This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, July 19, 2016:
As Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke took the stage Monday night at the opening ceremonies of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, the audience expected him to be blunt, precise, and declarative, and he was: “Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to make something very clear. Blue lives matter in America!”
Partisans in the Quicken Loans Arena (left) erupted with sustained applause. They then waited for what came next, and weren’t disappointed: “What we witnessed in Ferguson and Baltimore and Baton Rouge was a collapse of the social order. So many of the actions of the Occupy Movement and Black Lives Matter transcends peaceful protests and violates the code of conduct we rely on — I call it anarchy!”
Compared to other frequent public appearances, Clarke’s remarks were relatively tame. He went on:
Sadly, for a growing number of communities the sense of safety that many of us once took for granted has been shattered. Americans don’t always feel safe, no matter if they are working in a big city, living in a suburb, or rural areas all around his great country. I often tell residents of Milwaukee and cities and towns I visit that safety is a shared endeavor … it is built on a foundation of trust … which at its foundation is the rule of law.
In past public appearances Clarke has said that BLM stands for “Black Lies Matter” — that the group lies about police selectively applying its forces to blacks, that it’s based on hate, and then looks aside when its members and protesters shout “Kill the pigs” and “Fry them like bacon.” He has called them “subhuman creeps,” has called former Attorney General Eric Holder unprintable names, and Al Sharpton a “charlatan.”
Those in attendance who were caught by surprise didn’t read Clarke’s letter published at Fox News Opinion the week before:
Here’s a sobering thought for Americans to contemplate as we now deal with the aftermath of the horrific murders of law enforcement officers in the name of Black Lives Matter in Dallas, Texas: this was mission accomplished for Black Lives Matter, not an aberration.
The violence and hate-filled messages pouring out of Black Lives Matter seek exactly this kind of bloody revolution … [BLM is] one of the most destructive groups … that exists today.
He wrote that even the BLM name is fraudulent: “Black Lives Matter has no more to do with black issues than Students for a Democratic Society [SDS, the pro-communist revolutionary group from the 1960s that was reactivated in 2006] has to do with democracy. They are [a] means to an end … discord, alienation among Americans, rise in hate, and destruction of community bonds.
He urged Americans to take a stand and stop cowering in the face of charges of racism and political incorrectness:
Stand up to Black Lives Matter. Show you don’t kowtow to the liberal pressure exacted to achieve their political goals.… As a law enforcement officer I can tell you this is the time for choosing: law and order, justice, the American Way, or anarchy, division, hate and authoritarianism.
Black Lives Matter has shown their hand in Dallas: they choose the latter.
One of those unprepared for Clarke’s unbending position on BLM was Don Lemon, who hosted the Milwaukee County sheriff on Sunday night on CNN before the convention opened. It was an unfair contest from the beginning. Clarke was loaded for bear while Lemon, who had previously been branded one of the worst journalists in 2014 by the Columbia Journalism Review, tried to soft-shoe it.
Lemon asked about Clarke’s position on the shootings in Baton Rouge, iterating that people from BLM were peaceful. Looking at him in astonishment, Clarke took advantage of the opening: “You don’t believe this for one minute, do you, Don?”
Lemon: Yes, I do. That’s what they said to me….
Clarke: Were there any protests over the deaths of the police officers?
Lemon: I didn’t hear of any.
Readers can only appreciate the virtual verbal dismembering of Lemon by watching the nine-minute video, which has already been viewed almost two million times.
Clarke went on: “I’ve been watching this for two years. I’ve predicted this. This anti-police rhetoric sweeping the country has turned out some hateful things inside of people that are now playing themselves out on the American police officer.”
He called BLM “purveyors of hate,” saying that their ideology was false, that there is no data to support its claims that officers treat black males any more aggressively that white males. He exclaimed: “This anti-cop sentiment from this hateful ideology called Black Lives Matter has fueled this rage against the American police officer!”
Lemon: Sheriff, please, let’s just keep the volume down here. Can we just keep it civil?
Clarke: I’m looking at three dead cops this week, and I’m looking at five last week, and you’re telling me to keep it down? Don, I wish you had that message of civility toward this hateful ideology, these purveyors of hate. That’s what they do. These people preach vile and hate in the name of virtue!
Before Lemon pulled the plug on the interview throughout which he spoke to Clarke in a condescending, almost parental tone, Clarke declared:
There’s only one group in America — one, Don — that truly cares about the lives of black people in these urban ghettos, and it’s the American police officer who goes down there on a daily basis, puts his life on the line to protect who? Black people!
So when you say you we just want to have a conversation … let’s have a conversation about the black-on-black crime which kills more black males … which is more of a threat to any black male in the United States than a law enforcement officer.
Clarke is doing what many Americans wish more law-enforcement officers and others in authority would do: He’s understanding the threat and taking a public stand against it. That’s why the crowd in Cleveland erupted on Monday night when he brought this message to them.