Help Stop the Suffering in Maricopa County
The message below went out on Saturday, June 23, 2012 to Standing on the Side of Love supporters. You can sign-up for these emails here.
“Is Sheriff Joe afraid that the Unitarian Universalists leading the demonstration will pray those jail doors open?”
–Stephen Lemons, writing for the Phoenix New Times
Tonight: Tent City. Thousands strong, we will lift our voices against the inhumane conditions at this place that Sheriff Joe Arpaio himself calls a “concentration camp.” What is Sheriff Arpaio’s response to our peaceful candlelight vigil at Tent City? To put Maricopa County jails on lockdown, and prevent inmates from receiving visits from friends or family for 24 hours. Indeed, Arpaio plans to punish those who are already subjugated.
Friends—it’s time for us to raise our voices together, all across the country, and demand, unequivocally, that the federal government Shut Down Tent City! Tent City represents the worst of a culture of cruelty perpetrated in the name of the U.S. government and is a shameful component of the federal system of mass detention and deportation. Help us shine a light on these egregious human rights abuses here in Arizona and across the nation!
Please join us in calling on President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano to end the culture of cruelty by placing the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office under receivership, closing of Tent City, and cutting off all ICE powers from Maricopa County.
Click here to send your message.
Today, UUA President Rev. Peter Morales will join a delegation that is touring Tent City—special guests of Sheriff Arpaio. I am not optimistic that any dialogue between human rights observers and Arpaio will lead to positive change, though I am glad for the opportunity our denomination and others have to bear witness, even if it is only one more “media hit” for the Sheriff.
No matter what—tonight, thousands of us will protest the grotesque, unconstitutional conditions at this jail that have been allowed to go unchecked for far too long. We will lift our voices and demand a cessation to the cruelty perpetuated in Maricopa County. Never was a truer rallying cry than Arrest Arpaio, Not the People!
Join us! Click here to send your message urging a shut-down of Tent City.
“They’re not going to stop me with their little demonstration,” Sheriff Arpaio told the Arizona media about our Puente-UUA demonstration at Tent City. Maybe not today, Sheriff. Maybe not tomorrow. But we will stop you. The bending arc of justice will stop accommodating you. People of conscience and good will expose you. We will replace your cruelty with calls for compassion, faith in a better America, family first, and freedom for all who seek basic life, liberty, and happiness.
May Justice Prevail.
Standing on the Side of Love