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The Bounty on Sheriff Joe

The Bounty on Sheriff Joe

PHOENIX - JULY 29: Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio speaks to the media in front of his county jail on July 29, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona, the day Arizona's immigration enforcement law SB 1070 went into effect. AP

The Chattanoogan Press via YellowBrix

August 05, 2010

Note: The Following is an Opinion Column

For several years one of my biggest heroes has been ‘Sheriff Joe,” the colorful Joe Arpaio of Arizona’s Maricopa County. If ever there was a face for Arizona’s fearless fight against illegal immigrants it is the Massachusetts-born lawman whose no-nonsense approach towards crime in Phoenix has enthralled millions just like me.

Now comes word a Mexican drug cartel has put out a $1 million bounty on the iron-fisted sheriff. That’s right; last week a Mexican drug lord from the Juarez cartel, incensed by the way Sheriff Joe’s posses are fouling up the illegal drugs his “mules” are sneaking through the desert, sent word he’d pay $1 million (in U.S. dollars, not pesos) to anyone who would bring him Joe Arpaio’s head.

“Just a million?” the 78-year-old sheriff reportedly harrumphed, “The last time I had a hit put out on me it was for $5 million. The economy must be bad down in Mexico,” he added before calmly going about this business. "I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing. It doesn’t matter to me.”

As the Obama administration continues the tangle with Arizona over the state’s proposed – and wildly popular – efforts to crack down on illegal immigrants who are flooding the country, “Sheriff Joe” continues to dole out justice his own way. When a frantic court ruling delayed Arizona from enacting its new legislation on Aug. 1, Joe’s posse did a legal sweep that first morning and caught 70 who are not American citizens.

And in the midst of the national legal wrangling and the state of California “banning” all Arizona products (except for traffic cameras), the Department of Justice is now threatening to sue “The Toughest Sheriff In America,” saying he isn’t cooperating with its investigation into alleged human rights violations.

“Sheriff Joe” is taking that in stride, too. He has just appeared in a news tape, telling a reporter he’s put up more tents where he now keeps 2,000 prisoners, and will “happily accommodate” any illegal immigrants he can catch.

“I have plenty of room for any cop that wants to arrest people," he said, but the tape’s most delicious segment comes at the end of Monday’s interview with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell where he says he would be happy to discuss immigration with President Obama.

“Why doesn’t he call me to the White House and we’ll have a little wine like he called the Cambridge police sergeant that arrested the professor,” Arpaio said. “I’ll be glad to talk and give him some advice of my 30-years in the federal government, but he won’t call me, he’s had the Justice Department investigating me.”

Oh, I love the guy who makes his prisoners wear pink boxer shorts. He has recently cut the taxpayer’s food costs by another $20,000 a year because he refuses to serve salt and pepper. His deputies even carry pink handcuffs and they march criminals to the courthouse and back!

Several years ago “Sheriff Joe” quit serving criminals coffee (“It has no nutritional value”) and his chain gangs, which clean up litter, paint over graffiti and bury the county’s indigents, now include females and juvenile law-breakers. “If you don’t like it here, don’t come back after you get out!”

The New York Times had a sobering story several weeks ago, saying this summer’s savage heat has now killed over 750 Mexicans who are illegally trying to slip across the desert border. The Maricopa County morgue is overflowing the heat is so bad.

But when human-rights activists whine that Joe Arpaio is inhumane, he snarls back, “Tell that to our solders in Iraq who are wearing full body armor in the same kind of weather!”

The same activists, you’ll remember, used a federal law that made “Sheriff Joe” return televisions to the prison population. Joe Arpaio complied, but he had the TVs altered where they would only show the G-rated movies and the Weather Channel. “Why the Weather Channel? I want ‘em to know how hot it’s going to be … this ain’t the Hilton!”

Oh, if only our nation would elect more like him in the weeks ahead.

  • 21_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Way to be Sheriff, He is definitely a cops cop. I wish that he would come to Oklahoma, Keep up the great work

  • Me_at_reunion_party_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    i love his quote "if you dont like it here, dont come back after you get out" it simple dont break the law and you wont go to jail i guess there's people that dont understand that.

  • Pdpic_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    SHERIFF JOE FOR PRESIDENT! at least we know he wont go apologizing to all the other countries

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 5 years ago


    Keep up the good work Sheriff Joe
    All of us tax payers have to cut cost why the hell not the low lifes
    Chief Barrow

  • Team_opca_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    I love Sheriff Joe! Wish there were more like him. These constant attacks against him are rediculous and sucha waste of tax payer money. I thought our Federal Government wasnt supposed to meddle in the affairs of a State and was elected and empowered by the people. Here is one of the nation's most popular Sheriff's, elected and empowered by the people, enforcing the laws and doing it the way the peole want him to do it. The liberals and Federal Government attack him for it. A weaker man may have quit or thrown in the towel with this constant barrage of assaults against him professionally and personally. NOT SHERIFF JOE!!! Keep up the good work and hang in there!

  • Iphone_002_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    love that guy

  • Policememorial---a_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Ya gotta love Joe, he is one hell of a great Sheriff!

  • Me_last_wk_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Get'em Joe

  • Marinesegaiwoblues1024x768_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Sheriff Joe...the cop's cop. God I love this guy!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 5 years ago

    Sheriff Joe you are more than welcome to come to Sacramento County and drop the hammer not only on the criminals in this sorry county but the Deputies that work for it. Our county law is a joke compared to your Dept Sir. Just give us three solid years and blow these a-hols out of the water. Keep up the good work Sheriff and remember if your NOT drawing complaints, your NOT doing your job.

  • 2011_range_day_2-19-10_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Sheriff Joe is the kind of modern day lawman many bureaucratic type brass could learn from.
    With Joe I'd proudly march into hell.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 5 years ago


    You Go JOE!!!

  • 1979_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    Joe is a media whore but damn it, I gotta love this Law & Order guy! He does exactly what should be and needs to be done both enforcing the laws and in the jail.

  • Fallenherobadge-3-1_max160_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    I wonder if this is what is inspiring Eric Holder and his minions at the Justice Dept. I don't suppose the Mexican Drug Cartel has any restrictions against paying the bounty to US Govt. officials.

  • Picture_002_max50


    almost 5 years ago


    I love this article! Makes me smile, because I know, at least Sheriff Arpaio is doing his job, when are you gonna sit down with him Obama? People have so many complaints, but he is enforcing laws, like every police officer should. The feds who hinder him from enforcing the law should be arrested themselves, for hindering law enforcement. Amazingly he gets human rights violations? How? because the tents dont have air conditioning? I thought when you do to jail, you dont want to come back, its not a hotel.

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