signs of the fascist state in america

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    Twenty-five-year-old Weldon Angelos celebrated Christmas in federal prison this year ... just like he'll do every year until he's 80.

    Last month, Angelos was sentenced to 55 years in prison for selling marijuana to undercover police officers. As U.S. District Judge Paul Cassell pointed out at sentencing, that's more time than he would have received if he had hijacked an airplane (25 years), beaten someone to death in a fight (13 years), or raped a 10-year-old child (11 years).

    In fact, the maximum sentence for all those crimes combined is less than the federal mandatory minimum sentence for a drug felony involving a gun. (Angelos was carrying a gun at the time of his arrest, although he never brandished it or threatened anyone.)

    The assistant U.S. attorney prosecuting the case justified putting Angelos -- a first-time offender and father of two -- behind bars for 55 years by saying that he was a "purveyor of poison" who got what he deserved. (The "poison" was marijuana, which has never killed anyone.)

    Angelos isn't alone in having his life destroyed by the government's war on marijuana users:

    Jonathan Magbie died three months ago while serving a 10-day sentence for marijuana possession in a jail in Washington, D.C. Magbie, a 27-year-old quadriplegic, used marijuana to treat his chronic pain. He was unable to breathe on his own, and the jail -- unequipped to meet his medical needs -- allowed him to die while in custody.

    And last year, a 19-year-old Florida college student was brutally raped by his cellmate while serving the first of four weekends in jail for a small-scale marijuana offense.

    And the year before that, 20-year-old Jose Colon -- just months away from being the first in his family to obtain a college degree -- was shot and killed by police in a raid in which eight ounces of marijuana were seized. Colon wasn't even a suspect. He just happened to be visiting the house being raided, and he had no drugs or weapons on him.
 
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