Race and the Gates of Harvard

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A Huffington Post writer argues that Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested for "failure of a black to show proper deference to a white police officer." Pop culture journalist Touré, writing in The Daily Beast, says that little has changed since the 1960s and "Malcolm X's 40-year-old quote is still true: 'What do you call a black man with a Ph.D.? A nigger.'" Amy Goodman says that while "W.E.B. Du Bois' color line has shifted…it hasn't been erased."

Surprisingly, The Boston Globe chimes in today with an admirably restrained editorial on the Gates kerfuffle, urging readers from drawing broad conclusions about racist Cantabrigians (which gave 88 percent of its votes to Obama):

The confrontation between Gates and Sergeant James Crowley isn't a textbook example of racial profiling. The Cambridge officer was investigating a citizen's call about a possible break-in at Gates's home. It turned out to be the noted professor and his driver struggling with a broken door. Gates apparently took umbrage at the officer's line of questioning, at one point suggesting that the police presence could be explained by the professor's race. The conversation escalated; the report depicts Gates as haughty and insulting. He was cuffed and charged with disorderly conduct…

Still, confrontations with police seldom end well, even if officers are in the wrong. If Gates believed he was being treated discourteously, he could have filed a complaint with the police department's section for professional standards. Ultimately, though, it was the officer's responsibility to de-escalate the situation, even by walking away. Police are trained specifically to ignore verbal provocations that come their way.

The Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates is, I think, on target here:

It needs to be said that, though I casually threw it out there, I really have no clue whether race played a role in Gates' arrest. It's important to say that. I don't know what I would have done if I were in shoes (sic), but I don't know that I'd assumed (sic) race. I think the decision to arrest a guy for, at worst, being rude in his own house is shockingly stupid.

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  1. For Christ’s goddamned sake, already: someone should hip these people to Balko’s blog so’s they could watch cops abusing everybody in sight all day long.

    I’ve been trying to be patient with this whole story, but this is draw nigh upon the limit.

  2. Billy, angry though I am at usual police abuses, tossing up that bullshit Malcolm X quote is just another way for the Left to convince themselves that every day in 2009 America is Selma, 1965.

  3. ‘I think the decision to arrest a guy for, at worst, being rude in his own house is shockingly stupid.’

    Yes – are the cops going to arrest every rude person in America? Obviously not – what a recipe for masochism! Instead, the cops want a one-way deference – they can be rude to citizens, citizens must be ingratiatingly polite to them. A hallmark of a caste system.

  4. And this goes beyond race, although like just about everything in America, there’s a race angle if you want to look for one.

  5. Sounds like the guy leapt onto his high horse right quick and got pretty mouthy with the cop. It seems understandable that the cop might want the guy to confirm it’s his house – the cop likely would have done that with anyone. But if get all up in a cop’s face, yelling at him, etc., you can expect him to not play nice.

    But of course, these days, everything is all about race.

  6. The assertion that “little has changed since the 1960s” is so downright laughable that it is only out of a sense of White Guilt that we don’t immediately classify anybody saying it as a moron. If a woman or a homosexual said that “nothing has changed since Seneca Falls/Stonewall”, we would rightly call them airheaded.

    So, so too with “Toure”

  7. I’m glad you said it because I’ve been thinking it every time I see this story.

    This professor really seems to have gone out of his way to decide that this issue is about race. Honestly, he almost seems happy about it.

    If anything, the officer was being overly nice to the guy. I mean, Leo decided not to taze him and shoot his dogs before he arrested the guy for disorderly. That’s a pretty big victory for civil rights right there.

  8. “Jack Dunphry” posting in The Corner sounds about right to me:

    The claim that Gates had been “profiled” is ludicrous. Police responded to a 911 call from a witness who described two black men she believed to be breaking into a home. If contacting a black man then found inside that very home is deemed to be “profiling” then the term itself has been stripped of its meaning.

    And though arresting Gates may in retrospect be seen as imprudent, to suggest he was hauled in on some trumped-up charge is to accept the following as true: Gates did not in fact behave as the officer described in the report but was instead as meek as a lamb, and despite the lack of legal cause the officer fabricated a case against him even after becoming aware of his exalted status as a Harvard professor. Straining Gates’s credibility even further, the arresting officer would have had to believe his fabrication would be supported not only by all the other officers who had gathered at Gates’s home, but also by the woman who had placed the original call to the police and the “at least seven other unidentified passers-by” referred to in the police report.

    Preposterous. If there’s an apology that’s owed, it’s not from the police.

  9. Question: If you go through life looking for racist motives every time something bad happens to you, doesn’t that make you a racist?

  10. Nigger’s just lucky he didn’t get tazed or worse.

  11. look, folks, the Liberals’ Power is in manufacturing victims, to the point where everyone is a victim and the only solution is the Gentle Hand of Big Brother.

  12. Once I prove it’s my house you can get the fuck off my lawn. It’s bad enough you’re expected to kiss a cop’s ass when you get pulled over.

  13. “Once I prove it’s my house you can get the fuck off my lawn.”

    Yes. I would cheer Gates if he was giving them hell all the way to the curb and until they drove out of sight. In this aspect of the thing, I’m with him for sure.

    As for Dunphry: “And though arresting Gates may in retrospect be seen as imprudent, to suggest he was hauled in on some trumped-up charge is to accept the following as true: Gates did not in fact behave as the officer described in the report but was instead as meek as a lamb, and despite the lack of legal cause the officer fabricated a case against him even after becoming aware of his exalted status as a Harvard professor.”

    {cold stare} …as if cops now couldn’t possibly be that stupid and arrogant? Pardon me, but… shut the fuck up.

  14. Once Gates identified himself and proved he was on his own property he has a right to say whatever the fuck he wants about/to the cop. No crime has been committed and if he tells them to leave and they don’t, the cops are now trespassing. He could have rolled out a picture of him fucking the cops mother and the cop still should have gotten the fuck of his property.

    Cops get special privileges to combat crime. When they know there’s no crime they need to respect other people just like anyone else.

  15. Fred,


    you can expect him to not play nice.

    Actually, I expect the cop to do his damn job. Verify the ID and go away.

  16. I will say this in the cop’s defense, if he hadn’t confirmed Gates’ identity, he would have potentially left the city liable. Imagine if your house was robbed and you later found out your neighbors called the police but the police took the burgler’s word that he lived there. Without a videotape of the confrontation it is hard to tell if the cop, Gates or both were being assholes.

  17. Fred and Richard made my points. It sure sounds like Gates was mostly just being a jerk. If he’d been polite to the cops, none of this would have happened.

  18. Without a videotape of the confrontation it is hard to tell if the cop, Gates or both were being assholes.

    We can safely assume that both parties were being assholes. That still doesn’t justify an arrest.

  19. PapayaSF,

    If the cop had done his damn job, none of this would have happened. His job after verifying ID was to leave. There is a fundamental constitutional right to be a jerk.

  20. Gates did not in fact behave as the officer described in the report but was instead as meek as a lamb, and despite the lack of legal cause the officer fabricated a case against him even after becoming aware of his exalted status as a Harvard professor.

    Gates can behave however he fucking wanted. He was in his own house, and he produced ID that he was the person who was supposed to be there. At that point Gates doesn’t have to be nice or polite or civil. He can be as big a dick as he wants, cuz last I checked that wasn’t illegal. If it were me I would have said “now get the fuck out of my house”. Once he showed his ID, the cop should have said “Sorry to bother you, have a nice evening” and left.

    Furthermore, why should I trust the police report over Gates’ side of the events that evening? If I have learned anything by reading Balko’s blog it’s that cops lie all the fucking time on their reports. Like this asshole cop did http://www.philly.com/philly/news/51196597.html (I dare someone to read that article and not be mad as hell at the conduct of the cops) — he completely falsified the police report, and he and other cops asked the clerk at the convenience store to erase the tapes and help the cop out and lie for him. (and Internal affairs didn’t seem to have a problem with that). Sorry, but when it comes to a cop’s word vs. their innocent victim, the cop’s don’t carry much credibility to me.

    Gates also says he asked for name and badge number of the cop, and the cop refused to give it to him. I’d be pretty pissed too if the cop ignored me repeatedly when I ask the cop to identify himself to me.

    And the fact that they dropped the charge the next day, to me, says that the charges were bullshit to begin with.

    Now as far as the race angle goes, I can’t say, but from a separate Huffington post piece about the incident :

    Some of Gates’ African-American colleagues say the arrest is part of a pattern of racial profiling in Cambridge.

    Allen Counter, who has taught neuroscience at Harvard for 25 years, said he was stopped on campus by two Harvard police officers in 2004 after being mistaken for a robbery suspect. They threatened to arrest him when he could not produce identification.

    If some African Americans in the area feel they are being singled out, targeted, or mis-treated by the local police, who the am I or anyone else to call bullshit? The fact that he isn’t the only one seems to lend some plausibility to the racial angle.

  21. Ah, see? And here comes ChicagoTom, fresh-faced as a college sophomore, willing to see Black Victimology everywhere and anywhere.

    My declarations:
    1. Cop was jerk, should have left and not escalated
    2. Pattern of racism in Cambridge is total bullshit
    3. Black Victimologists like Brandon Terry are going to milk this for all its worth.

  22. You mean that haughtiness isn’t against the law?*

    Gates was specifically accused of being “tumultuous,” which I guess covers things like saying “yes, this is my house now will you please leave.”

    I find it remarkable that many commenters at a libertarian site believe that it should be against the law to talk back to a policeman.

  23. Alan Vanneman – who the fuck said that?

  24. “What do you call a black man?”

    If you judge him by Gates’ behavior, a whiner who will cry racism any chance he can.

    This story will hurts blacks even more. A white boss will be even more reluctant to hire a black applicant out of fear the person will cry racism over every little thing.

  25. Fred and Richard made my points. It sure sounds like Gates was mostly just being a jerk. If he’d been polite to the cops, none of this would have happened.

    Being a jerk is an arrestable offense? If that’s the case how come you aren’t in jail 🙂

    Seriously, he is in his own home, after a long trip. His door is jammed, he has to go around the back to get in, and now the cops come to his door treating him like a criminal.

    I’d be a jerk too.

    But that assumes that the police’s version of the events is the credible one. And I would think that on this board, there would be more skepticism towards the police. But I guess that skepticism is reserved for cases where race isn’t raised as an issue?

    Look I know quite a few cops, and all of them have a very low opinion of minorities. Why is it so hard to believe that a black man might not be treated the same as a white man in the same situation?

  26. Dunphry: “…imprudent…”

    What an asshole.

    And I wanna add my voice to the choir. Whether this was a racial incident or not is irrelevant. It highlights the attitude of police vs. citizens. As Mad Max noted, it’s example #781,230,997,613,055,494 of someone being deprived of their liberty because a cop didn’t get his ego stroked.

  27. Can we all agree that the good professor has made an academic career out of being a racebaiting asshole, and that cops shouldn’t arrest a person for being a racebaiting asshole?

  28. And though arresting Gates may in retrospect be seen as imprudent, to suggest he was hauled in on some trumped-up charge is to accept the following as true: Gates did not in fact behave as the officer described in the report but was instead as meek as a lamb, . . . .

