Stephen Guy Hardin / September 19, 2011

i-Phones for Cell Block C

Lawmakers in the California statehouse voted this week to impose steep fines and other stiff penalties for state prisoners caught possessing illegal cell phones.

The smuggling and selling of illegal cell phones has grown to phenomenal proportions in recent years within the California penal system. In some instances inmates have been known to pay almost 1000 dollars or in the prevalent currency of the California prison system, 74,000 pesos and your sisters phone number.

"We know they’ve been used to organize street gangs, traffic drugs and intimidate witnesses,“ said state Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), author of the bill, which the Assembly approved 74 to 0. "But since most of the inmates are contributors to the Democrat National Committee we felt hesitant to remove their only source for calling in contributions."

Under the new law smuggling cell phones into prisons would be punishable by up to six months in jail, a $5,000 fine and having your cell cable station restricted to 24 hours of the Oprah Network.

Restricted, indeed.

The state senate approved the measure only after receiving assurances that the inmates could now mail in their contributions to the Obama reelection campaign. California’s bachelor governor, Jerry Brown, who as California’s attorney general was outspoken about the dangers posed by inmates with cell phones unless it was proved they had a record of voting Democrat, is expected to pass the bill once he returns from a child pornography fact finding mission in Thailand with his personal assistant/ valet/ masseuse Pablo.

But, I digress.

 The issue had recently gained notoriety when former community organizer and mass murderer Charles "Chuckie” Manson was found with several cell phones in his possession. Apparently Mr. Manson’s illicit use of these contraband phones had gone unnoticed by prison officials until Mr. Manson began organizing a call bank for the reelection of Democrat California Senator Dianne ‘Squeaky’ Feinstein.

In addition the ACLU has threatened a lawsuit against the state of California stating that denying criminal’s use of cell phones is a denial of their basic human rights and inhibits the inmate’s ability to manage their various business interests outside of prison. A statement issued by an unnamed source with the famed civil rights litigation organization claimed,

“The ACLU will not rest until all prisoners in the California penal system not only have access to illegal cell phones, but also have the right to illegally hack into the cell phones of others. We will not rest until we have protected the criminal’s constitutional right to have illegal cell phones. The motto of our campaign will be ‘I-Phones for Cell Bloc D!’”

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