Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke Jr. recently recorded a radio ad (audio below) in which he tells citizens to take a gun safety course because “calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option.”
In response, a spokesperson for Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said in a statement: “Apparently, Sheriff David Clarke is auditioning for the next ‘Dirty Harry’ movie.”
City Councilman Michael Murphy called Sheriff Clarke’s commercial "irresponsible."
However, Sheriff Clarke defended his ad on CNN’s 'Starting Point' today. He said that there are times when calling the police would be “of no use” (video below), reports Politico.com.
Sheriff Clarke said: “There are certain situations, and I think most people get that, where 911 is going to be of no use. For instance, once the wolf is at the door, once the intruder is inside your home, once you’re on the street and someone sticks a gun in your face to take your car or your wallet, you don’t have the option of calling 911.
“In those situations, there are certain things you can do to protect yourself. It’s a public safety message, and I’m just here to let the people know, give them the information as to what’s going on, and to give them options, if you will, as to how to defend themselves in those situations.”
In the radio ad (audio below) earlier this month, Sheriff Clarke said: “I’m Sheriff David Clarke, and I want to talk to you about something personal…your safety. It’s no longer a spectator sport; I need you in the game, but are you ready? With officers laid-off and furloughed, simply calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option.”
“You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back; but are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so you can defend yourself until we get there. You have a duty to protect yourself and your family. We’re partners now. Can I count on you?”
Sheriff Clarke failed to mention that most murders are not committed by strangers or criminals, but rather by dear family members and friends, according to an FBI report:
In 2010, in incidents of murder for which the relationships of murder victims and offenders were known, 53.0 percent were killed by someone they knew (acquaintance, neighbor, friend, boyfriend, etc.); 24.8 percent of victims were slain by family members. The relationship of murder victims and offenders was unknown in 44.0 percent of murder and non-negligent manslaughter incidents in 2010.