By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
Selectively enforcing the law: Brilliant tactic to run that embarrassing fool Joe Arpaio's home address on the front page of New Times("Joe Strikes Back," The Bird, Stephen Lemons, December 21). I've never laughed so hard as when I saw his bulbous red nose on that stamp. All this draws attention not only to the fact that Joe's guilty of criminal malfeasance for creating conditions that killed all those people in his jails but that he's using a state law improperly to hide what's going on with his commercial property. Joe, if you've got nothing to hide, give up the records!
And for the Pinal County Attorney's Office to play right into this cretin's hands just goes to show you what a backwoods organization it is. It's just plain stupid to get involved in trying to enforce a state law that makes something illegal on the Internet and not in print or on TV. I'm speaking of publishing Arpaio's address in cyberspace, as New Times writer John Dougherty did two and a half years ago. And when you throw in that the address is published in so many places that it boggles the mind, how can these legal morons only prosecute New Times? Why not go after the state Corporation Commission, too? Why not prosecute all those Web sites The Bird cited?
The reason, of course, is: Joe Arpaio is a vindictive old coot who wants to punish New Times for failing to line up to blow him, like the local Fox news channel and the Arizona Republic have done.
Dan Martinez, Phoenix
Preferential treatment: Who the fuck does Sheriff Joke think he is? He gets to do all of his shady real estate deals under a rock somewhere, while the rest of us have to file papers, etc. Come on, Joe, what are you so afraid of? That we might find out you're the big crook most of us think you are? That you might end up eatin' green baloney in Tent City someday? Don't worry, Joe. If they catch your hand in the cookie jar, they'll probably send you to Florence, where the food's a lot better.
What I don't get either is that the rest of the local press ignored the latest story as if nothing at all happened. Those idiots are obviously scared to death that Arpaio would indict them, too, or at least make their lives harder. If all of the local media were after Arpaio's ass, he wouldn't last long, which makes me think the Republic and others have a reason to kiss his rear in print and to ignore all of Joke's bull, like trying to indict a whole newspaper!
G. Rose, Phoenix
Standards and practices: When you don't possess the IQ or education to conduct an actual discourse of ideas, it's easy to revert to junior high school tactics. Publishing Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's personal home address on your cover violates every standard of conduct that an honorable organization aspires to.
Phoenix New Times is a disgrace to the profession. I hope that a planned felony indictment by the Pinal County Attorney's Office can be (despite a possible conflict of interest) joined by the Maricopa County Attorney as well. I hope that the principals responsible are convicted and actually serve time for this offense. I plan to work hard with my friends in Phoenix to encourage them to cancel advertising in your publication.
Stephen Anderson, Tempe
Hanging Lemons: As I was walking out of the convenience store one recent morning with coffee and the latest New Timesin hand, I started to read the cover. My first response was an out-loud, "HOLY SHIT!"
Joe and his troops are going to hang Stephen Lemons! After reading the article in toto (well-crafted, I might add), it seems Arpaio has no legal grounds to sue. His address is public information.
It will be interesting to see what Joe's response will be. I want a ringside seat.
William Thurber, Chandler
Despise and conquer: There's definitely something too self-serving by The Bird's recent opening sentence: "It's been obvious to The Bird for a long time that Sheriff Joe Arpaio despises New Times." The only thing more clear than that is that New Times despises Joe Arpaio.
I actually enjoyed The Bird's takes on the mind-numbing stupidity of Arizona's 9/11 "memorial" commission and the lunacy of the conspiracy theorists who believe the attack was inflicted on us by our own country (I work with a couple of these wingnuts), but the rather torturous justification for printing Sheriff Joe's home address is flimsy and suspicious at best.
To quote from The Bird, "[John] Dougherty's whole investigation started when he discovered that Arpaio'd plowed hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash into various Valley properties."
I can check with a Realtor or a bank clerk, but I believe this is called "investing," right?
"It all looked fishy, considering the sheriff's spent his life as a humbly paid public official. Maybe the deals were on the up-and-up, and maybe not."
I know someone who made about $6 million in Valley land investments and he was a humble security guard.