Joe Arpaio Pardon Slammed by Anti-Defamation League
President Trump’s decision in August to pardon Joe Arpaio, the former sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, for his conviction on criminal contempt of a federal court order that he refrain from detaining people based on their immigration status has been heavily criticized by various groups. Critics of the pardon view the move as a direct affront to Latinos, who were primarily detained. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which was founded over 100 years ago to fight defamation against Jewish Americans, was one of the first community-based organizations to announce its solidarity with the Latino community. ADL chief executive officer Jonathan A. Greenblatt stated,
President Trump’s pardon of Joe Arpaio defies explanation and flies in the face of American values. We stand today with the Latino community, who have been the primary targets of Arpaio’s bigotry and feel the president’s decision to pardon him particularly acutely.
President Trump’s pardon of Arpaio is certainly questionable, with some people claiming that Trump abused his power to pardon to help Arpaio. Greenblatt also stated,
Arpaio willfully defied a court order for racially profiling Latinos and now is getting away with it — a very dangerous precedent. The pardon will foster divisions in our country at a time when we need healing. No doubt anti-immigrant extremists will celebrate this decision, but it is a sad day for Americans who care about justice, equality and strengthening our social fabric.
Arpaio was certainly saved by the pardon, but the ADL has had its eye on Arpaio for a while. We will have to see if Arpaio manages to stay out of the public’s eye and stay out of further controversy.