In Historic Victory for Freedom, California Prison Rules That The Atlantic Is Not 'Contraband'

A few weeks ago, I reported on the decision of the Central California Women's Facility in Chowchilla, which is home to California's death row for women, to deny a prisoner who subscribes to The Atlantic her copy of our December, 2011, issue, which featured a photograph on the cover of an armed Talib, illustrating our story on Pakistan. The letter from the prison informing The Atlantic that the issue would not be delivered to our imprisoned subscriber stated that the cover image violates "the California Code of Regulations, Section 3134.1 (d,e), which states in part, 'no warefare [sic] or weaponary [sic]." You can read the entire letter here, as well as our appeal to the prison warden, Deborah K. Johnson, to reverse what we thought was a faulty and hasty decision.

Well, as you will see below, Warden Johnson has wisely decided that The Atlantic would most likely not provoke violence among the inmates in her charge:


Prison-Letter-JJG.jpg
In short, a smart decision. The only downside: Our Chowchilla subscriber will undoubtedly be complaining to the circulation department about late delivery.
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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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