Sheriff Joe Arpaio, America’s toughest sheriff, is famous for his enforcement of immigration laws and his unusual treatment of prisoners in his Maricopa County, Arizona jails. Now Sheriff Joe is back in the news, thanks to a revolutionary new program combining exercise with entertainment. He calls it “Pedal Vision.” Basically, if you don’t bike, you don’t watch the tube. Noting that female inmates in his jails weren’t getting as much exercise as they might want, he brought in energy-generating stationary bicycles. If you pedal for an hour, you power the television for an hour.
Given how much free time prisoners have, even in Sheriff Joe’s prison camps, it seems like a good solution to the problem of inmate obesity. As the gentleman in the above unrelated picture could attest to, riding a stationary bike gets boring. When I was doing it on a regular basis, I’d read a book or watch television as best I could. It makes the time go faster and distracts the mind from what the body is doing. Now, the prisoners get to trade their toils directly for entertainment, going green in the process!
Image: Sarah Nix
Tags: Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Maricopa County, Arizona, Pedal Vision, prisoners forced to pedal stationary bikes to watch TV, television powered by bicycles, punishments, crime and punishment, prison, exercise