these statements out of the context in which they were written and implied.

When the order was received, I was doing a 30-day hit in Administrative Segregation without any of my legal materials and didn't have the opportunity to file a notice of appeal. At the same time, the Federal 8th Court of Appeals has consistently ruled against us on these issues and most likely would have upheld the lower court's ruling and hit me for another $455 for filing the appeal.

Their Motion for Summary Judgment on the four KMA booklets was denied without prejudice and they were given the option to file another pending further information. They have subsequently filed said motion and, because of the way the courts have already ruled, I expect that the court will grant their motion. I really don't expect this case will proceed further, although I am going to file a motion in opposition to their motion for summary judgment.

A tactical victory would have certainly been a good thing. On the same token, a lesson still comes out of this — that comrades must not be thinking and acting as though we are really protected by the U.$. Constitution, state and local statutes, and the myths and lies fed the settlers and colonies of the empire about Amerikkkan "democracy" and other such nonsense.

I will however continue to fight any new instances of censorship that may arise and continue to agitate, educate and organize on this and other issues.


MIM(Prisons) Legal Coordinator responds: Here the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals — which governs the states of Missouri, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Arkansas, and the Dakotas — has protected a censorship incident which might otherwise be deemed illegal in another Circuit or at the Supreme Court. Thornburgh v. Abbott, 490 U.S. 401 concluded that "Wardens may not reject a publication 'solely because its content is religious, philosophical, political, social[,] sexual, or . . . unpopular or repugnant,'. . ." In the 9th Circuit, "Prison authorities cannot rely on general or conclusory assertions to support their policies," Walker v. Sumner (9th Cir. 1990) 917 F.2d 382, 385, and "Unsupported security claims couldn't justify infringement on First Amendment rights," Crofton v. Roe (9th Cir. 1999) 170 F.3d 957. Facts in Under Lock & Key on the reality of the Amerikan prison system are no different than what one would find in any halfway decent mainstream newspaper. Any connection one might claim between these facts and a "threat to the security of the institution" is absolutely unsupported, conclusory, and based on gross generalizations.

Anyone who has read one full issue of Under Lock & Key knows that the reason given by the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals for denying the February 2008 issue is taken completely out of context, like this comrade says. MIM(Prisons) is constantly putting forth the line that armed struggle under unfavorable conditions should be avoided if at all possible; any fighting back we may advocate is only within legally acceptable means, like lawsuits. More clearly explained in Under Lock & Key issue 7 (March 2009),

"MIM(Prisons) only engages in and promotes legal means of combating injustice. When the prison staff represses every educational and legal outlet for prisoners to redress their complaints then it is clear what kind of strategies they are promoting. In those prisons, we predict there will be violence, and they cannot blame it on us because they have kept us out. This is similar to what we say about all struggles for justice around the world. We believe violence is necessary to end injustice because history has demonstrated that the oppressor never stops oppressing any other way. We do not want or promote violence, we are merely stating our conclusion from reading history. In every case of revolutionary war, it was up to the oppressor to decide whether violence was used or not. History shows that the same has been true in the prison rights movement; the struggle for prisoner rights has only become violent when the state initiated such violence."

Regarding the censorship of the September 2008 issue for calling on prisoners to unite against injustices: anyone who has read a few issues of Under Lock & Key knows that unity against the injustice system is the quickest way to reduce violence in prisons and on the streets. The article Peace in the Streets, also from ULK issue 7, shares a bit of the history of the many efforts made by lumpen organizations to join together for peace, and the efforts of the pigs to shut it down. In 2006, the Pelican Bay State Prison Peace Talks were underway in Crescent City, California; "I was able to bring all relevant parties to the table, a peace plan was adopted and a cease fire was implemented." There, also, the pigs undermined the unity.(1)

More recently, comrades all across the country have come together to develop and sign on to the United Front for Peace in Prisons. This United Front (UF) is an effort to stop the unnecessary killings and divisions in the prison environment which lead to our destruction. Interestingly, one of the points of unity of the UF is Growth, with emphasis on education. The pigs don't recognize this, but we know from experience and our study of history that political education leads to peace amongst the oppressed. Far from being censored, Under Lock & Key should be distributed widely to prisoners in the United $tates, because it will have a direct impact on the safety and security of the actual people in the prisons every day, including the guards.

This comrade has adopted a positive and correct attitude in the face of disappointment and censorship. Even though s/he is unable to receive these two issues of Under Lock & Key, s/he has not lost h commitment to apply science to strategy; h Plan B isn't to lash our or give up. More of us should follow h example and put science and the study of correct strategy, not emotions, at the forefront of our political work.

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