Campaign to Shut Down Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona: MCSO's missing press release, and the siege of the Wells Fargo bank building.
New Times Phoenix
MCSO's missing press release, and the siege of the Wells Fargo bank building.
Sat Aug 30, 2008 at 02:05:31 PM
Feathered Bastard [column] by Stephen Lemons
Beginning Tuesday, Sal Reza will be giving Wells
If you haven't heard yet, you will soon. Beginning September 2, and continuing on a daily basis Monday though Friday, 11am to 1pm, protesters will begin to converge on the Well Fargo building at
According to the lease agreement, currently,
This Siege of Arpaio is brought to us by local pro-immigrant activist Sal Reza's organization PUENTE, as well as the LA-based National Day Laborer Organizing Network. The object is to target not only Arpaio, but also Wells Fargo, encouraging them to evict Arpaio from their building as a tenant.
"By harboring and profiting from the Sheriff’s presence in the
The protests, which will undoubtedly rival a similar action at M.D. Pruitt's furniture store in
The siege is an intriguing idea, one that gives people a venue to vent their frustration and rage at Sheriff Joe's arrests of corn vendors and gardeners, and his trampling on the civil rights undocumented and documented workers alike. In this most recent raid on a Mesa landscaping business , Joe's thugs zip-tied at least one citizen, as well as legal and illegal aliens alike. Essentially, he arrested everyone first and sorted it out later.
The raid was done early in the morning, using the authority of the federal government in the form of MCSO's 287g agreement with ICE. Parents were hauled away, likely to be deported. Families were eradicated. Some children may never see their parents again. The anger and outrage at these injustices must be demonstrated. To do nothing is unconscionable. But where do folks gather to express their moral indignation? Now people will have a place where they, and others from outside
The protests are sure to cause the MCSO a great deal of nervousness, and impose a bunker mentality upon Joe and the boys. Already they are second-guessing themselves. The MCSO's PR machine posted a press release on August 26 denouncing the planned protests, but if you now go to MCSO's Web site, you can no longer access this "news brief." I suspect this is because the release itself is alarmist in tone. (You can check out the entire document, here.)
"These people did the same thing when they protested against the Pruitt Furniture Company [sic]," Arpaio said in the missing press release. "They have no respect for private business and could care less if their political agenda disrupts private citizens or businesses."
The statement continues on to read:
"Pruitt's Furniture suffered a near year long disruption by many of these same protestors which badly hurt their business. The city of
"The activists plan on two hour long protests around the Wells
Sorry, Jack. We still live in
There's another reason raising the specter of a Pruitt's-like showdown is unwise on MCSO's part. That protest dragged out for months, and was ultimately successful for the pro-immigrant forces. Pruitt's owner Roger Sensing stopped using off-duty Sheriff's deputies to guard his property while MCSO patrol vehicles terrified that neighborhood. Could the MCSO be concerned that Well Fargo will be unhappy with having their property turn into a barricaded war zone because of MCSO overreaction?
The MCSO does not deal well with crowds, and I suspect that the Phoenix PD will stay out of the situation. Can the MCSO contain itself as it's derided and mercilessly jeered on its own turf? Stay tuned next week, as the Siege of the Sheriff commences.
National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights
Red Nacional Pro Derechos Inmigrantes y Refugiados
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