Arizona Newspaper: By Pardoning Joe Arpaio, Trump Has Made It Clear That Institutional Racism Is His Goal

From the editorial board of the Arizona Republic:

While America was talking about tearing down monuments that offend historically oppressed people, Donald Trump effectively erected yet another one. His pardon of Joe Arpaio elevated the disgraced former Maricopa County sheriff to monument status among the immigration hardliners and nationalists in Trump’s base.

This erases any doubt about whether Trump meant to empower them after the violence in Charlottesville. Arpaio is their darling. Arpaio is now back on his pedestal thanks to their president. Many hoped Trump would decide to become the president of all the people.

But Trump spent last week demonstrating that he wants to be president of the few. By pardoning Arpaio, Trump made it clear that institutional racism is not just OK with him. It is a goal. That should trouble every American who believes that our duty as a nation is to continue working on behalf of equal justice.