Perhaps you have heard of the Sheriff in Maricopa County, Arizona.  He is Sheriff Joe Arpaio.  What is so remarkable about him?  Well, it’s because he is tough on crime and understands it and the people who are involved in comitting the transgressions.  How and why could a Sheriff have such a background in dealing with these issues?

Perhaps some background is in order.

He began his career as a federal narcotics agent, establishing a stellar record in infiltrating drug organizations from Turkey to the Middle East to Mexico, Central, and South America to cities around the U.S. His expertise and success led him to top management positions around the world with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). He concluded his remarkable 32-year federal career as head of the DEA for Arizona.

Well, it would appear he has some very good qualifications for this job.  But you might have to wonder why some might not like him or his methods.  Here is a snapshot of how he works and what he does…

What could create controversy about a Sheriff’s job?  Speeding tickets?  Seeing to the recipents welfare or by his work for the citizens of Maricopa County?  It seems Sheriff Joe knows how to get results and takes his job very seriously.  Want an example?  Here are a few…

Of equal success and notoriety are his chain gangs, which contribute thousands of dollars of free labor to the community. The male chain gang, and the world’s first-ever female and juvenile chain gangs, clean streets, paint over graffiti, and bury the indigent in the county cemetery.

Also impressive are the Sheriff’s get tough policies. For example, he banned smoking, coffee, movies, pornographic magazines, and unrestricted TV in all jails. He has the cheapest meals in the U.S. too. The average meal costs about 15 cents, and inmates are fed only twice daily, to cut the labor costs of meal delivery. He even stopped serving them salt and pepper to save tax payers $20,000 a year.

Another program Arpaio is very well known for is the pink under shorts he makes all inmates wear. Years ago, when the Sheriff learned that inmates were stealing jailhouse white boxers, Arpaio had all inmate underwear dyed pink for better inventory control. The same is true for the Sheriff’s handcuffs. When they started disappearing, he ordered pink handcuffs as a replacement. And later, when the Sheriff learned the calming, psychological effects of the color pink—sheets, towels, socks— everything inmates wear, except for the old-fashioned black and white striped uniform, were dyed pink.

excerpts from: http://www.mcso.org/index.php?a=GetModule&mn=sheriff_bio

OK, no problem so far.  People who break the law are criminals and have to pay for their crimes.  Should their time be spent doing law research, watching HBO, or having air conditioning to make them comfortable?  Why should they have government subsidized housing, meals, libraries, and recreation facilities?  After all, they broke the law.  Should they gain benefits by disregarding the laws set up to provide a civil atmosphere for the tax paying public?

Where does it stop?

Some might offer the justification; they are products of their environment or the system.  I would argue the environment is created by the system.  Well then, who creates the system?  Why, it’s the politicians and lobbyists of course.

Lobbyists for criminals – Ahhh, you might be thinking of the ACLU.  Let’s see someone broke the law and now they need lobbyists?

Here is an example… (excerpt from http://www.aclu.org/prison/conditions/36387prs20080812.html)

“The failure of Sheriff Arpaio and other Maricopa County officials to provide adequate basic medical and mental health care exposes the men and women in their custody to needless and terrible pain, deterioration of their medical and mental health and risk of permanent injury or even death,” said Margaret Winter, Associate Director of the ACLU National Prison Project.

Do all of them really require mental health evaluations?  Oh, that’s right they are a product of their unhealthy environment.  Let’s put a bandage on it.  Quick we need government oversight!

So in effect we have the system protecting the criminals, because the system failed the criminals.  That can’t be right, can it?

The Sheriff is just doing his job.

Perhaps the polticians should stick to solving major issues instead of social engineering.

And… I wish we had more Sheriff’s like this.