    And I would be startled to learn that the cop was being polite and respectful to Gates while he was confirming Gates’s claim to be resident of the house. I suspect that the cop was instead arrogant and confrontational and that he treated Gates as a suspect up until the moment Gates established his right to be in the house. That’s just how cops behave, as the WaPo article that wingnutx linked to confirms. (“The second thing they did was to ask me for my identification, to prove that I lived there. They were demanding and they were not friendly. They kept their flashlights in my face. They did not take my word for it that it was my house, though I was as white as they were.”) It’s called “taking control of the situation.” As a matter of principle, they refuse to withhold judgment in light of the live possibility that the person they’re dealing with might be a householder (or even the victim of a real burglary). When in doubt, treat everyone as a perp.

    Of course, Gates was a true asshole himself. He could have de-escalated the situation, but that isn’t what academics with chips on their shoulders do. They have to engage in contests with cops in an effort to establish who has the larger genitals. (The funny thing is, it’s really irrelevant that you’ve got a larger dick than the cop, as long as he (or she) has a gun.)

  29. Being a jerk is an arrestable offense?

    Fuck that. I’d be on death row.

  30. The conversation escalated; the report depicts Gates as haughty and insulting.

    A Harvard professor? Haughty and insulting? It strains credibility.

    Straining Gates’s credibility even further, the arresting officer would have had to believe his fabrication would be supported not only by all the other officers who had gathered at Gates’s home, but also by the woman who had placed the original call to the police and the “at least seven other unidentified passers-by” referred to in the police report.

    So, we’re supposed to think the cop was telling the truth because it is unthinkable that he wouldn’t expect his lies to be supported by his fellow cops? As for the seven passers-by, since he didn’t identify them in his report, the cop can be pretty confident they won’t be called as witnesses, can’t he?

    C-, Dunphy. And I’m grading on a curve.

  31. I don’t know if he’s “good professor” or a “racebaiting asshole” but I do know “cops shouldn’t arrest a person for being a racebaiting asshole”.

    How’s that?

  32. FoE- I’m down with that.

    Why is it so hard to believe that a black man might not be treated the same as a white man in the same situation?

    It is not hard to believe, but Crying Wolf gets old after a while. Ennui sets in.

  33. In all the accounts of this stupid shit I’ve read in the media, not one of them has mentioned the dipshit stupidity of the assholish neighbor for 1) Not recognizing the supposedly famous, or at least locally well-known, occupant of the house that he or she suspected was being burgled, and 2) Defaulting to calling the cops instead of seeing perhaps he (or she) could lend a hand.

    Can we all agree that the good professor has made an academic career out of being a racebaiting asshole, and that cops shouldn’t arrest a person for being a racebaiting asshole?

    The article about this stupid shit on CNN makes me want to gouge my eyes out. African-Americans “wept” when they saw his mugshot. GIVE. ME. A. FUCKING. BREAK.

  34. If Gates believed he was being treated discourteously, he could have filed a complaint with the police department’s section for professional standards.

    *outright, prolonged laughter*

  35. Ah, see? And here comes ChicagoTom, fresh-faced as a college sophomore, willing to see Black Victimology everywhere and anywhere.

    Uhmm—here comes TAO — defender of the oppressed white majority who refuses to admit that racism ever exists.

    What’s your take TAO, that race never factors into how a cop treats someone? That blacks and whites and mexicans are all treated the same way by the police?

    And you call me “fresh-faced”. Hilarious.

    2. Pattern of racism in Cambridge is total bullshit

    Really? Because you said so?

  36. I will say that disorderly conduct is generally a non-crime that the Supreme Court should do away with.

    You can get charged with DC just for yelling. That tends to be the key. If Gates was following the officer outside and continued yelling at him, then it’s not unusual he got a DC.

    You are fairly safe even swearing at an officer (as long as it’s not loudly), but as far as I’m aware, courts have upheld giving people DC just for yelling.

  37. I would honestly expect a very different response here to a story about a guy getting arrested on his own property.

  38. What’s your take TAO, that race never factors into how a cop treats someone?

    Whoops, never said that. I am, however, amused that you’re taking this one arrest, combining it with Counter’s “near arrest” and, as a result, are willing to believe the absolute worst about humanity.

  39. It is not hard to believe, but Crying Wolf gets old after a while. Ennui sets in.

    ANd how do you know they are crying wolf?

    If your TAO, you know because it’s a black man complaining. I mean Obama got elected President. That means racism is dead!

    Really the only people who are treated poorly because of their race is white males who get discriminated against by affirmative action. Everyone else is crying wolf in TAO’s eyes.

  40. wrong again, ChicagoTom. on many occasions, I have decried institutional racism, especially with respect to the Drug War.

  41. admirably restrained

    WTF???

    It’s the newspaper giving the government yet another hummer.

  42. Whoops, never said that. I am, however, amused that you’re taking this one arrest, combining it with Counter’s “near arrest” and, as a result, are willing to believe the absolute worst about humanity.

    I tend to believe the people that live in the community over idiot blog commenters who decree “it’s all bullshit”

    I would honestly expect a very different response here to a story about a guy getting arrested on his own property.

    Why?

    Pretending that racism is VERY RARE and very isolated is more important to some “libertarians” than any issues of a man arrested for being in his own house.

  43. Seriously, he is in his own home, after a long trip. His door is jammed, he has to go around the back to get in, and now the cops come to his door treating him like a criminal.

    You overlooked the part where the cops got a call from a neighbor saying that it looked like there were two black guys trying to break into the house, and that when the cops showed up, lo and behold, there was at least one black guy behind a door that had been broken into. Do you really think the cops, faced with that situation, should just say, “Oh, that’s all right. You claim you live here, and that’s good enough for me”?

    I have to resist the temptation to wish that Gates becomes the victim of a home invasion by a 58-year-old black robber and his younger, bigger black accomplice, that while the young guy is duct-taping Gates’s hands, feet, and mouth down in the basement, preparatory to looting the house, the cops come to the door and confront the older robber. At that point, the older robber claims to live there, and the cops meekly apologize and leave, since they wouldn’t want to engage in racial profiling or anything like that.

  44. In all the accounts of this stupid shit I’ve read in the media, not one of them has mentioned the dipshit stupidity of the assholish neighbor for 1) Not recognizing the supposedly famous, or at least locally well-known, occupant of the house that he or she suspected was being burgled,

    Well, you’re right about one thing: Next time the neighbor sees someone she doesn’t recognize trying to bust down Gates’s door, and suspects it might be a burglar, instead of being neighborly, she’s going to say, “Fuck him. He can call the NAACP for help.”

  45. wrong again, ChicagoTom. on many occasions, I have decried institutional racism, especially with respect to the Drug War.

    What kind of racism are you talking about? The laws that are passed are targeting blacks or the enforcement/application targets blacks more and blacks get hauled to jail more often than white would for the same offenses (usually posession)

    Cuz if it’s the latter, why would it be hard to believe that the racism doesn’t spill over into how they treat perps for B & E or assault or anything else.

  46. I tend to believe the people that live in the community over idiot blog commenters who decree “it’s all bullshit”

    Like I said, you’re basically manufacturing this belief out of two incidents, one of which is basically unverifiable.

  47. FoE: yup. I’m in. That’s about the size of it.

  48. The Malcolm X quote is still true. Remember the “we’re voting for the n*****” quips from western Pennsylvania?

  49. If Gates believed he was being treated discourteously, he could have filed a complaint with the police department’s section for professional standards. Ultimately, though, it was the officer’s responsibility to de-escalate the situation, even by walking away. Police are trained specifically to ignore verbal provocations that come their way.

    HA HA HA! That guy is a comic genius! I was wondering who would fill Dave Barry’s shoes and now that I’ve found … wait. You mean the writer was serious? “File a complaint with professional standards?” “Police are trained to ignore verbal provocation?” Since when?

  50. A few months ago my…illegal activities went a little too far. I got caught with some about $15 of merchandise that was…not mine.

    I had to sit in Kroger and deal with two cops. And deservedly so.

    Point of the story. I knew my jig was up and I was very cooperative and polite. One of the cops didn’t like that I wasn’t crying or claiming my innocence or whatever. I don’t know what he wanted from me but he “didn’t like [my] tone.” He became very angry and started to yell at me, denigrating my attitude.

    Politely, I told the officer that his partner was being very calm, as were the store owner and myself. It was the cop who had his hand on his gun and yelling threateningly.

    He did not like this.

    I, a calm and cooperate offender, almost had a gun drawn on me by a cop over $14.57 in stolen property.

    Seriously, fuck tha police.

  51. And now we have fantasies of violence against a black guy who, I guess, just doesn’t know his place. Awesome.

    I have to resist the temptation to wish that Gates becomes the victim of a home invasion by a 58-year-old black robber and his younger, bigger black accomplice, that while the young guy is duct-taping Gates’s hands, feet, and mouth down in the basement, preparatory to looting the house, the cops come to the door and confront the older robber. At that point, the older robber claims to live there, and the cops meekly apologize and leave, since they wouldn’t want to engage in racial profiling or anything like that.

    Would it ruin your masturbation session if I told you most robbers do not dress or talk like Harvard professors? You seriously make me sick.

  52. If the cop had done his damn job, none of this would have happened. His job after verifying ID was to leave.

    He did leave. According to the police report, though, Gates wouldn’t let it drop, but followed the cop out onto the porch and continued yelling at him, even after being told he’d be arrested if he didn’t calm down. Now maybe the cop was lying about the yelling, but no one who was on the scene is claiming that Gates was arrested inside the house.

  53. You overlooked the part where the cops got a call from a neighbor saying that it looked like there were two black guys trying to break into the house

    No I didn’t overlook anything. It just has no bearing on whether or not this guy had a right to be upset/cranky/pissed/whatever. No one is arguing that the cops shouldn’t have been there, or verified who he was.

    Once they did though, they should have been apologetic and left. He produced ID. The cops should have just left. And they should have given him their names and badge numbers when asked. How come people keep overlooking that part too? It seems like once he asked for badge numbers, the cops then took it personally.

    He did leave. According to the police report, though, Gates wouldn’t let it drop, but followed the cop out onto the porch and continued yelling at him, even after being told he’d be arrested if he didn’t calm down. Now maybe the cop was lying about the yelling, but no one who was on the scene is claiming that Gates was arrested inside the house.

    The account I read (last night) stated that the cop asked Gates to step outside for a moment — and then arrested him. Not that he followed the cop out of his house by choice to yell at him. And this happened after Gates was repeatedly ignored when he asked the cops name and badge number.

  54. Would it ruin your masturbation session if I told you most robbers do not dress or talk like Harvard professors?

    That sounds like profiling to me.

  55. Can we all agree that the good professor has made an academic career out of being a racebaiting asshole, and that cops shouldn’t arrest a person for being a racebaiting asshole?

    After having seen more of HLG Jr. on rant shows than is healthy for my sanity, I can certainly agree to that. What this incident points out is the need to get that catch all, ‘disorderly conduct’ b.s. stricken from the books in every state. It criminalizes conduct that either makes a cop feel uncomfortable or hurts his little feelings. If HLG, Jr. verbalized a threat or assaulted the cop, well there are laws that cover those actions without resorting to a vague catch all that is an embarrassment to our finely tuned system of jurisprudence.

