UK home secretary Priti Patel has sparked backlash on social media after she told LBC on Friday people taking the knee at Black Lives Matter protests were "dreadful".
Speaking to Nick Ferrari, she was asked whether she would 'take the knee' to back those joining in the protests.
"No I would not, I would not have at the time either. There are other ways in which people can express their opinions. Protesting in the way which people did last summer was not the right way at all," she said.
She added last year's protests were "quite a moment" and had put numerous police forces "under a great deal of pressure".
"We saw statues being brought down and some councils making, quite frankly, a stance around statues and street names. There are other ways in which those discussions can take place and, also, quite frankly I didn't support that attempt to re-write history. I felt that that was wrong," she said.
When asked what she thought of the protests last summer, she said: “Those protests were dreadful”.
The comments sparked both anger and support for the British Home Secretary, with some criticising Priti's history of making insensitive remarks, stating: "Priti Patel woke up this morning and decided to embarrass herself. Again."
— stphn 🫒 (@stphnmaycock) February 12, 2021
Some decided to slag off Patel for her lack of Union Jack flags. "Priti Patel could only manage a union flag on each shoulder. A poor showing indeed," one person tweeted.
— Moog (@a_toots) February 12, 2021
But others voiced solidarity with the British Home Secretary and defended her comments.
— Andrea Jenkyns MP (@andreajenkyns) February 12, 2021
Media Gaffes On BLM Protests, Rallies
Patel's comments come after several gaffes from British ministers, namely after UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab said in an interview he would not "take a knee" to support the movement, adding the rallies were a "matter of personal choice".
"I take the knee for two people; the Queen and the Mrs when I asked her to marry me," he said in a TalkRadio interview in June last year, adding the show of solidarity had been "taken from The Game of Thrones".
The LBC axed former UKIP and Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage's show after he accused BLM supporters of "cultural Marxism" after demonstrators toppled a statue of Italian explorer Christopher Columbus in Virginia last year.
"This is cultural Marxism and they will do their best to eradicate anything and everything they dislike. If you think in this country they'll end with statues that are linked to slavery, you've no idea what is coming, unless somebody at the top of this country actually has the moral courage to stand up and say, 'this is ridiculous'," he said at the time.
The news comes after hundreds of thousands joined global BLM protests after George Floyd was killed by police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota on 25 May last year.
BLM rallies erupted in the United States and United Kingdom, but later spread globally. Protests were largely peaceful, but some clashed with police and tore down numerous statues, including one of former slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol.