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CNN: Shedding Light on"Toughest Sheriff” Joe Arpaio

by Jacquelyn Mahendra on 12/26/2008 at 10:13pm

We first reported on Sheriff Joe’s small-screen debut earlier this month in a post entitled, “Pink Underwear on Primetime?” Now, it’s official: America’s most dangerous, racist sheriff is set to hit Fox reality televeision tomorrow. Here’s a video we’ve released about it:

Today CNN raised some tough questions about Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s record, quoting Paco Fabian, of America’s Voice:

But Arpaio’s critics aren’t amused.

They say they fear the show will give the controversial sheriff positive publicity, ignoring what they call a darker side to his 16-year tenure as top lawman in the county that includes Phoenix.

“It’s going to celebrate a sheriff that’s frankly scaring this community, a sheriff that has seen violent crime increase significantly in his county, a sheriff that is racially profiling the Latino community, and I doubt that the show is going to reflect that,” said Paco Fabian, spokesman for the immigrant-rights group America’s Voice.

CNN continued:

In a statement on the group’s Web site, Fabian calls Arpaio a “modern day Bull Connor,” comparing him to the public safety commissioner in 1960s Birmingham, Alabama, whose use of attack dogs and firehoses on civil rights demonstrators made him a symbol of racial intolerance. [...]

And then, of course, there’s the pink underwear.

The truth is, Sheriff Joe makes his name whatever way he can, whether dressing inmates in pink underwear or forcing them to eat rotten bologna sandwiches. Many Arizona leaders can’t stand his costly publicity stunts. According to CNN:

Earlier this year, the mayor of Phoenix wrote a letter to the U.S. attorney general’s office, asking the FBI and the U.S. Justice Department’s civil rights division to investigate Arpaio’s aggressive illegal immigration crackdowns. Mayor Phil Brown wrote that Arpaio’s sweeps show “a pattern and practice of conduct that includes discriminatory harassment, improper stops, searches and arrests.”

The letter came after Arpaio, who had already been the target of hundreds of lawsuits, launched a series of what he calls crime-suppression patrols in largely Latino neighborhoods. Critics say the patrols use racial profiling to unfairly target Hispanic drivers and pedestrians…”

It’s high time the media shed light on the true “Toughest Sheriff” Joe Arpaio and his ugly methods.

If you haven’t already, please sign the petition calling for an investigation of Joe’s tactics.

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