    Pity though, that the unproductive race angle of this story is the aspect that will get played out in the media instead of the bad boys on the beat being overzealous in their professional capacity.

  56. Would it ruin your masturbation session if I told you most robbers do not dress or talk like Harvard professors?

    Not tenured professors of stupid bullshit, anyway.

  57. Here’s the police report (PDF)

    You all judge for yourselves. Regardless, the charge of racism is, in my mind, BS.

    Here’s an aerial of where Gates lives. I am willing to believe in police stupidity way more than your average joker, but I seriously doubt the police entered that posh neighborhood thinking “no way black academics live here; let’s crack some black skulls!”

  58. Once they did though, they should have been apologetic and left. He produced ID. The cops should have just left. And they should have given him their names and badge numbers when asked. How come people keep overlooking that part too? It seems like once he asked for badge numbers, the cops then took it personally.

    Granted, all, but why is that racist? The cops are equal opportunity shitheads, probably.

  59. What? So describing suspects by anything but race is “profiling?” Uh, okay. The problem people have with racial profiling is the racial part, not the profiling.

    Fuck off, you racist piece of shit.

  60. Do you really think the cops, faced with that situation, should just say, “Oh, that’s all right. You claim you live here, and that’s good enough for me”?

    I would say that at the point the police were presented with a Harvard ID and driver’s license showing Dr. Gates picture next to the address of the residence, then yes, they should say “that’s good enough for me.” The only reason to be hanging around at that point is to try to lure him outside in order to arrest him for not showing proper respect… er, disorderly conduct.

  61. Like I said, you’re basically manufacturing this belief out of two incidents, one of which is basically unverifiable.

    I suppose that to you unless the cops are caught on film yelling KILL THAT UPPITY NIGGER, it’s always just black victimology.

    I am choosing to believe something that corroborates what I have seen in practice here in Chicago and in other places.

  62. max hats – he’s not racist and that was uncalled for.

  63. I suppose that to you unless the cops are caught on film yelling KILL THAT UPPITY NIGGER, it’s always just black victimology.

    now you’re just being wholly dishonest. do you ever tire of telling lies?

  64. Granted, all, but why is that racist? The cops are equal opportunity shitheads, probably.

    Hasn’t reason cited studies that show that blacks face harsher consequences for things like possession than whites?

    Why is it so hard to believe that that kind of preferential treatment could spill over to other offenses?

  65. “Well, you’re right about one thing: Next time the neighbor sees someone she doesn’t recognize trying to bust down Gates’s door,…”

    {blink} Listen… take in the tenth word, and the fourteenth and fifteenth words of that line right there, and see if you can put this together.

    Can you understand that there is some question over her standing as a {cough} “neighbor”?

  66. Spoonman | July 22, 2009, 4:55pm | #
    The Malcolm X quote is still true. Remember the “we’re voting for the n*****” quips from western Pennsylvania?

    Spoonman,

    Are all your friends brown and red?

  67. come on, Mr. Beck, I don’t even know all of my neighbors.

    Here’s Gates’ statement. Yeah, cops do shitheaded things sometimes, but the disparity between this statement and the police report suggests that the truth lies somewhere in between.

  68. What a dilemma for libertarians! How to reconcile beliefs on police abuse with latent white racial resentment.

  69. The Globe said “Police are trained specifically to ignore verbal provocations that come their way.”

    I grew up in MA. One day I looked out my back window to see friends of mine jumping out of a car and running toward the property’s edge toward a view of the main road. Keep in mind that there was no driveway leading to my back yard, they had driven over the yard to get there in a hurry. I asked what was wrong. They told me that while driving by a police office who had someone pulled over and was searching them against the car, my friend yelled out the window “May I suggest you use the nightstick officer!” The officer promptly let the man go and raced to his car to chase my friends (they sped up and got away). We watched the cruiser go by on the main road with its blue lights on. So here a police officer had someone pulled over (presumably for a crime of some sort, especially considering the search that was going on), and he chose to let this individual go and chase after some teenagers that hurt his fragile ego, lol. What type of training do they get exactly???

  70. max hats – he’s not racist and that was uncalled for.

    Generally speaking, in my experience, non-racists don’t write slash fiction about how awesome it would be if a black guy got brutalized because he dared complain about the police, then make a snotty dumb comeback when called on it.

    If this was a white guy arrested on his own property for “disorderly conduct,” this entire thread would look a lot different, believe you me.

  71. now you’re just being wholly dishonest. do you ever tire of telling lies?

    Where am I being dishonest?

    That’s the honest opinion I have of you. Reading your comments, unless the racism is outright and in your face, you don’t believe that race could be a factor.

    And you discount the fact that another member of the community also says that in this affluent majority white community the police don’t treat black folks real well. His tale is “unverifiable”.

    As if he has something to gain by publicly stating that he thinks cops in his community have a race problem.

    Am I reading you wrong?

  72. If this was a white guy arrested on his own property for “disorderly conduct,” this entire thread would look a lot different, believe you me.

    Hear Hear!

    Some people want to pretend that reality isn’t as ugly as it really is, for some reason.

  73. If this was a white guy arrested on his own property for “disorderly conduct,” this entire thread would look a lot different, believe you me.

    Nobody would say he got arrested for being white, and would instead focus on the “disorderly conduct” part, right?

  74. max hats – again with the distortions. Seamus presented what would be the logical conclusion if the allegations of the police are true: why should the police get involved next time?

    Anyway, the thread looks different because, well, the racial angle is part of the post. The fact that you’re willing to imply terrible things about people tells me a lot about you and your priorities.

  75. TAO: you’ve got a problem, then. Probably not a show-stopper in the arc of your life, but you might think about it.

    Yo: “If this was a white guy arrested on his own property for ‘disorderly conduct,’ this entire thread would look a lot different, believe you me.”

    That happens all the time. There wouldn’t be a thread because it’s not a story.

  76. You know what I think would be neat? Having a police force staffed with the kind of people who are able to recognize – on sight – a famous scholar.

  77. That’s the honest opinion I have of you. Reading your comments, unless the racism is outright and in your face, you don’t believe that race could be a factor.

    Since I just said that I think that institutional racism is a problem upthread, you’re either lying again or illiterate. So, which one is it?

  78. max hats – again with the distortions. Seamus presented what would be the logical conclusion if the allegations of the police are true: why should the police get involved next time?

    It’s only the “logical” conclusion if you start with the inherently racist assumption that all black guys are indistinguishable. Pretty sure I can tell the difference between an affluent college professor and a street thug with a simple look at their clothing or hearing the first word out of their mouth, regardless of race. Police officers could do even better than me.

    He wrote out a racially motivated torture fantasy. That is gross. My motivation is strongly disliking gross people.

  79. Though of course, it is physically impossible for anyone to be racist in modern America, and it is ridiculous to allege someone is racist unless they outright declare themselves so in no uncertain terms, am I right?

  80. max hats – there was nothing racially motivated about it. That’s just you trying to shut down debate by feigning outrage. Stop it.

  81. Since I just said that I think that institutional racism is a problem upthread, you’re either lying again or illiterate. So, which one is it?

    I asked you to elaborate on that and you didn’t.

    Do you mean there is institutional racism with the way the cops use their discretion and enforce the laws? because if you believe that type of institutional racism exists, it’s even more puzzling why you are so firm in your belief that race played no part in this event.

    The belief in that institutional racism is what leads me to believe that had Mr Gates been white, he would have been offered an apology and much more respect by the police officers regardless of how uppity he would have gotten.

  82. let’s Occam this out, ChicagoTom. You have to believe that the police, two officers, mind, manufactured essentially the same story, in complete contravention to the facts and in front of seven witnesses, to arrest a prominent Harvard scholar, thinking “oh yeah, this will be good for our careers”.

    Like I said, I think the police can be dumb, brutal folks, but that doesn’t pass the commonsense test to me.

  83. Do you mean there is institutional racism with the way the cops use their discretion and enforce the laws?

    Yes, and in the origin of some of the laws.

    That doesn’t mean I need to believe it at every turn, however.

  84. read the wapo piece

  85. A Huffington Post writer argues that Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested for “failure of a black to show proper deference to a white police officer.”

    This is bullshit, the racial barrier has been erased. Now anyone can be arrested for failure to show deference to a police officer.

  86. If this was a white guy arrested on his own property for “disorderly conduct,” this entire thread would look a lot different, believe you me.

    yes, it would be a discussion of just about every episode of “cops.”

  87. read the wapo piece

    Racist.

  88. Though of course, it is physically impossible for anyone to be racist in modern America, and it is ridiculous to allege someone is racist unless they outright declare themselves so in no uncertain terms, am I right?

    This seems to be the meme that certain people are pushing on this thread.

    The same people who laugh when Scalia talks about the “new professionalism” of the police are the same people who want to pretend like racism in the PD is pretty much non-existant.

    The same people that will happily cast doubt on a police report when it involves say serving a warrant with SWAT teams are the same people that want to pretend like the cops wouldn’t make shit up in this case.

    Personally I try to be consistent. If a cops says something, anything, I am suspicious of its truthfulness. The police as an institution has lost a lot of credibility, not just for their direct actions, but the willingness/eagerness of their internal investigators to cover up their misdeeds and justify every action they take. (When was the last time an internal review decided anything other than the police acted appropriately? )

  89. The account I read (last night) stated that the cop asked Gates to step outside for a moment — and then arrested him.

    Funny, but that’s not what Gates’s lawyer’s statement said:

    After an additional request by Professor Gates for the officer’s name and badge number, the officer then turned and left the kitchen of Professor Gates’ home without ever acknowledging who he was or if there were charges against Professor Gates. As Professor Gates followed the officer to his own front door, he was astonished to see several police officers gathered on his front porch.

    Nor is it what the police report said:

    I told Gates that I was leaving his residence and that if he had any other questions regarding the matter, I would speak to him outside of the residence. As I began walking through the foyer toward the front door, I could hear Gates again demanding my name. I again told Gates that I would speak with him outside. My reason for wanting to leave the residence was that Gates was yelling very loud and the acoustics of the kitchen and foyer were making it difficult for me to transmit pertinent information to ECC or other responding units. His reply was “ya, I’ll speak with your mama outside”. When I left the residence, I noted that there were several Cambridge and Harvard University police officers assembled on the sidewalk in front of the residence.

    The cops should have just left. And they should have given him their names and badge numbers when asked. How come people keep overlooking that part too?

    I’m not overlooking that part. The police report says that Sgt. Crowley tried twice to answer Gates’s demand for his name (Crowley’s report says nothing about a demand for a badge number), but that Gates wouldn’t listen, and just continued his rant. A commenter quoted on Steve Sailer’s blog suggests a plausible explanation of how Gates’s claims can be reconciled with the police report:

    Reading both suggests that the real problem was a contest over dominance or control, with Gates likely so adrenalized that he suffered “auditory exclusion.”

    “Auditory exclusion” is a well-known phenomenon, a side-effect of the “fight or flight” adrenaline response, by which very excited people do not respond to nor remember hearing speech or even loud noises such as gunshots during periods of great stress.

    I certainly wouldn’t rule that possibility out. Gates sounds like a pretty excitable guy, if his first reaction to seeing a cop tell him he’s investigating a burglary report is to say (by his own report), “That’s ridiculous because this happens to be my house. And I’m a Harvard professor.” (Because, of course, Harvard professors never have their houses burglarized. Oh, wait. A burglar had recently tried to break into Gates’s *own* house.)

