As a community organizer I have hosted debates and town halls for more than 30 candidates for elected office and I have not written an editorial about why an elected official should not be reelected, until now.
I believe Maricopa Sheriff Joe Arpaio should no longer serve the voters of Maricopa County and here’s why.
Recently, I watched a television ad running with the speaker saying Arpaio is a tough opponent of animal abuse. I like that, but in 2007 there were 400 victims of sex crimes who expected to have lady justice on their side but Arpaio failed to adequately investigate these crimes or just did nothing. Of these 400 sex crimes, there were 32 children who were violated by some of these criminals with little or no investigations.
Having four children of my own, I can’t imagine what the parents of those 32 children do or say to their abused child. And if my wife or a daughter were sexually abused I, too, would expect swift and harsh penalties for those criminals. Arpaio, are the children and women who were sexually abused not worthy of your constitutional requirement to protect them? Being tough on animal abuse is more important than those ladies and children who were abused? For the record, both are bad.
Arpaio was also charged with a misuse of funds sending deputies on trips to Alaska and Disneyland. That’s right, sending deputies to Disneyland while those 32 molested children are stuck here with no protection.
Closer to home, many in my community, the Latino community, continue to be targets of Arpaio in his raids targeting Latino businesses. If you look like me, have a Latino last name like me, you are treated differently than Anglos, trust me I’ve seen the Arpaio “storm troopers” in action.
Let’s continue to get rid of those who do more damage to our state than good, as voters fired J.D. Hayworth; Russell Pierce, the only state legislator to be recalled; Andrew Thomas, who was disbarred; and Will Cardon, a radical candidate much like Arpaio who was handily defeated by Jeff Flake.
Now, I do believe that there should be some reasonable solution to immigration reform and I also support defending our border. I also was disgusted with Arpaio traveling all across the United States supporting candidates who were as radical as him. It would have been nice for the sheriff to have traveled across Arizona looking for those 400 sex criminals.
Adding the costs outweighing the benefits, Arpaio has cost the Maricopa voters tens of millions of dollars of legal fees for his misdeeds while being Maricopa County Sheriff.
Misuse of power, election law violations, misuse of funds, violation of county procurement rules, racial profiling along with a long list of other violations of an elected official is why I ask Maricopa County voters to join me in supporting Paul Penzone for Maricopa County Sheriff. If not for me, do it for the women and children Arpaio failed to protect.
• Ahwatukee Foothills resident John D. Rodriguez is a community organizer and a licensed sports agent in Arizona. Reach him at email@example.com or (602) 526-7512.