Arizona sheriff puts inmates on bread and water for desecrating U.S. flag

Comments (47)
aurum79 wrote:

A jail cell seems like a poor choice for a place to display the U.S. flag. Is being required to view the flag during waking hours part of the punishment and incarceration? Since prisoners lose rights and priveleges, it sounds like a form of punishment. Don’t we want to send a more positive message about America? Should the nations flag be used in this way by the penal system? Would a flag in every prison cell reduce recidivism or improve outcomes, or is it just a reminder of the prisoner’s alienation from the larger culture? Or is the good sherrif just sending a message of hope and inspiration? Should prisoners have hope, or be inspired, or just punished?

Jan 24, 2014 2:43pm EST  --  Report as abuse
oneStarman wrote:

CRUEL and UNUSUAL Punishment as Retribution – GULAG Arizona

Jan 24, 2014 3:00pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Ackthpt wrote:

Americans are idiots, we get it.

Jan 24, 2014 3:13pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Speaker2 wrote:

This sheriff would make a Nazi proud.

Jan 24, 2014 3:14pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Speaker2 wrote:

I can see a 1st amendment lawsuit in his future. What the inmates did can be called freedom of speech.

Jan 24, 2014 3:29pm EST  --  Report as abuse
hawkeye19 wrote:

Put a picture of Eric Holder in each cell and they can pray to their racist god.

Jan 24, 2014 3:30pm EST  --  Report as abuse
WhyMeLord wrote:

Arizona is worse than Gitmo, and God help anybody that lives there.
Travelers passing through there to get to civilization are at risk.
America should build the border fence on the West, North, and East sides of AZ, and leave the South side unfenced, unguarded, and open.
While they’re at it, the same thing should be done to Texas and FL.

Jan 24, 2014 3:55pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Mylena wrote:

This man is doing th job that border patrols did not. those, that right now are claiming because to bread in US still is free. Those guys must be deported inmediately. I am not the want that want to spend taxes giving away food and housing , who the ones that belongs the other side of the border.

Jan 24, 2014 4:01pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Dove33 wrote:

Perhaps the Sheriff was reminding the inmates that they were enjoying the freedoms guaranteed by that flag and that for destroying that symbol, they were distroying the rights they would have enjoyed. For that,I compliment the department and the Sheriff. If you cannot respect that which is offered to you, then you do not deserve to receive it. I’m sure in a lot of countries of the world that what they are getting now, two meals a day (even bread and water), is more than expected.

Jan 24, 2014 4:10pm EST  --  Report as abuse
SunOfTheSun wrote:

He is a hateful evil man, breeding more hate.

Jan 25, 2014 10:51am EST  --  Report as abuse
penny15 wrote:

Obviously they do not feel the same way about the flag as he does but then what do they know about the American flag? Punishing them further will only show them that they have no rights. These people already live in oppression, some by their own doing and others because of circumstance. I do not condone their behavior but neither do I think this is proper way to deal with inmates. Do they even need to be punished? Who are they hurting? It takes someone with an even temper to deal with inmates. I wonder what happens to people that tell him what they think.

Jan 26, 2014 8:56pm EST  --  Report as abuse

Is if the practice of prisons in America to spend taxpayers money for things like American Fags in Jail cells? IMO it would be wiser to spend the money on education and counseling so that the prisoners would be better prepared for integration to the outside world.

Jan 26, 2014 9:07pm EST  --  Report as abuse
plymn wrote:

They are not being punished for they destroying the US flag but that they destroyed government property “[bread and water is].. punishment for destroying government property while in custody…” .

Jan 26, 2014 10:04pm EST  --  Report as abuse
DestorytheDNC wrote:

You know the ACLU will fight for them. Corruption supports corrution!

Jan 26, 2014 10:05pm EST  --  Report as abuse
kriskross wrote:

Really? These are CRIMINALS. Change your thongs people.

Jan 26, 2014 10:14pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Aleks_Black wrote:

I think its a very good metaphor. People are in jail(except for pot) are largely there because they dont know how to follow rules and are disrespectful towards society in general. So there you have. Nothing, inhumane about bread and water. Good work warden.

Jan 26, 2014 10:38pm EST  --  Report as abuse
libertadormg wrote:

The angel of death, Joe Arpaio.

Jan 26, 2014 11:49pm EST  --  Report as abuse
BobHarris wrote:

This guy is a great father to the inmates. And just like any good father, he ingrains in his children a strong desire to leave the nest.

Jan 27, 2014 12:18am EST  --  Report as abuse
BobHarris wrote:

This guy is a great father to the inmates. And just like any good father, he ingrains in his children a strong desire to leave the nest.

Jan 27, 2014 12:19am EST  --  Report as abuse
BobHarris wrote:

This guy is a great father to the inmates. And just like any good father, he ingrains in his children a strong desire to leave the nest.

Jan 27, 2014 12:19am EST  --  Report as abuse
BobHarris wrote:

A father to the inmates. And just like any good father, he ingrains in his children a strong desire to leave the nest.

Jan 27, 2014 12:22am EST  --  Report as abuse
JAWilliams wrote:

My question is, why are American flags being displayed in a jail cell? That also is a desecration of MY flag!

Jan 27, 2014 1:06am EST  --  Report as abuse
GodBlessJoe wrote:

Well thank god that there are law enforcement people who have the balls to do the job like Sheriff Joe does. The world would be a much safer place if other Law Enforcement agencies all over the world would have the intestinal fortitude to stand up to and enforce the laws like they are supposed to be enforced. Go Joe, you are a legend.keep them in pink, feed them on bread and water and don’t let them watch tv either.

Jan 27, 2014 4:58am EST  --  Report as abuse
kunita wrote:

I love this man and think he should be president. I agree with everything he says and does. He would clean up our country. Let him along Obama.

Jan 27, 2014 5:10am EST  --  Report as abuse
kunita wrote:

Love this man. He should be President of United States. He is the only person doing the right thing in this country. Let him alone. You poor people crying for the disrespectful dregs of society. There is nothing inhumane about bread and water. Its more than they deserve.

Jan 27, 2014 5:14am EST  --  Report as abuse
kunita wrote:

Love this man. He should be President of United States. He is the only person doing the right thing in this country. Let him alone. You poor people crying for the disrespectful dregs of society. There is nothing inhumane about bread and water. Its more than they deserve.

Jan 27, 2014 5:14am EST  --  Report as abuse
SerinDeLion wrote:

Look! Attack of the Republitards! God this is why I hate the red states!

Jan 27, 2014 5:54am EST  --  Report as abuse

I’m not sure that most of you get it. The military has in addition to regular laws, the UCMJ, which does have in it, provisions to incarcerate an Enlisted person, and place them on bread and water rations… WITHOUT DUE PROCESS OR EVIDENCIAL PROOF OF GUILT.

Jan 27, 2014 6:37am EST  --  Report as abuse
hamman13 wrote:

Personally, I agree with Arpaio. Desecration of our nation’s flag that represents freedom around the world is a crime that deserves swift and harsh retribution. Being put on bread and water really isn’t that bad. It has everything needed for sustaining life and it is dirt cheap. The bad guys stay alive to keep the human rights activists happy and it allows for the taxes to go somewhere that they will amount to a purpose.

Jan 27, 2014 8:44am EST  --  Report as abuse
hamman13 wrote:

@libertadormg: Angel of death? Really? They will still be alive at the end of this and be perfectly healthy. There is nothing deadly about it.

@Speaker2: It is ILLEGAL on the federal level and on the state level of 48 states. No 1st Amendment lawsuit can be filed successfully. And really. If you don’t like your nation’s flag and your country, THEN LEAVE!

@oneStarman: Gulag? Have you ever seen pictures of a gulag? Go to and type in “Soviet Gulag.” You will quickly realize that the gulag that you are referring to is nothing like our prison system. The prisons we have today are quite nice compared to the gulags of Soviet Russia. Almost luxurious, even.

@Mylena, @Aleks_Black: I totally agree with you guys. If they’re in prison, it is because they did something to get there.

Jan 27, 2014 8:58am EST  --  Report as abuse
jpf1458 wrote:

Keep up the good work Sheriff.

Jan 27, 2014 9:46am EST  --  Report as abuse
Jettero2112 wrote:

Arpiao should be in charge of the US criminal system. All jails should be like in Arizona, not like the country clubs elsewhere in the US. These criminals are in jail and should have little, if any, amenities besides a bed and two squares a day. Prisoners live better than a lot of the poor and homeless in the US. All the extra money spent on these prisoners could be better spent elsewhere. Use the Arpiao model for all US prisons…

Jan 27, 2014 10:04am EST  --  Report as abuse
justjk wrote:

I think that’s great…whats wrong with asking if they are citizens. If they are, it wont bother them, and if they aren’t then they DONT have any rights. As for the inmates that destroyed the flag. I agree it’s harsh to serve them bread and water only…but it sure beats standing in the corner like children. They were idiots for destroying the flag. They deserve a memorable punishment.

Jan 27, 2014 10:46am EST  --  Report as abuse
Animekid117 wrote:

We need more people like him, prisoners need to be punished. Why make them the tax payer’s burden when they can do community service projects as a part of there incarceration and as long as they are given food and water it is not cruel and unusual. Why pamper convicts when you can punish to make sure they never do it again.

