Part 1: A Western View of the Media’s No. 1 Show, Sheriff Joe Arpaio



Recently I was asked to comment on the trial of Arizona’s Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is currently on trial, along with his sheriff’s office, for alleged civil rights violations against Latino residents of the 9200 square mile central Arizona county. From my perspective as a transplanted Southwesterner in the heart of the American Midwest in Iowa City, the Sheriff Joe Show would have been a number one show for Paddy Chayefsky’s imaginary media conglomerate UBS’s creative directors in the award winning film, “Network.” The Teflon Sheriff has captured the imaganation, celebration and vilification of editors, bloggers, citizens, and the media for two decades but continues to enjoy huge support in Maricopa County, one of America’s Sunbelt hotspots for crime, economic depression, human smuggling, drug trafficking, and labor explotation.

Part one of my three part series on Sheriff Joe Arapio, the trial, media, and my perspective on American immigration policy since 1965, was published today in the Iowa City Press-Citizen. I believe this coversation is at the core of our national politics, the November presidential election, and our future as a nation. My perspective begins with my childhood growing up in Los Angeles, is shaped by a life lived on both coasts, the Southwest, and now today, in the heart of our nation, Iowa, where immigration from all corners of the globe have and continue to shape this agricultural eden since the first emmigrant’s plow broke its prairie soil in the early nineteenth century.

Below is the link to the story in today’s Iowa City Press-Citizen:


Sustainable Plan Key to Eastern Iowa Future

Johnson County, Iowa and its eleven cities are a key part of Eastern Iowa’s future growth. This fall there are numerous municipal elections being held to determine key leadership in urban, suburban, exurban and rural planning and zoning, economic growth, educational initiatives, transportation integration, and sustainable environmental practices. I believe we should look to the Southwest and the Sunbelt for some good examples of how rapid growth can outpace boosterism and lack of urban planning can leave a community wondering how it changed so much so fast.

JohnsonCountyNew Urbanism should look West for success, failure

Written by
Stuart Rosebrook | Writers’ Group

Each day I enjoy the early morning hours of my neighborhood in University Heights. I listen to the quiet awakening of our city and community. I can hear the hum of the highway, an early flight at the airport, and a distant horn of a freight train as it slips through town. Closer to home, neighbors walk their dogs, commute to work by car or bicycle, and the first teachers arrive at the local school to start the day.

Since June, I have followed the ongoing debate between councils and residents, supervisors and civic leaders. Every day I read about a new debate: Eastside vs. Westside; Coralville vs. Sycamore Mall; county growth vs. farmland preservation; church vs. condos; autos vs. bikes; neighborhoods vs. tailgaters; levee or no levee; bridge or no bridge. Surprisingly, only 5 percent of Iowa City residents voted for their city council in the recent primary. For such an active and educated community, this would appear apathetic, at best; cynical, at its worst.

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