What the hell has gotten into Prensa Hispana, the Spanish language freebie you always see in racks at Mexican restaurants and grocery stores? In today's March 25th edition, and teased on the cover, is a full-page puff piece on MCSO Deputy Chief Paul Chagolla, the much-despised former flack for Sheriff Joe Arpaio who was finally kicked upstairs with a promotion in December. (Check out a PDF of the article, here.)
For real, Chagolla is one of the worst public information officers I've ever dealt with while working for the New Times. (A pinche cabron, if you get my drift.) Even when you tried to be civil with the guy, he was insulting, rude, and hateful. In other words, he had all the sophistication of a drooling wart hog. So he was never any good at his stated job -- rationalizing the MCSO's many misdeeds -- particularly the department's campaign against the Hispanic community in Maricopa County.
And here he is being praised to the high heavens as a shining example of Hispanic achievement, by a paper that serves the Phoenix immigrant community, no less.
Well, score one for Lisa Allen, or whoever it was in the sheriff's bloated PR department who pulled off this massive, Spanish-language bj. I know that the MCSO has been attempting "outreach" to the Hispanic community in the wake of all the negative press they're getting related to the sweeps and raids they do, not to mention breaking Hispanic housemoms' arms or separating them from their children. The MCSO now has a Hispanic female deputy designated as their liaison to Latinos. Must be paying off for them.
Still, Prensa Hispana should be ashamed of itself. I called the paper's founder Manny Garcia to ask why they would write up a Hispanic Judas like Chagolla, but I haven't gotten a call back yet.
I called up Phoenix civil rights activist and attorney Antonio Bustamante, to ask him to read the piece online so he could comment on it. It sure looked like Prensa Hispana pulled out the knee-pads for Chagolla, but maybe something was lost in translation.
For instance, do they even ask Chagolla about racial profiling?
"Hell, no," said Bustamante emphatically. "You'd think this guy was running a ministry. It's hogwash. It's not a fair expose of this guy and what he's about."
At one point, Chagolla is quoted as saying, "In our hearts, we know what is good and what is wrong." Wow, I had no idea Chagolla was so sensitive. Wonder if he weeps secret tears for every immigrant family broken apart by Arpaio's 287(g)-empowered goons?
"His parents were first-generation Mexican immigrants," noted Bustamante. "He doesn't say whether they got here legally. But he sure does everything in his power to persecute such immigrants, or work for a sheriff that does."
Interestingly, on the front page along with the tease of the Chagolla article is a tease about Cesar Chavez Day coming up on March 31 with the header, "Viva Cesar Chavez!" Talk about irony.
"Cesar Chavez would roll over in his grave knowing his on the same page as this guy," observed Bustamante. "This is the kind of guy who would have gone after Cesar, the kind of guy who did go after him during Cesar's long career."
Bustamante continued, "For this piece to be written about a villain to the very population that reads this paper is profane."
After talking to Bustamante, I gave some thought to some headlines and stories you could be reading in Prensa Hispana in the future, assuming Prensa Hispana continues in this same editorial vein of MCSO bootlicking. Here they are, presented for your amusement. Sorry my Espanol ain't good enough for me to write 'em in the proper tongue.
Joe Arpaio's Favorite Color Is Brown, Just Look at MCSO's Uniforms!
PIO Lisa Allen -- the Secret Mexican.
Ski Masks: They're Not Just for Rapists Anymore
How to Break a Hispanic Housemom's Arm in Three Easy Steps
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Guadalupe's Mayor Frankie Montiel: Baskstabbing for Beginners
Constitutional Rights? What Do You Think This Is, Honduras?
Joe Arpaio Isn't Racist, He Treats All Brown People Like Crap...