Arizona Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu has been a rather outspoken law enforcement officer when it comes to illegal immigration and drug running. He’s received several decorations and honors during his career in law enforcement including Sheriff of the Year. His county is one that is most plagued by human-drug smuggling by the Mexican drug cartels so much so that in Pinal County, Arizona there are men who work for the cartels sitting atop hills watching armed with guns and communication devices. Some areas of the county have become very dangerous and people have been advised to avoid them. Babeu recently announce a bid for Congress and he’s also been workiing as co-chair of the Romney campaingn in Arizona. But this past weekend the sheriff’s reputaiton and image were tarnished when he admitted publically that he’s gay and he has a love relationship with a Mexican national who is in the US legally named Jose.
Jose is now alleging that Babeu threatened to have him deported if he ever told anyone about their gay relationship. This has resulted in a lot of controversy now and some of those, like Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who have strongly supported him are now distancing themselves from him and withdrawing their support for his congressional bid. Today Babeu announced that Arizona Attorney General Tom Horn has agreed to investigate Babeu and the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office for any wrong doing. Babeu himself requested the investigation in order to clear his name.
Amid all this growing controversy surrounding the sheriff are allegations that he has mand “inappropriate gay comments” on social media sites and that he’s even posted pictures of himself shirtless and in his underwear on Facebook and elsewhere. This is all not going over well in Pinal County where he’s sheriff as that county is a very rural and conservative county. Arizona in general is a conservative state as well.
According to press reports this Jose fellow was a volunteer for the Romney campaign in Arizona and that is how Babeu met him. Babeu resigned this past Monday as AZ co-chair for the Romney campaign and Romney has welcomed the resignation. I have some suspicions about the timing of all this. Why has Jose chosen to come forward with his allegations at this time? Is it to smear the name of Babeu? Is it an attempt to derail his bid for Congress? Is it just another personal vendetta? Is it an effort by Jose and some unknown backers to put the spotlight on Babeu and allege that he’s a racist bigot who hates Mexicans? I suspect one of these is the motivation for Jose coming forward at this time.
In all honesty I couldn’t care less if Babeu is gay or not. That has no bearing on the man’s work and achievements in law enforcement in my opinion. Being gay does not make one less than he or she is. It should not diminish one’s abilities, talents, and achievements. But Babeu’s homosexuality seems to be the growing focus now in the media and there appears to be an effort now underway to demonize him for being gay. That is not right or just. The man’s sexuality is his own business. But, as I said earlier, Arizona is a conservative state and, sadly, Arizona has not been all welcoming when it comes to gay people or gay rights. In fact, many gay people living in Arizona feel as if they are treated as second class citizens and many believe they’ve been outright discriminated against because of their homosexuality.
Babeu has denied any wrongdoing in this affair and he himself has been the first to call for a public and formal investigation into Jose’s allegations. Not exactly the behavior of a man guilty of threatening someone. Especially a man with a badge. I suspect Jose’s allegations are false and there is some unseen motive behind them and the timing. I cannot help but wonder if Jose is backed b pro-immigration advocates who, at this point, are non-public.
Whatever the case I don’t support illegal immigration. Our nation has laws and legal ways to enter our country and those laws must be followed by those wanting to enter into our country. If they come illegally then they’ve broken the law and should pay the consequences of their law breaking. No that does not make me a traitor to my race or to my Mexican/Hispanic roots. What it does make me is a law abiding American! But that’s another issue which I’m not going to get into right now because the whole issue of illegal immigration is a hornet’s nest.
I admire Sheriff Babeu for his forthrightness this past Saturday when he admitted at a press conference in Florence, AZ that he was gay. I also admire him for maning up to the allegations and calling for an investigation into them to set the record straight. One thing that does bother me although is what the Sheriff had to say Saturday about his history as a gay man. Apparently his homosexuality has been held over his head many times in his life by those trying to force him to do something or shut up. Yes it’s blackmail and many gay males know all about that routine. It goes something like this: “Either you do what I say or I’ll tell everyone you’re gay.” Again, that’s unjust and not right but people can be cruel and when people find out someone is gay and they don’t want it made public, cruel people tend to use it to blackmail gay men and women especially if they are in postions of power and influence.
As I said earlier. I do not belief the allegations Jose is making against Sheriff Babeu whom I have found to be an upstanding and honest human being. What the man does in his bedroom should not be a matter of public record or debate unless he really has done something to break the law which I doubt he has. Babeu has always struck me as a man with morals and values. I cannot envision him threatening anyone. He’s just not the type. IF Babeu did threaten to deport Jose if he ever told anyone about their gay affair then I will be the first to be surprised. I think all this is a smear campaign to ruin and tarnish a man who has done much as a leader and as a law enforcement officer to make not only his county but our state and country safer. This is not the first time we’ve seen something like this and I’m sure it won’t be the last, sadly.
If you want to know more about this story please see the following articles on it–
Be sure and watch the CNN report video on the below link. Apparently Babeu and Jose have had an on again, off again relationship since 2008 and Jose caught Babeu “cheating” on him several times. Their relationship finally went soar and Babeu and Jose broke up for good. Is this nothing more than an attempt at revenge by a spurned lover? Most likely in my opinion.