Feedback from the Issue of Thursday, January 14, 2010

CUT 'EM DOWN

An ally in Joshua: I am a longtime reader and fan of New Times. I read every article about our Nazi sheriff, Joe Arpaio, and sheep of a county attorney, Andrew Thomas, even though each sends nausea rifling through my body.

If the article "The Nooses Must Be Cut Down" doesn't fan the fire against the sheriff and county attorney, I have no clue what will.

What will it take to get these two embarrassments to Maricopa County thrown out or, even better, investigated?

It sickens me to know that even just this letter could incur the wrath of the above-mentioned idiots. I know that the mere hint of a negative word against them will bring a shit-storm of problems to anyone who dares speak out.

I just wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that New Times has my full support as a citizen of Maricopa County. I am signing my name proudly and without fear!
Joshua Friedman, via the Internet

What about the civil/human rights abuses, L.H.?: I have nothing but contempt for MCSO Chief Deputy Dave Hendershott, Sheriff Joe Arpaio, County Attorney Andrew Thomas, et al.

But your attack upon these vindictive cretins misses the mark, because you cling to such a knee-jerk liberal attitude toward illegal immigration (and I am far left of your wildest dreams — gassed in D.C. during the Vietnam protests, aided rebels in El Salvador, learned Spanish to better serve the cause). What part of "illegal" don't you understand?

The body politic, from Sun City to south Tucson, rightly sees the unfair competition [between] the taxpaying, mortgage-bearing, labor class of citizens [and] the black market bodies oozing through the border by the thousands.

These same masses resist integration and cling to language and ridiculous/dangerous cultural pride. They wave Mexican flags and march in proclamation of "La Raza."

Joe Arpaio, et al., have a legitimate role to play in combating illegal (there's that word again) aliens. So refocus your invective and get on the right side of the law when it comes to the immigration flood. You'll find yourself in surprisingly clean and consistent air, and your opposition to [Arpaio and Thomas in other areas] will enjoy wider support.
L.H. Nordin, via the Internet

Here's hoping: Wow, New Times is delusional. You actually believe that Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, who will be running for governor, is going to go after the most popular politician in Maricopa County?
Raymond Gross, Phoenix

No support for Goddard: Sarah Fenske's phenomenal article "Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Command Staff Is Caught Up in a Serious Criminal Investigation" documented the attorney general's avowals to a Pinal County judge that the investigation of the SCA [Sheriff's Command Association] was wrapping up. A motion filed in August avowed that there were "very few witnesses remaining to be interviewed."

So here we are, over four months later, and what has Terry Goddard done? I am all in favor of preparing a meticulous case against the MCSO — I want to see Arpaio and Hendershott do the perp walk as much as anyone. But given the worsening meltdown in the rule of law in Maricopa County, I don't believe we have the luxury of such a deliberate investigation by AG Goddard.

Goddard, follow the lead of Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk. The time to act is now. If you fail to show leadership in your job as attorney general, how do you expect anyone to support you in a run for governor?
Chad Snow, Peoria

A battle for public opinion: The basic problem is that Joe Arpaio and Andrew Thomas remain popular with the voters. Terry Goddard is probably afraid that action against Arpaio and Thomas would cost him votes.

If Arpaio and Thomas were unpopular, he would have no such concern. So this is very much a battle for public opinion.
Jeff Benton, Phoenix

NOTHING SACRED

Another perspective on the Joe McCarthy comparison: Great article and well researched, except for the part comparing Andrew Thomas to [the late U.S. Senator] Joe McCarthy — who actually accused real, live Soviet spies in our State Department — as we now know through the release of Soviet cables known as the Venona Project. Senator McCarthy's reputation is unfairly tarnished by your comparison.

But, otherwise, great work. I appreciate your drawing attention to this important issue. It's a fascinating case, and it's important because the county attorney's position is that [he and the sheriff] should be able to invade the rights of the individual without probable cause or even reasonable suspicion — without any personal repercussion from anyone (which is usually the case).

Let's hope the feds or the AG gets off of their rears and put them in their place.
Mark Andersen, Gilbert

 
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4 comments
Mark
Mark

I read every story you guys post on the Arpaio crew, and I agree he's a thug. His actions seem so far outside the constitution, I can't believe anyone COULD support him. I truly believe it is my responsibility as a citizen to use whatever legal means are available to bounce him - and his corrupt cronies - off of the public payroll.

My support wanes almost completely when you focus so vehemently on amnesty for people who entered this country illegally. Calling those of us who don't support you "nativists" just polarizes the issue and makes compromise impossible.

The stories you've posted over time might actually melt a few hearts, and make solutions more likely, if they weren't so militant.

I could never support an amnesty, because that's already been done once - and we were rewarded with another wave of "hopefuls". It isn't MY responsibility as a lawful US citizen to "fix" Mexico, and it's not like we've had any luck "helping" Iraq or Afganistan.

