A furious Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Monday slammed Black Lives Matter in response to the recent surge of urban violence, saying that “they’re not about Black Lives.”
“Every black life matters. Black Lives Matter? They’re not about Black lives,” said the Republican Patrick on Fox News. “Where were they when Black cops were being killed? Where were they when Black teenagers and kids were being killed over the weekend in Chicago and other Democrat-run cities? They don’t care.”
The highly decentralized Black Lives Matter movement has come under criticism for its lack of response to weeks of increased violence in predominantly Black communities, including those in Atlanta, Chicago and New York City, versus the mass protests and rioting that broke out after the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
Others have countered that the movement’s focus is combating police brutality and excessive use of force by slashing police budgets, then diverting funds to social-service programs aimed at reducing poverty in minority communities.
Over the weekend, 35 people were shot in New York City, and a one-year-old boy, Davell Gardner Jr., was killed Sunday night at a barbecue in Brooklyn as he sat in a stroller, according to CBS2 New York.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who helped paint “Black Lives Matter” last week on Fifth Avenue, said he was “heartbroken” by the baby’s death. The city recently agreed to cut $1 billion from the police department’s $6 billion budget after calls by activists to defund the police.
Mr. Patrick made his comments after two police officers were shot and killed Friday in McAllen, Texas, by a suspect who then turned his gun on himself. The officers were Edelmiro Garza, 45, and Ismael Chavez, 39.
“There’s a difference between every Black life matters, which it does—and by the way, every police officer’s life matters,” said Mr. Patrick. “We’re human beings. All of our lives matter.”
Two Black officers—Federal Protective Service officer Dave Patrick Underwood, 53, and retired St. Louis police Capt. David Dorn, 77—were shot and killed during the protests, some of which devolved into nighttime looting and rioting.