Jan 27, 2014 10:49am EST  --  Report as abuse
SilentBob wrote:

Good for him! If they come into our country and can’t follow the laws to begin with and end up in prison and then disrespect our country,..that is suitable punishment! It is the politicly correct comments and “stick up for the criminals” comments that scare me! It seems this country thinks these criminals deserve Lobster, Steak, and Wine. Don’t forget they are there for a reason to begin with! And bread and water isn’t going to kill them in 7 days! Prison isn’t supposed to be an enjoyable experience, and criminal activity inside should be dealt with! And heck yeah an American Prison can display an American Flag if it want’s to THIS IS AFTER ALL AMERICA……Isn’t it?

Jan 27, 2014 10:50am EST  --  Report as abuse
indy63 wrote:

Dan Pochoda, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union in Arizona is less of a person for representing this stance. I agree with what lawman Joe Arpaio is doing. We need to be stern on the criminal so that they learn to act civilized. They need to learn respect! I wished all the prisons and jails would take this step for mankind. We need to start somewhere. Arpaio for president!

Jan 27, 2014 12:35pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Smartguy67 wrote:

What the good Sherrif fails to mention is that alot of his so called prisoners are there for pre trial confinement ie innocent till proven guilty not to mention common sense a flag is a good tool to harm oneself or others with how much do these flags cost as well this guy is a complete nut job who show abuse of power by authoritys

Jan 27, 2014 1:18pm EST  --  Report as abuse
rodster8449 wrote:

If the Feds would do their job, his job would be a lot easier…….

Jan 27, 2014 1:34pm EST  --  Report as abuse
runfast3 wrote:

All I have to say about the good sheriff in Arizona is he should be an instructor in law inforcement. I can promise if every police cheif and every sheriff was to follow his leadership this country would not be in mess it is in.

Jan 27, 2014 2:04pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Chefexpat wrote:

Well as usual the six term freak has done it again, he will be wasting the residents of Maricopa County tax dollars again when the law suits start springing up, I don’t agree on burning the flag, i served my country, I am a U.S. Citizen, but my country is not a third world country where we repress people, but in Sheriff Joe land we do, he is a publicity hound and the only reason he still gets elected is because people are to lazy to vote and he wins by default, when will the people of my state wake up and smell the burning electric fence, and ghet rid of Arpaio, not is he a hate monger he tried by dirty tactics to get rid of his enimies and didnt do day one in tent city.

Jan 27, 2014 3:02pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Richice61 wrote:


Jan 27, 2014 4:05pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Richice61 wrote:


Jan 27, 2014 4:14pm EST  --  Report as abuse
kathadin63 wrote:


US Code
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(1) Whoever knowingly mutilates, defaces, physically defiles, burns, maintains on the floor or ground, or tramples upon any flag of the United States shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.
(2) This subsection does not prohibit any conduct consisting of the disposal of a flag when it has become worn or soiled.
(b) As used in this section, the term “flag of the United States” means any flag of the United States, or any part thereof, made of any substance, of any size, in a form that is commonly displayed.
(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed as indicating an intent on the part of Congress to deprive any State, territory, possession, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico of jurisdiction over any offense over which it would have jurisdiction in the absence of this section.
(1) An appeal may be taken directly to the Supreme Court of the United States from any interlocutory or final judgment, decree, or order issued by a United States district court ruling upon the constitutionality of subsection (a).
(2) The Supreme Court shall, if it has not previously ruled on the question, accept jurisdiction over the appeal and advance on the docket and expedite to the greatest extent possible.

Jan 27, 2014 7:29pm EST  --  Report as abuse
snowwhite4 wrote:

paint the flag on the cell wall and make them clean it if necessary. Flags are costly. Prison isn’t supposed to be fun. It is a place for them to think about their crimes and desire never to return. Prisons anymore are like boot camp with benefits. They can get sex change operations paid for by working citizens. They get steak while minimum wage earners eat Top Ramen. Those men aren’t the boys next door who set off fire crackers at 2 am just for laughs. Those aren’t people who partied much and tried to drive home. Those are people who raped your daughter. Those are people who sold your son his first six months of meth. These men ruined lives.

Jan 28, 2014 2:34am EST  --  Report as abuse
Paft wrote:

So, runfast3, rodster8449, Aleks_blak, Mylena, and all you other Arpaio fans, please explain something to me.

Is this supposed to make these prisoners more patriotic?

If, after being on a starvation diet for a week to ten days, they start treating the flag with “respect,” will it really be because they love the good ol’ USA so very, very much?

Why are people like you so intent on forcing the rest of us into the semblance of patriotism, piety, etc?

Jan 28, 2014 11:25am EST  --  Report as abuse
Edouard01 wrote:

Only in the US could self-dictated lawlessness be done in the name of the flag by a sheriff.

Jan 30, 2014 8:43am EST  --  Report as abuse
wally1727 wrote:

As the good Sheriff once said to his PRISONER population, “If you don’t like it here, don’t come back.” Case closed Attorney General.

Jan 30, 2014 6:00pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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