If I get to choose where my tax dollars go, I'd rather they went to my old hometown, Flint Michigan - which looks more like Mexico everyday. There's plenty of impoverished folks there who need food, healthcare and jobs.

Mary
Mary

Can you please do your investigation on this matter that took place in Florence on Jan 10, 2010 at 3:50 pmNo one gives the mother any answer on to waht realy happened. She got the body here in the mortuary, but is having it on hold until they notify his brother on Feb 13, 2010 the day after he graduated from Marine boot camp in San diego. They do not want to let him know until thenl. She has no answers, The mothers name is Ramona Salazar 623 205-6973 . She called also channel 3 but no answer or response.

karma belief says:Jessie was a person, no matter what, he was a person. You all can sit on your high horses and pass judgement. If you are so much more intelligent and better because you are not an inmate, then why are you showing such ignorance in not questioning why there are so many suicides lately? Spend time around a few guards, they are proud that these things happen.I am hoping to bring attention to this matter, but more than likely this will go ignored or set aside. Below you will find an email I sent to several departments within the AZ DOC. The only response received from DOC is that Warden Larson retired as of 01/08/2010. They couldn't even reply that this was under investigation and they could not comment. No one has bothered to question the fact that he was assaulted by Officer Apodaca (there were witnesses). Or how odd it is that as soon as SMU learned of the relationship he began with a former guard, he is suddenly found dead and they call it a suicide. Sure it may have been, but with all of the other information, why are there no further questions being asked? What if this had been your son, brother, father, or anyone else important to you? When a person called down there to check on him after he had been trying to reach them that day, why didn't the guard check on him? If he had been having issues earlier, and the person called, why were they told to call back on Monday and ask someone else? Had that guard got up and looked into this, this never would have happened... (email follows)How unfortunate yet another inmate has been able to succeed with possibly having committed suicide. What exactly are my tax dollars covering in these facilities? Obviously not education and training...Let me get to the point. The death notification and news articles state that an investigation is under way. Are you going to do a proper investigation and start from the beginning? Are you going to take this back to the Lewis complex where Jessie was assaulted BY A CORRECTIONAL OFFICER for getting involved with one of the other officers? Where the assault took place AFTER she QUIT her job to be with him? And while DURING the assault, the guard made it clear as to why he was beating Jessie? Are you going to go back to Lewis where SSU got involved after she quit and started doing everything they could to cut him off from recreation, where things as simple as a TV were taken from him, where he was cut off from mail, phones, and other family before they shipped him off to SMU? Are you going to look into why he was not being given his mail because the officers at Lewis took it upon themselves to share the letters and pictures he was sent? Again all of this happening AFTER she QUIT working there. They cut him off from the world during the same time his brother and grandfather passed away. During the same time his own children were experiencing hardships in life and he couldn't even contact them. You may be thinking what this has to do with suicide and SMU... Are you going to look into officers being advised on 01/10/2010 that Jessie was not doing well and needed either attention or supervision? Are you going to look into him being pulled out of his cell for a brief time and then sent right back, all the while no one taking into consideration just how serious his mental state may have been. Why wasn't he placed on watch? Are you going to look into why there are two versions of how he was found? One states he was found in his cell and the other claims he ran through the door and jumped when it was opened. Do all of your guards open a door and then stand to the side to allow an inmate such freedom of movement? And once again Jessie had been cut off from his family because someone let them know at SMU he had become involved with woman that had QUIT her job at Lewis to be with him. Did she mean that much to all of you? Are you all satisfied that you not only broke him but cost him his life? And was whatever you were told worth a life? But let me guess, this will go nowhere because anyone that overheard or saw something will be too afraid to come forward. They will be afraid of either being assaulted themselves or losing time with their families. And once again, DOC employees will say either he was just an inmate or had been in trouble so it was to be expected.I understand, as with everything in life, there will always be two sides to a story. But educate yourself as well. It's no secret and conversations heard on buses and in lines at these facilities have proven that the officers in these facilities not only think these inmates are dumb and worthless, but they see the family members that way too. Maybe this should be a lesson to show us all exactly who the ignorant and uneducated are. We will be there for our families as much as we are allowed to. We will listen and watch and protect our loved ones. Sooner or later, something is going to happen that you can't cover up. Sooner or later it will be seen just how sloppy and lazy a large portion of DOC employees have become at doing their jobs. Laugh and point and look down your nose at these inmates and their families. Just keep the economy in mind. Keep in mind that eventually your poor performance will become visible. If you cannot perform your jobs and do what our tax dollars are paying your salaries to do, then step aside. Let someone that has learned to appreciate a job step in. And weren't these inmates already sentenced in court? What gives these guards the right to continue imposing further punishments? I understand you may not see exactly where I am coming from. I understand you may only see your side or maybe I only see mine. And I apologize if I have jeopardized anything by my comments. But I ask that at the end of the day, when you go home at night and are no longer a DOC employee but a real person, think of what has happened. If you cannot admit it publicly, at least admit it to yourself that there were many mistakes made here. Remember that someone somewhere is missing their son, their father, maybe even just their friend. What if this were you in this position? Do what my tax dollars pay you to do. If you need clarification on your job duties, consult a handbook, a supervisor, or contact HR. STOP THINKING THAT MY TAX DOLLARS GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO PLAY GOD WITH SOMEONE'S LIFE, INMATE OR OTHERWISE. Besides, if your superiors knew of everything you do in the workplace, how many of you would be inmates yourself?

