April 26, 2009
With all the nonsense being uttered by political leaders who are blaming American gun owners for the violence in Mexico, it’s refreshing to hear at least one elected official offer some common sense: Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona.
Sheriff Arpaio takes his oath of office to protect and defend the U.S. Constitution seriously. He is also fully committed to doing his part to protect our homeland from people who are here illegally. In fact, the Sheriff would make quite an effective Director of Homeland Security.
Employing more than 3,000 people, Arpaio runs the nation’s third largest Sheriff’s office in the fourth most populous county. He has gained fame over the years for tough, no-nonsense law-enforcement tactics.
When faced with a shortage of cells, Arpaio bought army surplus tents and surrounded them with a barbed wire fence. He also upset the soft-on-crime crowd by “outrageous” actions such as banning smoking and pornography and requiring inmates to wear pink underwear. And he actually makes prisoners work on roads and other manual labor. Inmates are in prison, after all, not in day care.
Arpaio is most well known for his strong stance against illegal immigration. In 2005, Arizona made smuggling illegal aliens a state felony. That action empowered officers such as Sheriff Arpaio to enforce immigration law, something at which the federal government has failed miserably.
But perhaps what enrages the anti-gun liberal establishment the most — though it almost never makes the news — is that Sheriff Arpaio actually believes in the Second Amendment and he trusts average citizens with firearms! Arpaio deputized citizen volunteers from every walk of life and income bracket. These citizen-volunteers patrol malls, arrest graffiti violators, dead beat parents, and even illegal aliens. The volunteers furnish their own airplanes, jeeps and horses — and they are armed.
Regarded as America’s toughest sheriff, Arpaio actually enforces the law by seeking out, arresting and incarcerating those who break it. After all, isn’t that what a LAW ENFORCEMENT officer is supposed to do?
Sheriff Arpaio may enrage socialist liberals, but he has the confidence of his constituents, who have elected him by wide margins every four years since 1992.
Contrast what Sheriff Arpaio is doing to uphold the law with proposals to strip Americans of their Second Amendment rights put forth by President Obama and other political leaders.
Attorney General Eric Holder said in a February press conference, “As President Obama indicated during the campaign, there are just a few gun-related changes that we would like to make, and among them would be to re-institute the ban on the sale of assault weapons…. I think that will have a positive impact in Mexico, at a minimum.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is all too eager to reinstate the gun ban signed by her husband in 1994, calling its expiration a “mistake.”
“The guns that are sold in the United States, which are illegal in Mexico, get smuggled over our border and arm these terrible drug-dealing criminals so that they can outgun these poor police
officers along the border and elsewhere in Mexico. So we’ve got to help out here.… So I think recognizing the co-responsibility is just stating the obvious,” Clinton said. Well, the only thing obvious about Clinton’s anti-gun rambling is that it is utter nonsense.
These “blame America first” U.S. officials are echoing the ridiculous and condescending statement of Mexican Attorney General Eduardo Medina Mora, who said the United States should renew the so-called “assault weapons” ban. “The Second Amendment was never meant to arm foreign criminal groups,” the foreign leader lectured.
Gee, thanks for the history lesson SeÃ±or Mora, but we think our Founding Fathers got it right over 200 years ago.
For one thing, drug cartels in Mexico often use fully automatic machine guns, grenades, anti-tank rockets and other weapons that are not readily available to U.S. gun owners. But more importantly, the problems of corruption and violence in another country should never be used as an excuse to curtail the rights and liberties of U.S. citizens.
The first responsibility of the American government is to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and that’s exactly what drives Sheriff Arpaio.
But what does the Sheriff get in return for protecting his county from law-breakers? Is he thanked by civil rights activists and community “organizers” for keeping criminals away from our
neighborhoods, schools and children? Is he given an award for taking his role on the front-line of border security seriously?
No! While Arpaio has been reelected by real constituents, anti-gun elitists like supposed civil rights leader Al Sharpton and ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis are calling for his resignation.
Sharpton, Lewis and other civil rights “leaders” held a national press conference recently denouncing Sheriff Arpaio and threatening to march in the streets of Phoenix if Arpaio doesn’t resign immediately.
Arpaio’s response to Sharpton? “He wants me to resign? Have I got news for him. He can stick that in his pipe and smoke it.” In addition, several Members of Congress have instigated a federal investigation of Arpaio. Reps. John Conyers (D-MI), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), and Robert Scott (D-VA) have alleged that Arpaio has committed civil rights violations.
These so-called civil rights leaders and members of Congress are shameful hypocrites. They regularly urge that we should strip Americans of a constitutionally protected civil right (to keep and bear arms), while they invent rights for illegal aliens. Members of Congress, who like the Sheriff take an oath to defend the Constitution, are the ones who should resign.
And the civil rights “leaders” should stop acting like they’re speaking for Americans when they attack heroes like Sheriff Arpaio. We at Gun owners of America believe these people are radical members of the left who would love to disarm honest American citizens—and we will fight their efforts as long as we breathe.
Sheriff Arpaio, on the other hand, would make a very effective Homeland Security chief. Keep up the good work Sheriff Joe!
© 2009 – Tim Macy – All Rights Reserved
Tim Macy is Vice-Chairman of Gun Owners of America, a gun rights lobbying organization with over 300,000 members nationwide.