  90. there was nothing racially motivated about it.

    How colorblind and postracial. So, what is the non-racial motivation for the story then? Because the logic of it is garbage, as I’ve previously explained (twice).

  91. It seems to me that the media is extremely racist. This happens to white people all the time and it is never reported. Neither this man’s color nor his bullshit educational background should be relevant.

  92. let’s Occam this out, ChicagoTom. You have to believe that the police, two officers, mind, manufactured essentially the same story, in complete contravention to the facts and in front of seven witnesses, to arrest a prominent Harvard scholar, thinking “oh yeah, this will be good for our careers”.

    It isn’t a strech to believe that the cops don’t really worry about their careers when IA will basically cover for them and rule their actions justified — regardless of how they acted.

    Read this story TAO — http://www.philly.com/philly/news/51196597.html

    Anyone with half a brain wouldn’t do what the cops did in this situations — and yet they did it.

    The cop was caught on camera abusing a woman who was rear ended by the cops son. Then he falsified the police report. Then other cops on 2 seperate occasions went to the convenience store clerk and asked to have the tapes erased and asked the clerk to lie about the events to protect the cop. Oh and IA didn’t have a problem with the actions of his fellow officers trying to get the evidence destroyed or getting the clerk to lie.

    Let’s Occam this out. Cops are pretty fucking stupid and also quite arrogant because they rarely face real consequences for bad behavior, so no I don’t have a hard time believing that they just made shit up to cover their asses in their report.

  93. the non-racial motivation, max, is that if you’re going to holler about how unfair the police were to you when responding to a burglary, then don’t expect them to take you seriously when another call comes in about a burglary. It’s a Crying Wolf story.

    Here’s the Washington Post piece. Notice anything?

    On an optimistic note, Gates’ maltreatment at the hands of the police means he’s going to make a documentary out of police abuse:

    He said his documentary will ask: “How are people treated when they are arrested? How does the criminal justice system work? How many black and brown men and poor white men are the victims of police officers who are carrying racist thoughts?”

    I don’t know what to make of Gates’ notion that poor white victims of the police are victims of “racist thoughts”, other than (as I have been suspecting for a long time) that “racism” has lost its meaning.

  94. Check out James Parker v. Chief Justice for Administration and Justice, 67 Mass App. Ct. 174 (2006).

    There, Mr. Parker, arose at approximately 6 am on the morning of December 16, 1999. He lived in an elderly/low income complex in Attleboro, Mass. At the time, he was 57. He heard the doorbell to his unit ring and he proceeded to open the door to his apartment.

    An Attleboro cop greeted him and asked if he was James Parker. Mr. Parker said yes. The cop told Mr. Parker to “turn around, you are under arrest.” The cop was accompanied by two probation officers from the Taunton District Court. They had an arrest warrant for a James M. Parker, a white man some 25 years younger than James E. Parker, the plaintiff, a black man.

    James e. Parker protested. He told the cop and the probation officers that he had no outstanding warrants. He OFFERED to show his ID. The cop told him to “STFU” and “shut up nigger.” The cop jacked him up against the wall and sucker pucnhed Mr. Parker. The cop called for backup and two additional cops arrived within minutes. One of the additional cops took a mace can and struck Mr. Parker with the mace can in the face.

    The probation officers had a sketch of the white James Parker-who was the subject of the arrest warrant.

    Needless to say, the cops charged the black James Parker with A/B on a PO, resisting arrest and disturbing the peace. The black Mr. Parker had a third grade education and did not have the greatest verbal skills in the world.

    TAO-this stuff does happen. Granted, race relations are a lot better today than they were in 1964.

  95. I am not agreeing with Gates about everything he ever said, I’m not saying he’s a saint or even not a total asshole, and am sure the documentary will be ridiculous. But none of that matters.

    What I am saying is that this:

    I have to resist the temptation to wish that Gates becomes the victim of a home invasion by a 58-year-old black robber and his younger, bigger black accomplice, that while the young guy is duct-taping Gates’s hands, feet, and mouth down in the basement

    Is disgusting.

    But it’s a new America! We elected Obama! It’s okay for a white guy to write slash fic about how awesome it would be if a black guy got brutalized! I mean it’s just making a point. The point is that the black guy shouldn’t have been complaining.

  96. LM – wtf? Where did I say “this stuff” doesn’t happen?

    For the love of god, folks, read what’s written, not what you think you can divine from tea leaves and the Magic Eight-Ball on your desk.

  97. Bad cop, racist black celebrity, confrontation ensues.

    Who they gonna blame?

    Libertarians!

    Bad faith liberals with a myopic grudge and a poseur conscience,

    Who they gonna blame?

    Libertarians!

    Burly men in blue get quite testy too!

    Who they gonna blame?

    Libertarians!

    Chi Tom, Max Hats, & Tony, who are you gonna blame?

    Libertarians!

  98. I still contend that cops have become much more racially sensitive. They abuse everyone equally now.

  99. max hats – again, you’re reading racial motivation into it. And your consistent hyperbole (“slash fic” “brutalization” “racism”) is downright dishonest. Substitute “black guy” for any other race, and the story comes out the exact same.

  100. {blink} Listen… take in the tenth word, and the fourteenth and fifteenth words of that line right there, and see if you can put this together.

    Can you understand that there is some question over her standing as a {cough} “neighbor”?

    What’s your point? Are you suggesting that the “neighbor” didn’t really live in the neighborhood? That she did live there but was trying to frame Gates? Or that, if she was too far away to recognize Gates, she should have walked up closer and asked, “Excuse me, sir, but I’m trying to determine whether you are Professor Gates or are someone trying to burglarize his house?”

    You know, I am not on close terms with all my neighbors. There are even several houses where I wouldn’t be able to tell you with any certainty whether the resident is black, white, or other. But if I saw someone I didn’t know trying to bust down any of my neighbors’ doors, I don’t think I’d take that as the opportunity to stroll up and get better acquainted. I’d take seriously the possibility that it was a burglary, and would call the cops. But then again, I also like to assume, even if I don’t know them personally, that my neighbors would actually appreciate my concern and that, if it turned out that the person trying to bust down the door was actually the neighbor himself (or his driver), that he wouldn’t behave like an asshole when the police came investigating.

  101. This man would be a much greater spokesman if he was more like the mayor who had his dogs shot by the SWAT team.

    Instead of saying this shouldn’t happen to me or people like me, he should say that this shouldn’t happen to anyone.

  102. I like to think a lot of the people who get exasperated about this issue are being honest when they say they’re not racist. While I don’t agree with it, I can sort of understand the desire to simply move beyond race, that maybe if we stop talking about it, it will go away.

    What irks me is the resentment angle, the cries of reverse racism, the not caring about racism until it affects Frank Ricci.

  103. for what it’s worth, Gates even said he was glad the neighbor called the police.

  104. I only trust the police report version of events if there’s video to back it up. A few years ago I had an on-duty cop tell a bald-faced lie about me to my then-boss; fortunately, the cop was stupid enough to forget that my alleged behavior in the lobby of a police station would be caught on scurity camera.

    Guess he never figured I’d demand the chief pull the tapes.

    And I’m a harmless-looking little white female. If I were a big black guy, I’m guessing I’d have lot more such anecdotes to tell.

  105. TAO-this stuff does happen. Granted, race relations are a lot better today than they were in 1964.

    Yeah, this stuff happens. However, it didn’t happen to Gates, because what happened to him is not at all like what happened to Parker (unless, of course, you’ve misstated the facts of that case or all the reports of the Gates incident, even the ones by Gates himself and his lawyer, are making the cops out to be a lot more restrained than they were).

  106. Tony – have you found those “radical” decisions that were decided from an originalist viewpoint yet? You’ve had two days now.

  107. //Let’s Occam this out. Cops are pretty fucking stupid and also quite arrogant because they rarely face real consequences for bad behavior, so no I don’t have a hard time believing that they just made shit up to cover their asses in their report.//

    Yes, the police should just ignore all 911 calls about possible burglaries.

  108. so no I don’t have a hard time believing that they just made shit up to cover their asses in their report.

    I guess I am just not at the point yet where I believe that every police officer everywhere does nothing but beat people, lies on police reports and make specious, unsubstantiated arrests. I don’t think we live in Zimbabwe.

  109. TAO, My bad, I know what I did write might imply that you said that this stuff never happens. I know that you did not write that.

    Anyways, the larger issue is that this can and does happen to anybody who is not sufficiently genuflectional to the cops.

  110. Disinterested public witnesses to the arrest state that Gates is lying to rationalize his arrogance and abuse. He’s a liar crying wolf who’s assuring that people will dismiss future claims of police misconduct.

    “You have no idea who you’re messing with.” Fuck that shit threat, Gates.

  111. //Let’s Occam this out. Cops are pretty fucking stupid and also quite arrogant because they rarely face real consequences for bad behavior, so no I don’t have a hard time believing that they just made shit up to cover their asses in their report.//

    Yes, the police should just ignore all 911 calls about possible burglaries.

    Naah. Only calls about possible burglaries at homes with black residents in white neighborhoods. Cuz in those cases, you can pretty much take it for granted that the 911 call came from some nervous racist engaging in racial profiling and mistaking the resident for a burglar.

  112. Disinterested public witnesses to the arrest state that Gates is lying to rationalize his arrogance and abuse.

    The racist bastards.

  113. LM – sorry, hypersensitivity is setting in.

    And yes, genuflection issues are a real problem, but what irritates me to absolutely no end is that, instead of doing the larger exploration of police abuses (like Gates said he’s going to do, for Galt’s sake!) you’ve got race hustlers like “Toure” and Brandon Terry ginning up manufactured outrage, because it’s politically convenient to do so.

  114. Seamus:

    If a cab is in front of a house, and 2 black guys with luggage are on the front stoop, and the older black guy uses his shoulder to open the door of a historic home in Cambridge that has probably been settling for a century and doesn’t have a single door in it that doesn’t stick in the summertime – if you’re a white woman walking by and you think you’re witnessing a break-in, you’re probably a racist cunt. Sorry. The cop was probably just a generic “You must worship me and bow down before me” cop asshole, but the lady caller was a racist bitch.

    And the police report indicates that the officer informed Gates that he would only listen to his complaint and give Gates his name and badge number if Gates accompanied him outside.

    So both of your big “points” in this thread are utterly worthless. Go suck cop cock somewhere else.

    And that NRO comment is why I am never going back to the GOP, and never supporting any GOP candidate ever again, and I don’t care how much Democrats get elected or how much damage they do. Until guys like Jack Dunphry represent so tiny a portion of the GOP electorate that none of them can get a job writing for GOP publications, I’m gone.

  115. And the police report indicates that the officer informed Gates that he would only listen to his complaint and give Gates his name and badge number if Gates accompanied him outside.

    Where did it say that? Quote it.

  116. TAO,

    I think my point is well illustrated in the case Eat Me v. Suck My Cock.

  117. Yes, the police should just ignore all 911 calls about possible burglaries.

    No asshole, when they realize there is no burglary and the person they are speaking to is the resident of the house, they should apologize and leave. And not arrest the resident for being loud in his own fucking house. And they should be happy to give their name and badge number.