Posted On: Tuesday, Jan. 12 2010 @ 11:38PM

Emil Pulsifer
Emil Pulsifer

A More Sensible Take on the Joe McCarthy Comparison:

Joe McCarthy's scattershot approach was bound to hit an actual Communist agent or two eventually, given how many individuals he falsely accused. He picked victims on political (rather than security) considerations first, then dragged the river to see if the mud wouldn't churn up something, anything, he could use to justify his vendetta; he relied on the propaganda value of the public accusations to ruin victims' reputations and to intimidate other critics, both actual and potential; he relied on innuendo and unsubstantiated speculation. (Does this sound familiar?)

He used hearings the way that Thomas uses the grand jury process: as a one-sided, easily manipulated tool with low standards of evidence and procedure, which gives its user both a forum and (as a means of political camouflage) a specious claim to legitimacy. McCarthy was a smear artist and a coward, and the comparison to Arpaio and Thomas is apt.

From my reply to this letter (Internet comment) in the thread in which it originally appeared:

http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com...

Editor: It wouldn't have taken too much space to include this as a follow-up.

Cathy Drinkwater Better
Cathy Drinkwater Better

_____________________NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PHOENIX POET EDITH BARTHOLOMEUSZPUBLISHES FIRST BOOK

Into the Sun: Selected Haiku and Tanka, Spans the World, a Life

The first collection of haiku and tanka poetry by Phoenix poet Edith Bartholomeusz was released December 1, 2009, by Black Cat Press (BCP) of Eldersburg, MD. Although relatively small, at 5-1/2 by 5 inches, the soft-cover, perfect-bound book contains more than fifty individual haiku and tanka poems, some new and some previously published. An index at the back of the book provides information as to where each of the published poems first appeared.Many of the poems in Bartholomeusz�s new book are accompanied by illustrations by BCP editor and publisher Cathy Drinkwater Better.Haiku is a very short form of Japanese poetry several centuries old. It conveys a momentary experience of nature or the season, spontaneously linked in some way with the human condition, in up to 17 syllables, usually written, in English, in three lines. Tanka is an ancient Japanese form containing up to 31 syllables (usually into five lines when written in English). Traditional topics include love and longing, but have expanded over time to include additional modern themes. Bartholomeusz�s poems are inspired by her time spent in her native Switzerland; as well as her years in Sri Lanka; Zambia; and the U.S., most recently Phoenix, AZ. From the desert saguaro to the seemingly choreographed flight of a flock of starlings, Bartholomeusz is able capture the essence of the life around her in a brief haiku, yet she also can plumb depths of emotion, love, and longing in the mere five lines of a tanka.�Vivid imagery with a moving yet powerful evanescent flair permeates the poems of Edith Bartholomeusz,� noted North Carolinian poet Curtis Dunlap, creator of the popular poetry website Blogging Along Tobacco Road. �Into the Sun is a keeper, a treasure that you will want to share with your friends.�Washington state poet Carole MacRury, author of In the Company of Crows: Haiku and Tanka Between the Tides, described Bartholomeusz�s unique prologue to Into the Sun as, �an ars poetica that offers insights into the patience required to write poems that have been patiently distilled to reveal the purest essence of experience. Edith�s haiku and tanka speak with poignant clarity to the transience of life,� she added. �She looks at the world with a painter�s eyes�sharply focused yet always on the horizon.�Into the Sun illustrator Cathy Drinkwater Better also edited and designed the book. An acclaimed poet in her own right, Better has authored more than 50 books in several genres, including poetry, for a wide range of publishers, including Random House and Broadman & Holman. Formerly the editorial director for Ottenheimer Publishers, a large international book producer, Better currently works as a newspaper editor and columnist and a freelance writer and editor. A successful children�s book author, she has written for a number of well known publishers and franchises, including The Cuddly Beasties� and Sesame Street�. She and her husband, Doug Walker, own Black Cat Press, a subsidy book producer and publisher.Into the Sun: Selected Haiku and Tanka, is currently available exclusively through the author. The retail price is $12.00 postage-paid.

SEE AUTHOR PHOTO, ATTACHED.

For media inquiries or to arrange an interview with the author, contact:

Edith Bartholomeusz directly, by e-mail, at FREDEDITH@aol.com; or

Cathy Drinkwater Better (Walker) at Black Cat Press by phone at 410-795-0703, or by e-mail at cbetter@juno.com.

For information on ordering Into the Sun, contact: Edith Bartholomeusz at FREDEDITH@aol.com.

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