Joe Arpaio received a controversial pardon from President Trump on August 27th, which will spare the former Arizona (Maricopa County) sheriff from serving a prison sentence despite charges against his hard-line tactics on illegal immigrants.
From 1992 to 2016, Arpaio faithfully served his duty to Maricopa County and the Arizona-Mexico border, significantly dropping undocumented population in Arizona by almost 35% (Washington Post).
However, a probe was launched at the end of the Bush Administration in 2008 to investigate how Arpaio was handling these immigration cases.
Arpaio was a large vocal supporter of President Trump during the Republican Primary and the Presidential Election in 2016. Trump, in return, expressed praise towards Arpaio for his tough crackdowns on immigration laws.
The President hinted during his “campaign style” rally in Phoenix last week that Arpaio would receive his first official pardon. “I’ll make a prediction,” Trump said in front of a roaring crowd. “I think he’s going to be just fine. I won’t do it tonight because I don’t want to cause any controversy, but Sheriff Joe can feel good.”
For years, Arpaio had been tough on his prisoners, and often, they were humiliated and mistreated. His disturbing practices ranged from dressing male inmates in pink undergarments, making pregnant women give birth while in shackles, and starving his prisoners almost to death.
These treatments were very unprecedented and uncalled for as it abused the human rights of these men and women.
Arpaio was also chastised by many for his racial profiling of Hispanic individuals. Despite the immoral practice, it was an effective method used by Arpaio to round up hundreds of undocumented immigrants.
Though President Obama pressed Arpaio with orders to quit racial profiling, they were defied and ultimately led to Arpaio being prosecuted.
Of course, this move by the President has brought along its share of bad press and controversy. Many on the liberal Left, anti-Trump media, and even some Republicans like Jeff Flake, have gone after President Trump and have repeatedly bashed him for the pardon.
Among those, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has been the largest critic in this case.
“With his pardon of Arpaio, Trump has chosen lawlessness over justice, division over unity, hurt over healing,” the ACLU said in a statement made after the pardon. “Once again, the President has acted in support of illegal, failed immigration enforcement practices that target people of color and have been struck down by the courts. His pardon of Arpaio is a Presidential endorsement of racism."
Arpaio may have been serving the nation in what he thought was in her best interests; however, he did not carry it out in the right manner. Some of the acts committed and the rights that have been infringed on are just despicable to even think about.
Since he took office in January, President Trump has received a mix of my praise and criticisms. Unfortunately, I can not stand behind him on this issue where he is pardoning a man who repeatedly violated the basic human rights of individuals, whether they be legal or illegal.