Sheriff David Clarke is not one to mince words, and now he's blaming a lack of presidential leadership for creating an atmosphere where protesters can openly call for the murder of police officers without comment from the White House.
On Judge Jeanine Pirro's show on Fox News, the sheriff directly charged the president for an “open season” on police officers. Clarke's comments follow upon the “execution-style” murder of Deputy Dan Goforth at a Chevron gas station in Texas.
Sheriff Clarke made it clear he was “too pissed off” to sugarcoat what he thought of the situation, saying he was not going to “be diplomatic about what's going on” and he's “not going to stick his head in the sand about it.”
Clarke charged the White House for creating an environment for over-the-top rhetoric and violence against police officers:
“I said last December that war had been declared against the American police officer, led by some high-profile people. One of them coming out of the White House, another one coming out of the U.S. Department of Justice. And it's open season right now, no doubt about it.”
Later in the interview, the sheriff pointed his finger at the president himself:
Clark commented after a question on the lack of leadership facing the issue of attacks on police:
“That's why I said the President of the United States started this 'war on police.'”
Others have raised questions about the president seizing on opportunities to politicize acts of violence against black Americans, while remaining silent on high-profile cases when police officers or non-minority individuals are murdered.
The shooting at WDBJ in Roanoke, Virginia by a disgruntled former employee that had made accusations of racial discrimination against his colleagues has led to widespread national discussion of whether or not the murderer Vester Flanagan (also known on-air as Bryce Williams) should be charged with a hate crime.
“You want a race war? ... BRING IT THEN YOU WHITE…(deleted)!!!” Flanagan wrote in response to the Charleston shooting carried out by white supremacist Dylann Roof, as was reported by ABC News.
Roof was investigated at a federal level for “hate crime” charges in the racially motivated shooting, yet any such case against Flanagan has gone unpursued.
Now, some on Twitter are asking where the White House's response is on Deputy Goforth's shooting:
In a press conference on the shooting, Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman said, "‘We’ve heard black lives matter, all lives matter – well, cops’ lives matter too. So, why don’t we just drop the qualifier and say ‘lives matter’?”
Watch the full Fox News interview of Sheriff David Clarke below: