Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke said that a war has been declared on the American police officer and it’s fueled by the hateful rhetoric of Black Lives Matter.
“That is a separatist movement,” Sheriff Clarke said on fox News. “We’ve gotten away from that in the United States. The American people decided they don’t put up with that crap anymore.”
Clarke has been a longtime critic of the group, whose recent stunts – like interrupting a moment of silence for fallen officers at the Democratic National Convention – underline how incredibly dangerous its ideology can be.
“It’s dangerous, it’s hateful, and I wish the Southern Poverty Law Center would add them to the list of hate groups in America,” Sheriff Clarke said.
He said that the increase in law enforcement officers who have been ambushed or killed in the line of duty can be attributed to the anti-police rhetoric spewed by groups like Black Lives Matter.
“A war has been declared on the American police officer,” he says, “and it’s been fueled by this anti-police sentiment.”
Overnight, a group of 60 organizations representing Black Lives Matter released an “agenda” for their movement. Called “A Vision for Black Lives: Policy Demands for Black Power, Freedom and Justice,” the platform had 50 demands.
Among them are reparations for the descendants of slaves, de-militarization of police and “immediate” release of all people convicted of drug offenses, youth offenses and sex-work related offenses.
The Black Lives Matter movement dates to 2012, but ignited two years later when 18-year-old Michael Brown was fatally shot by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, who is white, on August 9, 2014. The incident — followed by other killings of black men and boys by police in cities including Baltimore and Cleveland, and — sparked racial tensions and weeks of protests that evolved into a national conversation about disparities in policing.
Fueled largely by social media, the movement has grabbed the attention of elected officials, including President Barack Obama — who has invited activists to the White House to discuss their grievances and possible solutions. Their efforts also have forced the issues of criminal justice reform and policing disparities into the 2016 election cycle, and were credited, in part, with the ouster of district attorneys in Illinois and Ohio earlier this year.