Last Friday President Trump pardoned former Maricopa County (Ariz.) Sheriff Joe Arpaio who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for ignoring a 2011 court order. The court order prohibited Arpaio from violating the constitutional rights of minorities by using racial profiling when stopping and detaining Latinos. The horrors of Joe Arpaio extend far beyond simply racial profiling:
- He ran a jail he described as a concentration camp.
- Prisoners there died at an alarming rate, often without an official explanation.
- One of his deputies almost broke the neck of a handicap inmate.
- He once marched only Latino inmates through a segregated area with electric fencing.
- An inmate lost her baby waiting for medical care.
- He ran a “Mugshot of the Day” contest on the official sheriff website.
- His office refused to investigate hundreds of sex abuse cases, many involving children.
- He sent a deputy to Hawaii to look for President Obama’s birth certificate.
- In 2013, a federal judge confirmed Arpaio had been racially profiling Latinos.
- He continued to racially profile and was charged and found guilty of contempt of court.
Arpaio ran for re-election in 2016. We helped organize voters. He lost.
He was due to be sentenced on October 5th however on Friday, President Trump usurped the rule of law. This pardon is a ringing endorsement of racism from the highest office in the land, the President of the United States. In these last two weeks the president has stood shoulder to shoulder with Neo-Nazis, white supremacists, anti-transgender bigotry and now a civil rights tormenter.
Every day it seems Trump goes to a new low while Republicans are scared to openly call him out. While we can’t change what they’ve done, we can certainly make them regret it. Trump thinks he’s untouchable – help us prove him wrong.
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