Singing protesters rile sheriff

Dec. 2, 2009 at 12:43 AM
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TEMPE, Ariz., Dec. 2 (UPI) -- Controversial Phoenix-area Sheriff Joe Arpaio stopped talking and left when protesters at Arizona State University began singing a protest song.

The group interrupted a panel discussion Monday in which journalism professors questioned Arpaio, The Arizona Republic reported. Before the event, opponents and supporters of the Maricopa County sheriff demonstrated outside.

During his tenure, Arpaio has become a national figure, known for making jail inmates wear pink underwear and eat a tasteless, although nutritious, loaf as a punishment. More recently, he has become even better known for his hard line on illegal immigrants.

The singing protesters adapted a Freddy Mercury song, "Bohemian Rhapsody," an alternative newspaper, Phoenix New Times, reported.

One verse went: "Is this legitimate? Is this atrocity? Caught up in politics. No sense of reality. Open your eyes. Look down to the south and see ... . The border stops brown folks, they cannot cross the line. But it's easy come, easy go, for the rich, 'n' their cargo. Anyway the migrants flow, doesn't really matter to me ... ."

The event was supposed to last for an hour, but Arpaio took off 15 minutes early.

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