    In short they should act like fucking professionals instead of thugs.

    But you feel free to be an apologist.

  118. Seamus-

    Read the case-I am not misstating the facts about Parker. The City of Attleboro and the police officers settled. The Appeals Court heard the appeal of the dismissal of Mr. Parker’s case against the trial court and the probation officers.

    Yes, I do agree that Parker’s case is much different from Gates’ in that Parker had a third grae education, spoke poorly and lived in subsidized housing. Gates, OTOH, has a Phd and is a well known Harvard professor.

    I have always thought that most cops are smart enough to know that while they might be able to get away with roughing up an uneducated, inarticulate negro, they would not do the same with a man like Gates.

  119. so crude, Tony! It’s OK; I knew you were talking out of your ass the second you said that originalism is an answer in and of itself, rather than understanding that it’s an interpretive school like any other.

  120. And not arrest the resident for being loud in his own fucking house.

    Didn’t happen. More lying.

  121. I guess I am just not at the point yet where I believe that every police officer everywhere does nothing but beat people, lies on police reports and make specious, unsubstantiated arrests. I don’t think we live in Zimbabwe.

    Even if I regard every word in the police report as true, using the cop’s version of events it’s still absolutely transparent to anyone who isn’t retarded that the cop used a ruse to get Gates outside so he could concoct a disorderly conduct charge.

    I mean, get your fucking head out of your cunt for two seconds and read the damn report while assuming standard cop bad faith. It’s FUCKING OBVIOUS.

  122. Substitute “black guy” for any other race, and the story comes out the exact same.

    If you believe the story would have ever been written about a white guy, if you can’t see anything improper about the story, then you’ve led a charmed life.

  123. using the cop’s version of events it’s still absolutely transparent to anyone who isn’t retarded that the cop used a ruse to get Gates outside so he could concoct a disorderly conduct charge.

    Quote it. Again.

  124. He did leave.

    No he didnt. He stayed on the porch while the guy yelled at him. Turn your back and walk away. The only thing I can see being arrested for is assault when he physically restrains you from leaving.

  125. TAO-you know from many other threads that I do not cotton to “group think” of any sort, race hustlers most definitely included.

  126. //No asshole, when they realize there is no burglary and the person they are speaking to is the resident of the house, they should apologize and leave. And not arrest the resident for being loud in his own fucking house. And they should be happy to give their name and badge number.//

    Except for when he refused to provide identification when the officer first walked in. Not to mention the fact he followed the officer and was still ranting and raving. While it’s questionable whether he should have been arrested, Gates was also an idiot as well.

    //In short they should act like fucking professionals instead of thugs.//

    I’ll Occam this for you, would you rather we brought in all the police from Zimbabwe so we wouldn’t have to deal with these situations anymore?

    //But you feel free to be an apologist.//

    I simply don’t buy the rhetoric of every Al Sharpton on the block. Which apparently is akin to being an apologist.

  127. No asshole, when they realize there is no burglary and the person they are speaking to is the resident of the house, they should apologize and leave. And not arrest the resident for being loud in his own fucking house. And they should be happy to give their name and badge number.

    In short they should act like fucking professionals instead of thugs.

    What does it take for Reason commentators to take the side of the police when they arrest a guy on his own property for “disorderly conduct?”

    A: pure random happenstance! Flip of the coin! This is post racial America! Get your head out of your ass! Geez.

  128. “for the Left to convince themselves that every day in 2009 America is Selma, 1965”

    Jesus TAO, this really is your favorite line ever isn’t it?

  129. To the extent that the race issue occupies us, the more important issues presented by this case do not get the attention that they should.

  130. I am not on the side of the police, max hats. Where did you get that?

    Here, let me spell it out for you:

    GATES SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ARRESTED.

    Now, feel free to reference this post every time you get confused.

  131. Jesus TAO, this really is your favorite line ever isn’t it?

    Pretty much, but only because it’s so transparently true.

  132. Where did it say that? Quote it.

    http://www.wickedlocal.com/cambridge/news/x631635775/Cambridge-Police-not-releasing-Harvard-prof-Henry-Louis-Gates-arrest-report?popular=true

    The police report says, “I told Gates that I was leaving the residence and if he had any other questions regarding the matter I would speak to him outside the residence. As I began walking through the foyer towards the front door, I could hear Gates again demanding my name. I again told Gates that I would speak with him outside.”

  133. Fred and Richard made my points. It sure sounds like Gates was mostly just being a jerk. If he’d been polite to the cops, none of this would have happened.

    Same vibe, a hundred years ago: “If that damn nigger hadn’t got all uppity, nobody woulda got lynched.

    This isn’t about race, BTW — it’s about the police arresting someone for not being deferential enough to them, even though the person was in their own house, after identifying themselves to the police, and exercising their First Amendment right to be an arsehole.

    The police should have left after they identified Gates was the homeowner — period.

  134. Except for when he refused to provide identification when the officer first walked in

    Except that he didn’t. At least according to Gate’s account.

    As he was talking to the Harvard Real Estate office on his portable phone in his house, he observed a uniformed officer on his front porch. When Professor Gates opened the door, the officer immediately asked him to step outside. Professor Gates remained inside his home and asked the officer why he was there. The officer indicated that he was responding to a 911 call about a breaking and entering in progress at this address. Professor Gates informed the officer that he lived there and was a faculty member at Harvard University. The officer then asked Professor Gates whether he could prove that he lived there and taught at Harvard. Professor Gates said that he could, and turned to walk into his kitchen, where he had left his wallet. The officer followed him. Professor Gates handed both his Harvard University identification and his valid Massachusetts driver’s license to the officer. Both include Professor Gates’ photograph, and the license includes his address.

    Professor Gates then asked the police officer if he would give him his name and his badge number. He made this request several times. The officer did not produce any identification nor did he respond to Professor Gates’ request for this information. After an additional request by Professor Gates for the officer’s name and badge number, the officer then turned and left the kitchen of Professor Gates’ home without ever acknowledging who he was or if there were charges against Professor Gates. As Professor Gates followed the officer to his own front door, he was astonished to see several police officers gathered on his front porch. Professor Gates asked the officer’s colleagues for his name and badge number. As Professor Gates stepped onto his front porch, the officer who had been inside and who had examined his identification, said to him, “Thank you for accommodating my earlier request,” and then placed Professor Gates under arrest. He was handcuffed on his own front porch.

    using the cop’s version of events it’s still absolutely transparent to anyone who isn’t retarded that the cop used a ruse to get Gates outside so he could concoct a disorderly conduct charge.

    That’s how I read the fact that the cop refused to answer Gates when asked for his name and badge number, but instead walks to the door. The cop was baiting him. He couldn’t very well arrest him for Disorderly Conduct in his own home, so he baited him onto his front porch to arrest him.

  135. You are fairly safe even swearing at an officer (as long as it’s not loudly) …

    How are things in Mayberry, anyway?

    Like intelligent commenters have pointed out we weren’t there. Trumped up claims of being a victim of racism, racist cops, and just plain ol’ asshole cops who abuse their authority all exist.

    The only thing we can be certain of is a professional cop would have walked away after ascertaining the man’s identity no matter what the guy’s attitude.

    This cop didn’t. Case fucking closed.

  136. And the police report indicates that the officer informed Gates that he would only listen to his complaint and give Gates his name and badge number if Gates accompanied him outside.

    Where did it say that? Quote it.

    Of course it says nothing of the sort. The police report doesn’t mention a demand for a badge number. (I have no idea whether Gates asked for it and the cop didn’t hear that part of the request, whether he did hear it but forgot to mention it in his report, or whether Gates meant to ask for the cop’s badge number as well as his name, or thought he must have done so, but in fact hadn’t.) The report also says that the cop gave his name initially, and in response to a demand from Gates. According to the report, when Gates made a second demand for the name, the cop said he was out of there, and that if Gates wanted to ask any more questions he could do so outside. (Of course, there are those posting here who are saying that, once the cop had verified that Gates was actually a resident of the house, he should have left, which is exactly what he did.)

  137. The police report says, “I told Gates that I was leaving the residence and if he had any other questions regarding the matter I would speak to him outside the residence. As I began walking through the foyer towards the front door, I could hear Gates again demanding my name. I again told Gates that I would speak with him outside.”

    Nice try, Fluffy, but the previous paragraph indicates that the officer provided Professor Gates his name twice, and indicated that he was leaving, probably because he was tired of being yelled at.

    Like I said, Gates should not have been arrested. That doesn’t mean that I need to swallow every bit of race-hustling pimp shit that gets shoved at me.

  138. From the police report.
    As Crowley continued to question Gates, the Harvard professor allegedly told him, “you don’t know who you’re messing with.” When Crowley asked to speak with him outside, Gates allegedly said, “Ya, I’ll speak with your momma outside.”

    I don’t find it credible that a harvard professor is using yo momma jokes either.

  139. GATES SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ARRESTED.

    I’m not saying you are taking any other stance. There’s major two arguments going on here.

    1) Did Gates deserve it

    2) Are racial motivations coming into play

    As I see it, you’re arguing mostly in regards to point 2. I am also arguing mostly in regards to point 2, but making occasional references to those arguing on point 1 to bolster my point. The post you quoted was not directed at you.

  140. //That’s how I read the fact that the cop refused to answer Gates when asked for his name and badge number, but instead walks to the door. The cop was baiting him. He couldn’t very well arrest him for Disorderly Conduct in his own home, so he baited him onto his front porch to arrest him.//

    You’re also taking everything Gates says with blind faith. If you want to be a skeptic you should try reading between the lines instead of automatically assuming that every police officer in America is a racist.

  141. I think TAO has a little board with a spinner on it with traditionalist institutions on it. Every morning he spins it and spends the day defending whatever it lands on. Today it landed on “the police.” And remember, this guy does NOT lean right!

  142. The police should have left after they identified Gates was the homeowner — period.

    Both the police report and the statement by Gates’s lawyer indicates that that’s what they did, except that Gates wanted him to stick around and give his name and badge number.

  143. TAO, I’m amazed you place such faith in the notion that the police report must be absolutely true. Has there ever been a police report where the cop admitted to behaving less-than-professionally? No; if all you know about cops is what you read in police reports, there’s never been a bad cop in all our history.

  144. I don’t find it credible that a harvard professor is using yo momma jokes either.

    Sounds like profiling to me.

  145. But I agree with ChicagoTom, it’s obvious the police are all racists. Especially in the Tawana Brawley case.

  146. . If you want to be a skeptic you should try reading between the lines instead of automatically assuming that every police officer in America is a racist.

    They aren’t all racist…they just have very little credibility.

    I just feel that most are all willing to lie to cover their asses or the asses of other cops.

    Maybe if once in a while some of these internal investigation would actually hold someone accountable I would feel differently.

    The cops are the ones who have cried wolf too many times. No I don’t believe them or what they put in their reports. They know that they get much deference and take advantage of it.

  147. But I agree with ChicagoTom, it’s obvious the police are all racists. Especially in the Tawana Brawley case.

    Shut up loser.

  148. Nice try, Fluffy, but the previous paragraph indicates that the officer provided Professor Gates his name twice, and indicated that he was leaving, probably because he was tired of being yelled at.

