Thursday, July 9, 2009

Television Appearance on AM Arizona

I just uploaded the full interview on AM Arizona about the book Accidental Felons. You can find it on the index page

I hope that I have an opportunity for more interviews on television. I prefer those over radio phone-in interviews. There's something about talking to actual people face to face that I believe strengthens my message.

Remember that a person goes to prison every 45 minutes from the time the courts open for business until they close after a full days work. Imagine a haggard civil servant, a prosecutor, running from courtroom to courtroom, hair in disarray, sweating, and breathing hard from a day of sprinting between judges. Now multiply this by 350 prosecutors all doing the same thing. This is what Andrew Thomas has done to the courts. It's a travesty that I pray will somehow find its way into the light of public opinion.

If there is one thing that the people of Maricopa County, Arizona are in dire need of, it is a big dose of the facts. I've said it before and I'll say it again, "Andrew Thomas is the most dangerous man in Arizona." He is using the people of Maricopa County as the nails he needs to build himself a political resume. He is literally manufacturing crime by using mandatory minimum sentencing to coerce guilty pleas from ordinary citizens, turning them into violent felons.

That isn't a rant, it is a fact proven by his compulsive abuse of mandatory minimum sentencing. By his actions alone, Arizona has moved from number 9 to number 3 in most dangerous states to live in. He alone drained all defense resources in the state for people accused of capital crimes. No one walking on American soil is more dangerous to the public than this man.

I'm continually brought back to the idea that I expressed two years ago. An idea that is in the book. Removing emotions for a moment and thinking that someone somewhere is actively directing the Maricopa County Attorney to such acts, who would that be? Following the money, it is clear that the big winners in this slaughter of freedom is the For-profit prisons that now are one signature away from controlling the first state ever in America. I cannot help but think that if the county attorney isn't in their payroll in some fashion, they surely must have his portrait on their boardroom wall. He has done for them what no lobbyist, no other politician, and no one inside their executive suites could do. He has broken the back of the state of Arizona's budget with a constant flood of prisoners heading to jail and prisons.

I keep coming back to Rick Romley's flurry of ads in the last election. What does it mean when the last Maricopa County Prosecutor, a prominent Conservative Republican, goes on television to plead with the public to vote for the Democratic challenger to Andrew Thomas. What outraged Romley to the degree he would abandon party loyalty? He is a decorated Vietnam Veteran. A man known for passionate values. When he said that "Andrew Thomas abuses the law," he was telling the truth. Maybe what motivated him to abandon his political party in an election cycle was a deep love for his country and the people in it.

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