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Arizona sheriff Arpaio puts inmates on starvation diet for destroying U.S. flag

Flags displayed at the National Mall in Washington DC

Flags displayed at the National Mall in Washington DC

ARIZONA – Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been called out by human rights activists for putting prison inmates on a punishing diet of bread and water for desecrating U.S. flags placed in their cells.

Many inmates put the flags in the toilet, ripped them apart and wrote on them.

“These inmates have destroyed the American flag that was placed in their cells. Tearing them, writing on them, stepping on them, throwing them in the toilet, trash or wherever they feel,” Arpaio said in a statement. “It’s a disgrace to those who have fought for our country.”

Arpaio said the punishment was just and that the flags were U.S. government property. The Supreme Court has stated that burning of the flag is a form of protest covered by the first amendment.

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