    Like I said, Gates should not have been arrested. That doesn’t mean that I need to swallow every bit of race-hustling pimp shit that gets shoved at me.

    No the police shit being shoveled obviously tastes much better to you.

  149. Sounds like profiling to me.

    You clearly think this is clever, but all it demonstrates is that you have no idea what profiling is, you have no idea about normal police practice, and you have zero grasp about what the problem with racial profiling is.

  150. In fact, Seamus, the only profiling method you endorse in this thread is racial profiling. What the hell?

  151. Don’t worry ChicagoTom, if I was in your position I’d be throwing out ad hominems too.

    Now, can you atleast accept the notion that not all police officers are racist or aching to arrest black professors.

    Once again, he shouldn’t have been arrested. But to make Gates out to be angelic is absurd.

  152. Seamus, on racial profiling:

    At that point, the older robber claims to live there, and the cops meekly apologize and leave, since they wouldn’t want to engage in racial profiling or anything like that.

    Seamus, on police being able to distinguish between a professor and a thug

    That sounds like profiling to me.

    Seamus, on whether a professor is likely to make yo momma jokes

    Sounds like profiling to me.

    I rest my case. TAO, do you really want to be defending this guy?

  153. MNG, too bad you don’t live here in Massachusetts and thereby get to listen to Gerry Callahan on WEEI 850 AM. Callahan is so pro cop that he gets me to rant in my car. Believe me, he would make TAO embrace Libertymike style anarcho-individualism.

  154. TAO, I’m amazed you place such faith in the notion that the police report must be absolutely true.

    I said that? Someone call the DOEducation – Illiteracy in America is reaching an all time high.

    For your edification, jennifer:

    Yeah, cops do shitheaded things sometimes, but the disparity between this statement and the police report suggests that the truth lies somewhere in between.

    That would be me @ 5:10.

  155. No the police shit being shoveled obviously tastes much better to you.

    Yet more distortions. you want to talk about someone who is categorically discrediting himself, you lie as much as the police.

  156. Now, can you atleast accept the notion that not all police officers are racist or aching to arrest black professors.

    Sure as soon as you admit that in your sad little world, cops are never racist.

    I never stated all cops are racist, so I don’t know why I should accept anything with regards to your bullshit premise.

    But a lot of them are and even people who believe the same as you in this case (that it wasn’t racially motivated) admit to institutional racism within the ranks of the police. So again — shut up loser, if all you have to add is lies about my position.

    But to make Gates out to be angelic is absurd.
    I never made him out to be angelic. Just that nothing he did warranted arrest.

    And yet I whole heartedly believe race played a role in this instance.

  157. Yes, I do agree that Parker’s case is much different from Gates’ in that Parker had a third grae education, spoke poorly and lived in subsidized housing. Gates, OTOH, has a Phd and is a well known Harvard professor.

    Oh, I get it: except for all the points on which these cases differ, they’re exactly the same.

    No, wait, I don’t get it. Is your point that if Gates had had a third grade education and lacked the gift of gab, then the cops, instead of asking for his ID, would have arrested him on sight and beaten him up for good measure, before he got a chance to mouth off to the cops? So I guess what we really should be outraged about is not that the cops got all arrogant and arrested him (after getting a bellyfull of Gates’s own arrogance) for failing to “respect mah authoratay”, but for the beating that he *would* have gotten had he been a little less prominent and distinguished.

  158. max hats:

    Oh, I’m sorry. I see now. Profiling is only bad when bad guys do it. If your heart is pure, you’re allowed to make generalizations and indulge in stereotypes to your heart’s content, and there’s nothing wrong with it. I’ll go report for reeducation now.

  159. In fact, Seamus, the only profiling method you endorse in this thread is racial profiling. What the hell?

    But please point out for me where in this thread I endorse racial profiling.

  160. Yet more distortions. you want to talk about someone who is categorically discrediting himself, you lie as much as the police.

    What did I distort?

    Read your fucking comments.

    You are treating the police with report with much more respect than Gates’s side of the story.

    In your view Gates is a shit shoveling race baiting liar. The cop?? Not so much.

    You haven’t said one fucking word disparaging about the cops in this incident other than “Gates shouldn’t have been arrested” .

    You are the one treating the police and their version of the events in this thread with a deference that is surprising.

    Do you have a problem with Mr. Gates for some reason?

    Please show me where I am distorting your position. Cuz I see you railing about Gates being not very credible, but every time you cite the police report you treat it as gospel.

  161. The same people who laugh when Scalia talks about the “new professionalism” of the police are the same people who want to pretend like racism in the PD is pretty much non-existant.

    Cambridge is an enlightened city.

    How is racism possible there?

  162. Seamus-

    My point is that, imo, most cops who would cross the line would be more apt to do so when the subject in question is a guy like Parker than if the subject is a guy like Gates.

  163. *sigh* – ChicagoTom, you’re absolutely lying about me now. Oh well, I don’t deal with liars.

    I was worried that the reason commentariat was going in this direction, and now I know it’s true. In an effort to “out Left the Left”, we have become unthinking, reflexive, airheaded leftists. If anybody has the audacity to say “wait a minute, I don’t think race was a factor here”, he’s unacceptably deviated from the Party Line that all police officers act like Rwandan thugs.

    What’s important to note is that the work that Radley Balko has done is important, the commnetariat has taken it a step too far and convinced themselves that they live in “AmeriKKa, Totalitarian Third-World Hellhole.”

    I’m sorry to see it.

  164. If Gates were white and the cop black TAO would have a very different opinion of the situation and everyone knows it. Hell make the cop an IRS agent and see where all his deference to government authority goes.

  165. //Sure as soon as you admit that in your sad little world, cops are never racist.//

    Never said that, but you stated all cops are stupid and by Occam’s Razer you also stated that the report was fraudulent.

    It seems that you believe everything Gates said, regardless of anything else.

    But I’m not a racebaiter. I prefer to learn of all the facts before rioting in Crown Heights.

    //So again — shut up loser, if all you have to add is lies about my position.//

    That’s about the extent of your argument, just telling anyone who disagrees with you to shutup. All I’m saying is the focus should be on learning all the facts of the case instead of blindly believing one side of the story.

  166. You haven’t said one fucking word disparaging about the cops in this incident other than “Gates shouldn’t have been arrested”.

    Um, yes I have. Note that I said that the truth lies somewhere in between the two reports, meaning that (counter your lies again), I don’t think the police report is “gospel”.

    Stop lying.

  167. Yet more distortions. you want to talk about someone who is categorically discrediting himself, you lie as much as the police.

    Let’s talk frankly..

    Do you think the cops are lying about anything? Do you think that Gates was acting all crazy and shouting at the cops, and refused to show ID and followed the polite police officer out of the house?
    Do you believe as the police report said that the cop repeatedly asked Mr Gates to calm down, and gates refused?

    Is there any part of the police report you don’t find credible?

    Do you think any of this has been embellished to justify the Disorderly Conduct arrest?

    Because you say “the truth lies somewhere between Gates’ account the police report” yet I don’t see where you are actually questioning anything in the police report.

    And if you believe the police report, then I don’t see how you can believe that he shouldn’t have been arrested. The police report reads like Gates was a raving mad man.

  168. My point is that, imo, most cops who would cross the line would be more apt to do so when the subject in question is a guy like Parker than if the subject is a guy like Gates.

    Uh, OK, but given the differences between what happened to Parker and what happened to Gates, it’s pretty clear that the Cambridge cops came nowhere near crossing the line that the Taunton cops crossed in the Parker case. So I’m not sure why the Parker case is even relevant here. As I said before, this kind of stuff certainly does happen all the time, but it didn’t happen to Gates, so I don’t see the relevance.

  169. If Gates were white and the cop black TAO would have a very different opinion of the situation and everyone knows it. Hell make the cop an IRS agent and see where all his deference to government authority goes.

    Wrong again, Tony. You, too, have shown yourself to categorically lie about people.

    Really, how do you folks look at yourselves in the mirror?

  170. Fluffy’s assertion was that the police officer’s own report indicated that he made several attempts to get Gates to come outside.

    I don’t know if having him outside made it possible or more justified to arrest him for disorderly, but if that is the case then it seems reasonable to assume that was the cop’s motivation.

  171. Let’s talk frankly..

    Choke on it. I don’t talk to people who are so rankly dishonest.

  172. Stop lying.

    Im not lying. You are being disingenuous.

    Show me one disparaging thing you have said about the police, their conduct, or the report in this instance.

    On the one hand you say : “the truth lies somewhere between Gates’ account the police report” (which is basically true about any disagreement) on the other hand you have described Gates is a shit shoveling race baiter.

    And I am lying when I say you are treating the cops with much more deference than Gates. Why is that?

  173. Tomorrows traditional institution to defend? the military? evangelicals? or the police again?

    The wheel will decide!

  174. Choke on it. I don’t talk to people who are so rankly dishonest.

    Exactly. You’re a disingenuous prick who can’t handle being called out.

    You haven’t said one negative thing about the cops, but you want to pretend like you are being even handed and treating both sides with doubt. Uh Huh.

    You choke on it you lying prick.

    Show me one thing you have said that comes close to “shit shoveling race baiter” about the cops.

  175. ChicagoTom:

    My declarations:
    1. Cop was jerk, should have left and not escalated

    there you go. Now piss off.

  176. Fluffy’s assertion was that the police officer’s own report indicated that he made several attempts to get Gates to come outside.

    Uh, no. The cop’s report indicated that he wasn’t going to answer Gates’s questions inside and that if Gates wanted to continue asking questions, he’d have to do it outside. The report is perfectly consistent with an intent to walk out the door and keep walking, *unless* Gates came out and continued the conversation. That in no way means that the cop necessarily wanted Gates to come out and continue it, or that he was attempted (much less “made several attempts”) to get Gates to come out.

  177. Tomorrows traditional institution to defend? the military? evangelicals? or the police again?

    The wheel will decide!

    I’m feeling “one man one woman nuclear families” tomorrow, MNG. Let’s hope there’s a gay marriage thread! 🙂

  178. I think, TAO, that if you want to prove you’re not a racist, this is not the issue to start being nuanced about government authority.

  179. I think, Tony, that you can choke on your lies about me just like ChicagoTom.

    I didn’t know that I had to “prove I’m not a racist”. for you to assert that I do makes you a disgusting SOB.

  180. Never said that, but you stated all cops are stupid and by Occam’s Razer you also stated that the report was fraudulent.

    Nice moving the goal posts.

    You accused me of saying all cops are racist. I never said that. And your response is to accuse me of also not saying that. Well played.

    This is where I say SHUT UP LOSER.

    It seems that you believe everything Gates said, regardless of anything else.

    Considering that they dropped the charges, and considering Mr gates did nothing wrong, I tend to believe him more than the police.

  181. Let’s talk frankly..

    I refuse to talk about hedgehogs.

    I can act like a certified lunatic on my own property. It’s my fucking property. As soon as the cop verified the mans identity he had one thing to do. Get the fuck off the man’s property. Nothing the man said should have changed that short of asking for more assistance from the police. (which I’m pretty sure he wasn’t going to do) The officer got mad because someone defied him. It might have been partially motivated by race, but it was more likely motivated mostly by ego.

