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.