Thursday, July 14, 2005

Support your libertarian POWs, revisited


As I mentioned awhile back, it makes sense for us to support libertarian POWs/political prisoners. I'm putting together some more information on doing that. Time for an update:

- As Brad Spangler mentioned, there are existing Anarchist Black Cross networks that might be useful. Here's one. And here's another. However, Black Cross seems to be mostly a "general solidarity with prisoners" kind of thing, not a "support for a particular prisoner" kind of thing.

- Federal prisoners can receive letters at specified addresses. Sending money to them is a little more complicated. It has to be sent to a separate address so that the federal corrections thugs can put it in a "lockbox account" for them (presumably this is to keep them from having cash on hand which might come in useful in an escape, or that would make a nice big fat theft target, or whatever). The prisoners can "draw" on their "accounts" to buy items from the prison commissary.

- Money for federal prisoners has to be sent in the form of a "money order or money gram." No personal checks, and there doesn't seem to be any direct electronic payment mechanism. I've looked in vain for any online service which specializes in turning your PayPal or credit card payment into a money order for a prisoner (because many people simply will not go out, get a money order, put it in an envelope and mail it if they can avoid doing so -- I'm one of those people). No such service seems to exist. However, I've contacted some services that do similar things (auction payments, for example) to see if they're interested in acting as a conduit. As soon as I can find, or create, a convenient electronic method of routing money to federal prisoners, I'll let you know. Your five bucks could make a prisoner's month behind the wire a lot more bearable.

In the meantime, money orders for libertarian POW Don Meinshausen can be sent to:

Lockbox, Federal Bureau of Prisons
Don Meinshausen, Inmate Register number 08496-050
PO BOX 474701
Des Moines, Iowa 50947-0001

While correspondence for libertarian POW Don Meinshausen should still be sent to:

Don Meinshausen
Inmate number 08496-050
FCI FT Dix
PO Box 7000
Ft Dix NJ 08640

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