Black Milwaukee sheriff takes on Black Lives Matter movement


MILWAUKEE (Reuters) - David Clarke, the African-American sheriff of Milwaukee County, is a man on a mission - to rebut allegations that U.S. police have been too quick to use deadly force against blacks in a spate of killings from New York to Ferguson, Missouri.

The 38-year law enforcement veteran has become one of the most polarizing black critics of the “Black Lives Matter” movement that grew out of protests against the police killings of unarmed black men, which he describes as anomalies in an otherwise effective criminal justice system.

“My mission right now is defending cops. It’s a full-time mission,” the 59-year-old, cowboy hat-wearing, sheriff said during a recent interview. “I’ve got to defend this profession, because no one else is or very few are.”

Clarke has taken on the national movement in appearances on Fox News and on Twitter, often calling the group “Black Lies Matter,” and labeling its members “subhuman creeps” and calling for the movement’s eradication “from American society.” His stance has drawn the ire of black activists.

“If there was a white sheriff making those statements, they would have demanded his resignation by now,” said Fred Royal, president of the Milwaukee chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

“His remarks have racist overtones to them. He’s in total denial of the condition the average citizen in this community is being subjected to,” Royal said.

Black Lives Matter contends black Americans are more likely to face violence at the hands of police than their white counterparts. A 2015 study by Britain’s Guardian newspaper found that U.S. blacks were killed by police at a rate roughly 2.5 times higher than whites.

Clarke, who joined the Milwaukee Police Department as a patrol officer in 1978 and was appointed county sheriff in 2002, is unmoved by such criticism.

“It’s not going to work with me,” Clarke said. “I’m on the side of the law-abiding public. I’m on the side of victims of crime.”


Clarke’s tough-talking stance has resonated with voters both inside Milwaukee, one of the nation’s poorest and most segregated cities, and in the more affluent suburbs, which have lower crime rates.

He has won four elections as sheriff with more than 70 percent of the vote in Milwaukee County, where 65 percent of the population is white. In the city, which is 39 percent black and 63 percent minority, he won 80 percent of the vote in 2014.

Clarke has run as a Democrat to the dismay of state Democratic leaders. He declined to say whether he was interested in running for higher office.

“The things that Sheriff Clarke says are not only truthful, but people are shocked to hear it come out of the mouth of a black man,” said County Board Supervisor Deanna Alexander, a white supporter of Clarke.

Long before the Black Lives Matter movement rose to prominence, Clarke was known for admonishing residents of Milwaukee’s inner city to take responsibility for their lives and take up arms to defend themselves against criminals.

“The heavy lifting has to be done by the individual and not government,” Clarke said. “Government does not put enough pressure on people.”

While Clarke has strong views regarding the residents of Milwaukee’s inner city, his department does not have primary responsibility for policing their streets, a job performed by the city police department. The sheriff’s department patrols highways, provides security at the airport and on county land and oversees the county jail system.

That fact is not lost on Clarke’s rivals.

“Even though he tries to play one on TV, he is not a street cop,” said Angela Walker, a Black Lives Matter member who is black and ran against him in 2014. “He’s an administrator.”



The person in this article is wrong. A quick search finds a bio. He spent the first eleven years as a patrol officer. He has an impressive resume. Would that more intelligent young black men decide early in life that they will not only be law abiding, but actually stand up and defend the innocent. If BLM wanted to change law enforcement for the better, the opportunity is wide open to do so, but it will not be done by shouting or carrying signs. Even civilian oversight has downsides and is of limited usefulness. Instead of demonizing police, they should be encouraging people of integrity among their base of support to get into the field.


His remarks do not have racial overtones to them, as has been suggested. If he were a white person making that remark about blacks in general, then the racism would be apparent enough. As a black man making remarks about a political movement that ihas had racial overtones to it, the only thing that can be said against this sheriff is that he is not a marshmallow.


Our local weekly, SHEPHERD EXPRESS, has run many articles that detail the extreme right wing agendas of Sheriff Clark.
The reasons that this pseudo-democrat gets re-elected are that the Republicans in Milwaukee share his conservative philosophy,
and that the African-American community is reluctant to dis-employ a black man who has a real job (something that’s very hard to come by for such men in Milwaukee.)


Milwaukee isn’t far from Chicago; for the sake of comparison.


Thinking upon the underlined.


Milwaukee is well known as one of the most racially segregated cites in the US as well as the one with the HIGHEST incarceration rate for African-American men.


It is unclear what your point is in bringing this up (I do agree with you that Milwaukee is well known as one of the most racially segregated cities in the US).

Is it your point that it is good what Sheriff Clark is doing? It does appear that someone who is African-American is finally standing up for what is in the best interest of African-Americans - to be treated as someone that is not identified first by the color of their skin.


Black Lives Matter has allowed themselves (like other activist groups) to be defined and steam-rolled by elitist and elite-wannabe progressive idealism and terrible tactics that have largely turned the public against them.

Furthermore, they are not interested in having serious conversation as we saw with how they treated Senator Sanders. They just want to project outrage and protest in all too many cases.

They have also shown no interest in Black on Black crime or the abortion of minority babies.

One poll showed that nearly 7 in 10 Blacks could not identify with BLM.

I have to agree with Sheriff Clarke that seems to be about turnout for the DNC.


I have no doubt that a Wisconsin newspaper would seek to derail someone like Sheriff Clarke. :rolleyes:…even if it would be racist by certain progressive standards.

Also, am I to understand that being pro-gun rights, pro-marriage, pro-religious liberty and pro-right to life is “an extreme right wing agenda”? :ehh:


Sheriff Clarke is doing no such thing. Please read this article:\


Here is what Mr. Clarke is all about:


I was lost on the title, A Sheriff from our Racist Past. If I wanted opinions, there are plenty here, especially from a site that does not the difference between a blog and news.


That’s a terrible, slanted article.

The idea that BLM is about civil rights is largely a joke. Those protesters and their liberal allies wouldn’t last 5 minutes in a Civil Rights era protest. They protest because it’s safe, cool :cool:, easy and Democratic Party-endorsed. No dogs. No fire houses, Very little to no documented police brutality.

And it’s hilarious to call a African-American sheriff a pro-Jim Crow guy.

Clearly, it’s nothing more than a progressive hit job that of course couldn’t be published without taking a shot a FOX NEWS.


That’s not what he’s about at all.

And why wasn’t my question answered?


God bless this man for standing up to criticism! He sees what I see; tons of promise, tons of possibility, and an unfortunate amount of it used to just cry for more government aid and “equality”. Things are equal - You have to pull your own weight, though! White, black, whatever; you can’t free-load all your life and expect the best of everything. God bless all those who are fighting for a better life, not an easier one.


From the article:

“Before long, Black Lies Matter”—the sheriff’s clever twisting of the slogan—“will join forces with ISIS to bring down our legal, constituted republic. You heard it here first.” And, “I have been right on every call I have made about these subversives. I will be right again.”


Unfortunately, ISIS flags have been seen in some protests in the US.


I started to…until they started to slant their opinions so skewed to the left that I couldn’t trust a single thing they have to say about anything. Do you have a legitimate news source? If so, I’d be willing to give that a chance at discerning the real story here.


is there documentation that ISIS Flags have been flown at black lives matter protests?

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