Friday, March 28, 2003

Gen. Joe Arpaio unveils his arsenal

The day before the press conference where he would show off his latest counter-terrorism gadgets, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio launched a pre-emptive strike against those in the media who might consider making light of his endeavor. In other words, me. "There will be some who will try to make a joke out of it," he told me Tuesday, "which is awful. Because to make a joke out of what my office is trying to do to protect people against terrorism is awful. It's not funny." And of course he's correct. There is nothing funny about the sheriff's attempt to protect county residents from terrorism. Except, maybe, the 50-caliber belt-fed machine gun for which he paid $12,000. That's a little funny."This piece of equipment is unique," Arpaio said in a press release announcing the purchase. "It's the ultimate machine gun. It's law enforcement's insurance policy. If any terrorist action comes to our attention, this weapon can counter it." Since terrorists tend not to announce their intentions beforehand, I wondered what type of action might come to the sheriff's attention ... Read the rest of the article.

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