BALTIMORE (August 25, 2017) – Today, President Trump
pardoned convicted felon, disgraced former sheriff, Joe Arpaio. The NAACP, the
nation’s foremost civil rights organization, released the following statement.
“Joe Arpaio ruled Maricopa County, Arizona with an
iron-fist, under the guise of ‘law and order,’” saidDerrick Johnson, interim
president and CEO of the NAACP. “For decades, Arpaio used fear, cruelty
and tyranny to advance his own political ambitions at the deaths and suffering
of countless people of color.
“Put simply, Arpaio is a remorseless criminal who took the
law into his own hands and enacted racist policing policies. He betrayed his
oaths as a police officer to protect and serve the people of his community.
Arpaio should not have been pardoned.
“On the same night that President Trump has directed the
military to implement his ban on transgender people, his decision to pardon
Arpaio is yet another insult to marginalized voices across our nation. In the
wake of the riot in Charlottesville started by domestic terrorists, neo-Nazis
and white supremacists, Trump has once again shown us his true colors and his
support for racism and violence. By pardoning Arpaio, Trump has endorsed
Arpaio’s abhorrent behavior and has opened the gates for other bigots to follow
in his footsteps.
“We acknowledge that the President has broad powers to
pardon convicted criminals, but providing a presidential pardon should only be
reserved for those who are truly apologetic for their crimes, not those who, if
given the chance, would gladly commit those crimes again. Arpaio’s rule as
Sherriff was cruel and crime ridden, and the NAACP will continue to fight
against people who share his hateful ideologies.”