Soldier of misfortune: Please thank Paul Rubin for his in-depth comprehensive report on the heroic life and tragic death of Brian Callan ("Welcome Back, Warrior," November 21). Good people like Brian continue to volunteer to serve in our military in spite of our shameful lack of post-military care. VA hospitals continue to provide inadequate care to the very individuals who place their own lives on the front lines for our sense of freedom. Having been given a full medical disability and discharged with honors, surely at the very least, Brian's progress in civilian life should have been monitored more closely than once every four months. There should be a team of PTSD professionals who dedicate themselves to one-on-one intensive nurturing care. The red flag could not have been waved bigger by Brian. His pleas for help ignored, the red flag turned white. Brian had to surrender to the enemy he could not fight alone.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Liars' club: I know what Derrick Allen has gone through ("Life Interrupted," Robert Nelson, November 21). I was terminated four years ago from the Arizona Department of Corrections with another tainted investigation. I currently have a Maricopa County Superior Court case pending against ADC, with one pending against me by ADC for abusing the whistle-blower statute. ADC filed this case; however, it has chosen not to bring it forward.
Terry Stewart and Charles Ryan are corrupt! They are blinded by their arrogance, and need to know when to hold 'em, fold 'em, walk away or run. Stewart has finally chosen the latter. He needs to run far and fast. Both he and Ryan are a disgrace to law enforcement. I will prove this at my trial.
Stewart and Ryan have targeted employees for termination, then set out to manufacture false evidence against the employees. They reach predetermined conclusions by having their goon squad in internal affairs manipulate the evidence until they get what they want. These so-called "law enforcement officials" intimidate, threaten, extort, bribe and whatever it takes to have their corrupt way with decent hardworking men and women who risk their lives on a daily basis for all of us.
What's equally disturbing is the weak legislators who will not pass meaningful laws to protect those who protect all.
Reign of Error
Not your average Joe: I applaud your continuing exposure of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's unceasing disrespect and disdain for both constitutional principles and concepts of professional law enforcement ("Diary of a Madman, Part 2," Robert Nelson, November 14).
Maricopa County is a growing, modern metropolitan community that deserves the supervision and guidance of a modern, professional law enforcement agency. I find it unacceptable that Sheriff Joe chooses to risk our community's reputation in exchange for shameless self-promotion.
The time for a sheriff who thinks it is acceptable to abuse his authority to intimidate those who disagree with his views has not only passed -- it never arrived.
What has occurred with Nick Tarr and Terry Stewart is no joke. A senior law enforcement official's willingness to quell opinion through intimidation and threat is a concern to all of us. What surprises me is that these actions have not garnered more media attention or greater cries of public disapproval.
Maricopa County deserves much better than Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Informing our community of Sheriff Joe's conduct truly is a public service; keep up the good work.
Name withheld by request
Pro Joe: It appears you only print letters that agree with Robert Nelson's point of view. I answered his previous bag of buffalo bagels regarding the mayor of Fountain Hills' child left in a car in triple-digit weather. You printed six pro letters from misinformed malcontents, but none for Joe. Why?
Now this issue again, you print innuendoes and half-truths. You again bring up the Scott Norberg case. Have you ever witnessed the intake at Madison Street Jail? I have. Have you ever seen a person so high on drugs that he has superhuman strength? Do you realize that a stun gun may not be effective? The money paid to the Norberg family came from an insurance company, not the taxpayers!
Did you ever wonder why they settled so quickly? Could it be just maybe somebody really big is making a lot of money in the drug scene? Why don't you investigate that? As for Tony Ortega's investigation of David Hendershott, Ortega couldn't find a bear in an outhouse. There's an old saying: Put up or shut up. If he was guilty, he would have been gone long ago. You owe Hendershott a public apology.
You have dedicated men serving this community and appreciated by more than 80 percent of the voters and all you want to do is try to make a name for yourself. You may fool some of the people, but the vast majority think you're ludicrous.
John E. Ryon
Editor's note: The previous letter John Ryon refers to was published in the October 3 issue of New Times.
Stupid is as stupid does: Let me start by thanking New Times and all its fine journalists for reporting the news as it is and not what some would have us think. Robert Nelson's columns about the sheriff made me sick and scared at the same time. His closing lines about the way he must treat people in his jails if he treats VIPs the way he does in public is downright scary.
I'm writing in regard to all the problems the sheriff's office seems to be having lately, namely the citing of Joe Arizona on impersonation charges, the attempt to arrest DOC director Terry Stewart for allegedly threatening to kill the sheriff, and the recent $200,000 award to an ex-deputy after firing him for talking to the media about improprieties in the sheriff's office.
Sheriff Arpaio is starting to remind me of Evan Mecham when he was governor of our state. When is Arizona going to wake up and do something to get Sheriff Joe relieved of his duties? Doesn't anybody else see the abuse of his office for his own personal and political gains? I say when Joe Arpaio starts to be an embarrassment to our state, then it's time to put an end to his reign of power, no matter how much good he has done for the sheriff's office.
I say if it looks like Mecham, sounds like Mecham and acts like Mecham, then it must be Joe Arpaio.
Name withheld by request
Joe must go: Joe Arpaio needs to be removed as the sheriff of Maricopa County. He has taken law enforcement to extremes. He is in need of some psychological help and maybe a few months in his own jail would do him some good, but I doubt it.
The man is sick. People who think he is great should try to visit an inmate in one of his jails. The visitors are treated as the prisoners. It is ironic to walk into one of his jails. He has a little marquee that says he is committed to customer service and to enjoy your visit. That has to be one of the biggest lies in the country. He is committed to himself.
Our lawmakers and elected officials must do something to oust him from office -- quickly. He has no business being the sheriff. He is a power-hungry fool and must be removed. Besides that, neither he nor his deputies run the jails, the inmates do.
Sweet relief: I am so weary of Carey Sweet's restaurant reviews. The other week the review was half about Qwest, and this week it is about hay ("The Last Straw," November 14). Why not suggest to her that she review two or three restaurants per column and eliminate the personal, uninteresting drivel that relates not a whit to restaurant reviewing?
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Practical toker: The problem with marijuana is that there is a fine line between use and abuse. Abuse is when it impairs your everyday life. I am not like that.
I am a "secret" pot smoker. I do not smoke every day, but, about once a month, I feel the need to smoke. This in no way impairs my life, therefore I feel like I am not addicted to it, like I am to cigarettes. I could take weed or leave it, and numerous times I have chosen the latter. I know my limits and try not to exceed them. My point is this: I live a happy, healthy, productive life, in spite of my infrequent marijuana use. Just because you smoke pot does not mean you cannot live a productive life. Thank you for bringing the fact that is already known to stoners to the mainstream! (If published, please do not use my name, for the sake of my job.)
Name withheld by request