I’m reading Kimberly Houghton’s front page press on Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s remarks at the Nashua Steak Out and it’s missing something. It is missing dimension. It’s missing well, some facts.
Houghton seems to be obsessed with the term illegal immigrants, inserting it in reference to some of the things the County Sheriff noted as unconventional, when in fact he was referring to the general population of his jail, not just the illegal population.
Arpaio explained that they switched to pink underwear becasue nobody steals it. With the white underwear, when you let them out, you’d find them wearing three or four pair at a time–stealing the taxpayers money. No one steals the pink underwear. But Houghton writes it as if only the illegals are involved, and is he actually taking away their underwear altogether? We have no way to know.
Arpaio said illegal immigrants must be punished by taking away privileges such as white underwear, coffee and R-rated movies. Acknowledging his title as “America’s toughest sheriff,” Arpaio said he is fair.
He is more fair than she is, but you are left with her (or her editors) "interesting" perspective unless you were there and most of the UL’s readers were not.
For the record, the Sheriff’s rules apply to the entire population and he was quite specific in his explanations as to why his policies exist and why they work. He’s not taking away white underwear, they no longer have that option for the reasons mentioned above. And he asks the very important question…why would you show violent movies with rape and murder in them to rapists and murderer’s?
He shows them G rated Disney like movies, and makes them watch the Weather channel, C-span, and the Food Network. It’s a jail. They are criminals. They are being punished, and Joe Arpaio is not interested in providing a country club feel. "The law says they have to have TV, it doesn’t say what they have to watch."
But ughton seems to have entered the event with the idea that illegals are the only criminals in Maricopa county so she is free to preface every remark in that context. He does this to "illegal immigrants" he denies that to "illegal immigrants." And while he probably has a large population of illegal immigrants in his jail, he oversees a county with a population four times that of the entire State of New Hampshire (plus a few more that are there illegally) so Houghton’s remarks are not just wrong they appear intentionally misleading to make some specific point.
That might explain why she then spends the rest of the article on the protesters complaints, after framing the man to more or less justify their objections. We are now almost compelled to believe their claims and ask as they do, why Republicans support him.
We are left with a piece of slanted reporting…that can easily be contradicted by going to the video. And we have the video.
Not long from now, GraniteGrok will post the video of the Sheriff’s remarks–all of them, in context–without editing for journalistic preference. You will be able to see for yourself where he is making a joke, what he means, and why he does what her does. At that point, you may want to ask the Union Leader and Kimberly Houghton, what event she was at, and whom she was reporting on.
One positive point. At least she didn’t call them "undocumented."