Punked: Texas Lt. Gov. Unveils Artwork Saying ‘Abolish ICE’

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R-TX) in photo reversed to show "ABOLISH ICE" hidden in painting ("ICE" can be seen in the inset, in light blue).


(Image: Photo courtesy of Serlesi Olguin.)

On Monday, Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick grinned while unveiling a painting at a Tea Party event in Tarrant County, to the applause of attendees. What they didn’t appear to realize was that the painting contained the words “Abolish ICE.”

The prankster, a 17-year-old high school student named Caleb Brock, explained to TYT how he pulled off the caper, which was captured on video provided to TYT.

Caleb Brock presents Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R-TX) with artwork in photo reversed to show hidden message of "ABOLISH ICE."

(Photos courtesy of Serlesi Olguin.)

“I went in and pretended to be a huge fan of Dan Patrick, showed it to some Tea Party people with name badges, and talked to his security, then some lady who I assume had a place on his staff. Then he came in and I stopped him and told him I saw him speak at Texas Boys State and I was so inspired and that I wanted him to run in 2020. Then I showed him the painting. He loved it so much he wanted to bring me on stage.”

Brock, who’s a senior at Guyer High School in Denton, Texas, said he was motivated by what he sees as Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) inhumane policies and Lt. Gov. Patrick’s refusal to speak out against them.

“ICE has committed horrible atrocities. There is no accountability for the sexual assaults committed in immigration detention centers. Treatment of people in ICE detention centers is inhumane. The administration dehumanizes people seeking better lives,” Brock said.

In February, it was reported that the Department of Health and Human Services had received over 4,500 complaints of sexual abuse against unaccompanied minors since 2014.

“Dan Patrick and any official who refuses to speak out against ICE’s injustices are complicit in these crimes,” Brock said.

Patrick, an immigration hardliner, has made a number of controversial statements about undocumented immigrants. In 2014, he called immigration into Texas an “invasion” and said these immigrants bring “third-world diseases.”

During his election campaign in 2018, Patrick erroneously said via his campaign’s Facebook page that “criminal aliens” committed over 500,000 crimes in Texas.

Brock said he hopes people will donate to the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES).

Ken Klippenstein is a senior investigative reporter for TYT. He can be reached on Twitter @kenklippenstein or via email: [email protected].

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