    There are instances where people yell at police all the time and are not arrested on property that isn’t theirs. You can youtube a ton of funny encounters just like this. The cop is in the wrong, the person that called is more than likely your typical purse clutching liberal or old person that will scream equality and panic at the sight of a black man in their neighborhood.

    The officer had the duty to walk away and be the cooler prevailing person in the encounter. He failed.

  182. Get the fuck off the man’s property.

    See that’s how you be a libertarian. Don’t be shocked when suspicions are raised when you decide to start having a complex opinion on government authority when there is a black victim involved.

  183. Tony, nothing about your tiny mind shocks me anymore. I already said the police were wrong and I haven’t been nuanced about that at all. The only contention the entire time was whether this was motivated by race. I said it wasn’t. That says nothing about police rightness or wrongness.

    Did you click that Washington Post link yet? Did you notice the pic?

  184. Such vitriol! As I see it:

    Was the cop entirely in the wrong, legally speaking? It looks like it.

    Was Gates at all in the wrong, legally speaking? Not at all.

    Was the decision by the policeman to arrest Gates, putting himself entirely in the wrong legally, motivated by race? It’s impossible to know, but it wouldn’t be the first time.

    Is it unreasonable to assume that racism played a part? Not at all. It’s not race-baiting or hustling or anything like that, because it’s entirely possible that it’s true.

    Most of us here have enough distrust and cynicism that we recognize the police could arrest him for any reason they felt like it, but it’s certainly likely that race played a role in the cop’s response.

  185. The real shit stink of this is that the PC police have made this not about a man’s property, but about his skin color.

    I dunno if it’s “black victimology” and I don’t really give a fuck. Gates had every right to get pissed off and the cop probably has a chip on his shoulder about his authoritah. It ain’t fucking rocket science. Why automagically jump to the conclusion that black skin is at the center of this? Why not an asshole cop?

  186. TAO, Tony is a parody troll.

  187. Oh, I’m sorry. I see now. Profiling is only bad when bad guys do it. If your heart is pure, you’re allowed to make generalizations and indulge in stereotypes to your heart’s content, and there’s nothing wrong with it. I’ll go report for reeducation now.

    Okay, you’re an idiot who has no idea what profiling is. Check.

    But please point out for me where in this thread I endorse racial profiling.

    How quickly you forget your own little piece of revenge fantasy:

    At that point, the older robber claims to live there, and the cops meekly apologize and leave, since they wouldn’t want to engage in racial profiling or anything like that.

    I’m torn between you being an all out racist or just a complete fucking idiot with no idea what profiling means with only very minor race issues, but it’s tough.

  188. Tony is probably joe, now that I think of it.

  189. max hats – again, there’s nothing racial about Seamus’ story. It’s an Aesop tale about Crying Wolf. Deal with it.

  190. And the dog whistles about ‘oh no we can’t be profiling,’ the tacit endorsement of racial profiling, and the whole revenge fantasy in and of itself.

    Again, I’m willing to believe you are so untainted by America’s original sin of racism as to be completely unable to see anything wrong with any of that. All I’m saying is that if you don’t see what’s wrong with it, you’ve led a truly charmed life. I’ve known out and out racists, I’ve known how they talk, and racial resentment, anger about “we can’t be profiling” with rolled eyes as if of course being black should be inherently suspicious, and long drawn out stories about how great it would be if some outspoken black person got theirs – those things don’t just come out of nowhere. I call it like I see it.

  191. “original sin”

    ha, I always knew lefties had some religion in ’em. Everyone’s tainted by Original Sin and must be cleansed!

    you read way more into Seamus’ reply than was warranted or proper. Without proof, you’ve basically stereotyped and prejudged him based on your own experiences and blisteringly called him vicious names without getting the truth.

    you’re just as much of a bigot as you say he is.

  192. Sure, I’m bigoted against people who drop racial dog whistles. I can live with that.

  193. the convenient thing about dog whistles is that only you can hear them.

  194. A short story about a black guy being harmed written because the black guy was too loud. Followed by a lot of sarcastic comments that “we can’t be profiling.” Extremely obscure, really.

    I know you take your position of being above and beyond mere human bias very seriously, but you’ll have to forgive me if I find this entire discussion between us a bit hilarious.

  195. wow, you are so dishonest it’s incredible.

  196. But please point out for me where in this thread I endorse racial profiling.

    How quickly you forget your own little piece of revenge fantasy:

    At that point, the older robber claims to live there, and the cops meekly apologize and leave, since they wouldn’t want to engage in racial profiling or anything like that.

    OK, I’m going to try to explain it in simple words: If I say that police, called to investigate a possible burglary, should not just accept the say-so of a black person who claims to be a resident of the house to which police have been called, out of fear that they might be accused of racial profiling, that does not mean that I am “endors[ing] of racial profiling. Because under those circumstances (pay close attention now) the accusation of racial profiling would be wrong.

    That groundless accusation, by the way, appears to be one Gates himself was making. In an interview with The Root, Gates recounts how the cop asked Gates to show ID to demonstrate that he was who he claimed to be, rather than simply accepting Gates’s say-so, then jumps to the conclusion that “it’s clear that he had a narrative in his head: A black man was inside someone’s house, probably a white person’s house, and this black man had broken and entered, and this black man was me.” In other words, according to Gates, the cop wasn’t simply following good investigative procedure, but must have been applying a racial profile under which black man in nice house in white neighborhood=burglar. That characterization of the cop’s actions was a stupid one, and it’s why I suggested that it would serve Gates right if he were the victim of a burglary that the police failed to stop because they agreed with Gates’s principle that it would be out of line to insist on seeing ID under those circumstances.

  197. max hats:

    Or maybe I’ve misunderstood. Maybe your point is precisely that it *was* racial profiling when the cop asked for Gates’s ID, that he *should* have accepted Gates’s say-so, and that my suggestion that a prudent cop would have asked to see ID really *is* an endorsement of racial profiling. In that case, I’m torn between you being an all out racial grievance-monger or just a complete fucking idiot with no idea what profiling means with only very minor race issues, but it’s tough.

  198. And every time I mention that it’s pretty easy to tell the difference between a Harvard professor and a burglar you say ‘oh no that would be profiling.’ Which, frankly, I’m not even sure what that means, but whatever.

    The only way any of what this:

    OK, I’m going to try to explain it in simple words: If I say that police, called to investigate a possible burglary, should not just accept the say-so of a black person who claims to be a resident of the house to which police have been called, out of fear that they might be accused of racial profiling, that does not mean that I am “endors[ing] of racial profiling. Because under those circumstances (pay close attention now) the accusation of racial profiling would be wrong.

    makes any sense is if you can’t tell the difference between a professor and a burglar besides checking some primary documentation if the professor is black. Which is pretty mindblowing. Again, I’m forced to choose whether your a racist or a complete idiot. In the end, it doesn’t even matter.

  199. “This is where I say SHUT UP LOSER.”

    “makes you a disgusting SOB.”

    Dudes, don’t go over the top here…

    For what it’s worth I don’t think race is what this is all about. More likely is the general “respect my authority” attitude that is too common among police…A white fellow coping a ‘tude with a cop will get arrested pretty quick, probably just as quick as a non-white…

  200. wow, you are so dishonest it’s incredible.

    I am being completely honest. Not sure who I’m lying to impress. My good name on this board? uh.

    Speaking personally, if I were presenting myself as some sort of post-racial colorblind paragon of unbias, I would probably hesitate to throw around accusations of rhetorical dishonesty. Just saying. I have trouble taking what you are saying in all these posts with 100 percent seriousness.

  201. For what it’s worth I don’t think race is what this is all about. More likely is the general “respect my authority” attitude that is too common among police…A white fellow coping a ‘tude with a cop will get arrested pretty quick, probably just as quick as a non-white…

    For what it’s worth, I totally agree. But when a story like this makes it big, all the knuckle draggers come out of their caves, and the commentary on the event becomes a much greater event in and of itself.

  202. “I could hear Gates again demanding my name. I again told Gates that I would speak with him outside.”

    Certainly he should have given the name whether in or out of the house…

  203. max hats:

    So you seem to believe that a cop should *not* ask for “some primary documentation” but should conclude that if the guy *looks* like a professor, he obviously is one. I hate to break the news to you, but not all burglars go around wearing a black mask and a striped shirt, carrying a bag marked “swag.” Read the Washington Post article that wingnutx linked to, and you’ll see that demanding ID under circs like this is pretty routine. It has nothing to do with profiling.

  204. If I get hit by a burglar with soft hands wearing a cardigan and dropping lots of words with latinite endings, well, I’ll be having a pretty spectacularly unlucky day. You think a cop can’t tell in one millisecond whether Gates was actually a burglar? That’s a level of incompetence I wouldn’t dare accuse anyone of.

  205. To head off the obvious reply at the pass – the fact that Gates was arrested for disorderly conduct and not burglary is a bit of a clue, no?

  206. MNG – not to repeat this for the twelfth time, but the officer stated that he gave the name twice already.

    But when a story like this makes it big, all the knuckle draggers come out of their caves

    Actually, you turn people into “knuckledragges” in your own mind through the magic of psychological projection and accusations of dog whistling. Any disagreement with you on the subject leads to a charge of racism.

  207. so, yes, it is actually max hats’ contention that the officer was wrong to ask for ID.

    wow, that’s great.

  208. So you *do* believe that any competent cop can tell in a millisecond whether a person is a burglar or not, just by looking at his cardigan sweater and listening to his use of lots of words with latinate endings. I take back what I said earlier. You really are just a complete fucking idiot. And I sure hope you aren’t in a position to make policy regarding police procedure.

  209. Hardly. I haven’t accused you of racism, despite disagreeing with me a lot. Perhaps a bit of rhetorical dishonesty and willful ignorance, but not racism. I haven’t accused anyone of racism except Seamus, in fact. You know, the guy writing fiction about how he wishes Gates would get tied up and robbed.

    The “psychological projection” bit is a little entertaining. You’ve got me – I hate black people. How else could I possibly read anything untoward in series of comments about “we can’t be profiling” and a short story about a black guy getting what’s coming to him for complaining too much? Once again, we learn the real racists are the people who get offended by racism.

  210. It’s a story about a guy who happens to be black; you’re the only racialist here who sees color first off, doodles.

    anyway, you’ve shown yourself completely undependable in this: you really did just say that a good cop would not have asked for ID and just assumed that “looks like a professor = no wrongdoing”.

  211. I guess the proper standard police procedure is to coax burglars out of the house and then arrest them for disorderly conduct. And if you assume that when someone is screaming something to the effect of “I LIVE HERE NOW GIVE ME YOUR BADGE NUMBER” – you might be inclined to think they aren’t really burglars. Heh, rookie mistake. No, that’s when you know you’ve got to take them down.

    For disorderly conduct.

    Thank you, gentlemen, for making my day far more entertaining than it had any right to be.

  212. take Seamus’ story and replace all instances of “black” with “white” (or “purple” or “green”) and see if it the lesson doesn’t work the same way.

  213. yet again, your absolute willingness to distort shows what a fuck you are.

    bye.

  214. anyway, you’ve shown yourself completely undependable in this: you really did just say that a good cop would not have asked for ID and just assumed that “looks like a professor = no wrongdoing”.

    Somewhere you’ve got the idea that a good police officer does not make assumptions. I don’t think you’ve met many police officers, nor thought through how little police work would get done if everyone was approached with a truly open, scientific mind. Yes, if you’re reading this Seamus, that is profiling. It’s the backbone of how police generally operate. If you’re in skanky clothes on the street corner getting into random cars, that’s the profile of a hooker. If you’re walking strangely and acting loud and aggressively, that is the profile for someone under the influence. And if you’re dressed appropriate to the neighborhood and are confronting the officer at the scene, screaming that you live there and demanding a badge number? That is not the profile of a burglar.

  215. take Seamus’ story and replace all instances of “black” with “white” (or “purple” or “green”) and see if it the lesson doesn’t work the same way.

    No, it doesn’t, because if police were going to question me they’d be going off more than my race. This is because I am white.

  216. so, yes, you are saying that asking for ID was inappropriate.

    It’s a yes-or-no question, max hats. Just answer.

  217. I guess the proper standard police procedure is to coax burglars out of the house

    Proof of coaxing? none, as of yet. So, asserting facts not in evidence. That’s distortion one.

  218. No, it doesn’t, because if police were going to question me they’d be going off more than my race.

    So, is any questioning of a suspect who is a color other than white instantaneously suspicious, then?

  219. I don’t know. Maybe. But to make you happy, I’ll say yes. Yes it was completely appropriate. This is getting sidetracked. For the life of me, I don’t see how it, or anything really, justifies a story about how awesome it would be if Gates got tied up and robbed.

  220. well, see, here’s the thing: it’s the fact that you cannot see past race in this context to understand what Seamus was driving at. What he was driving at was that if you complain about the police responding the way they are supposed to respond, then you shouldn’t expect them to respond that way the next time.

  221. obey the Tao

  222. I have to resist the temptation to wish that Gates becomes the victim of a home invasion by a 58-year-old black robber and his younger, bigger black accomplice, that while the young guy is duct-taping Gates’s hands, feet, and mouth down in the basement

    Emphasis all me. There’s a difference between illustrative tales and sadism.

  223. Of course, in post racial America, I should have first considered the most likely scenario – Seamus simply has a strong dislike for those who waste precious city resources unnecessarily.

  224. The statements about the police having no bidness being on the property after you show them an ID with a matching address are wrong. It’s not inconceivable a person is robbing the place they just moved out of last month. In my case, I don’t live at the address on my drivers license and haven’t for about two years. The reason? I don’t give a fuck about that sort of thing. Even if you do own the house, that does not automatically mean you are legal to be there. The cops deal with things like orders of protection almost every day. They encounter lots of people that are not supposed to be at the address on their ID. It is reasonable and wise for the police to be asking if anybody else is at home when dealing with a man who is obviously a little deranged, even if temporarily. When a guy starts accusing the police of being racist because they asked to see ID when responding to a burglary call at his house…that is suspicious behavior. If I were a cop, which would never happen, I might be wondering if he is who he says he is. Is he on drugs? Does this guy have any warrants? WTF would a homeowner object to me checking his ID when I just told him why I am there? Maybe he needs my foot on the back of his scrawny university bullshit-studies faggot neck? (I don’t know many cops, so I might not be using the right language here)

    The links on this story really suck ass, but I’m sure most H&R fans have read the more detailed stories and even the pdf of the police report.

    I am conflicted by this story. After reading several accounts of statements the “professor” made, I really wish the cops would have beat him even more senseless than he already is. “Do you know who I am” deserves an ass whooping no matter who says it.

    On the other hand, I suspect those same cops are no different than all the other ones we read about that conveniently don’t notice the abuse that goes on around them. The prof might not be as big an asshole as he comes off. We’ve all seen cases where well mannered people really start to believe their own bullshit.

    Maybe it’s just my imagination, but I seem to notice (through the power of anecdotal evidence)there is a kind of Napoleon complex kind of thing going on with white looking black people such as the good professor (or Rev. Wright)? Are they overcompensating for their lack of blackness? Do Irish people do that too?

    This story is a little better than some of the others – can’t find the one I read the day this happened.
    http://www.thedailyvoice.com/voice/2009/07/henry-louis-gates-jr-is-arrest-002118.php

    “The academic, who was returning from a weeklong trip in China, attempted to enter his front door with the help of his cab driver, only to find it jammed. Professor Gates then entered his rear door with his key, turned off his alarm, and again attempted to open the front door, according to Charles Ogletree, a Harvard Law professor who is Gates’ lawyer in the case.

    Once inside the 58-year-old called the Harvard Real Estate office to report the damage to his door and requested that it be repaired immediately. While on the phone with the realtor’s office, he noticed a uniformed police officer on his front porch. When Professor Gates opened the door, the officer immediately asked him to step outside, according to his lawyer. Professor Gates remained inside his home and asked the officer why he was there. The officer said he was responding to a 911 call about a breaking and entering in progress at the address. Professor Gates informed the officer that he was a Harvard professor and lived at the residence. The officer then asked the academic if he could prove that he lived there and taught at Harvard. Gates handed both his Harvard University identification and his valid Massachusetts driver’s license to the officer. Both included Gates’ photograph, and the license included his address, according to his lawyer.

    According to Ogletree, Gates repeatedly asked the officer for his name and badge number and was never accommodated. As Professor Gates stepped onto his front porch, the officer who had been inside and who had examined his identification, said to him, “Thank you for accommodating my earlier request,” and then placed Gates under arrest. “He was handcuffed on his own front porch,” said Ogletree.

    The police report by arresting officer, Sgt. James Crowley, tells a very different story. According to the police report Gates was uncooperative from the onset and accused the officer of being a racist. When Sgt. Crowley asked Gates to identify himself he replied “Why, because I’m a black man in America,” according to the police report. The scholar continued to tell the officer “you don’t know who you’re messing with.” After failing to adhere to several warnings of unruly behavior, Gates was taken to the Cambridge Police Station, according to the police report.”

  225. Hey Tony,

    I just came by to see how everything is coming along with your studies.

    See that’s how you be a libertarian.

    English major was it? I’m glad to see that is paying off for you.

    I think my point is well illustrated in the case Eat Me v. Suck My Cock.

    Oh, boy. Look, I’m just going to go ahead, save everyone the time and trouble, and list you as a default case. Who are we kidding, right?

  226. Can we all agree that arresting a man for what seems to, with all deference to the cop’s report here (probably unwarranted for sure), that arresting a man on his own porch for, er, shouting disrespectfully, is amazingly egregious?

  227. Man Claims He Found Condom in French Onion Soup

    By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Published: July 22, 2009

    SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A man has sued a local Claim Jumper restaurant claiming he ordered French onion soup and bit into a condom instead of melted cheese. Zdenek Philip Hodousek filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Orange County Superior Court seeking unspecified damages over fears he may have contracted a disease.

    Hodousek’s attorney Eric Traut said his client wants to have restaurant employees’ DNA tested to find a match to the condom.

    A public relations firm representing Claim Jumper said no one can prove the so-called ”foreign object” Hodousek took from the restaurant is the item that was submitted to a lab for testing.

    The firm said an internal probe revealed no employee wrongdoing.

  228. MNG – fine.

  229. The only thing egregious about the arrest was dropping the charges on account of the professor’s friendship with Obama. Are we now going to argue against “disorderly conduct” being a crime? We can have that conversation, but it was a criminal offense at the time Gates was arrested.

    I will agree that the professor would not have been arrested had he been white. But that’s only because a white professor, unlike a race-obsessed “African-American Studies” professor, wouldn’t have gone on a childishly ridiculous freakout over being asked for his ID. As I said above, this prof is too wrapped up in his own BS for his own good. Sounds like he’s not too far off from the black helicopter crowd.

    Mission accomplished. He got his fifteen minutes.

  230. 1) should he have been arrested? probably not, the cop should have used some judgment, but getting screamed at just for doing your job will put anyone in a bad mood

    2) if a white or asian acted the same way towards the cops, they also would have been arrested. That does not make it right, but this was not about racism.

    3) gates is a class A, “do you know who i am?!?”, jerk. Instead of saying thanks for checking, he came completely unglued. He will milk this for a book and a 7-part PBS special

  231. I love how Henry Louis Gates — a guy with completely milquetoast views on race, read his fucking Wikipedia page — gets dismissed as a “race-obsessed” “racebaiting asshole” simply because he is a Professor of African-American Studies at Harvard.

    And of course here people who would have 100% sympathy with a white grandmother who shoots a cop on her property — now they simply don’t understand how Gates could expect any better if he dared to talk back to a police officer. Oh damn that awful socialist nanny state, but let’s get our knees and worship a police officer who needs to “keep the order” by arresting someone for talking back. I mean, shouldn’t Gates have been grateful for the cop for investigating the possible break-in?

  232. The only thing egregious about the arrest was dropping the charges on account of the professor’s friendship with Obama. Are we now going to argue against “disorderly conduct” being a crime?

    I’ll argue disorderly conduct being a crime when you are standing on your own front porch. I don’t care what color he is he had every right to be pissed and voice his opinion while standing on his own property. (I have a hard time believing race it didn’t play a role)

  233. there was no “worshiping” of the police officer, Jesse, so the rest of your post just evaporates like the intellectual fluff it is.

  234. I am conflicted by this story. After reading several accounts of statements the “professor” made, I really wish the cops would have beat him even more senseless than he already is. “Do you know who I am” deserves an ass whooping no matter who says it.

    I simply couldn’t process the above quote because I am really above it all. Or maybe I’m illiterate. I dunno. All I know is that I’m right about whatever I want to rant about. I don’t see race.

  235. it would serve Gates right if he were the victim of a burglary that the police failed to stop because they agreed with Gates’s principle that it would be out of line to insist on seeing ID under those circumstances.

    Oh I missed this too. I just must not know how to read. It’s the color-blindness.

    Of course in the real world the police officer did get Gates’s ID, it says so in the officer’s own report. The officer did not doubt that Gates was a resident of the house.

    But the officer still arrested Gates. But it’s OK, because Gates is the real racist. It’s hard to imagine that such a fine police officer might present himself in a way that justifiably annoyed Gates. Oh no, there was certainly nothing in the police report that suggested the officer was at fault. Although it was interesting how the officer just magically entered the house during the incident; somehow he neglected to describe exactly how that happened. One minute Gates is refusing to let him in, and the next minute he’s reading Gates’s ID while standing in the living room. Magic!

  236. I see someone is having a very boring late night. It must be so infuriating to not actually be able to verify the “worshiping” that never happened; that must be why the resort to juvenilia. Don’t worry, Jesse, someday you’ll grow up.

  237. Eh whatever, TAO. Replace “worshipping police officers” with “we can’t be too disappointed when a police officer decides to arrest someone who is rude to them,” and is anything so different? Forgive me my fucking rhetorical flourish.

    Multiple commenters have fantasized about bad things happening to Gates because he mouthed off to a cop. Multiple commenters have dismissed him as some kind of race hustler. You’ve given no evidence of being bothered in the slightest by this.

    On the other hand, you’ve literally left 53 comments in this thread already, so the likeliest explanation is that you just don’t sweat the small stuff. You’re above it all.

  238. Just get it clear in your head, kiddo, that I stated upfront that the arrest never should have occurred, and that I doubted the self-serving statements of both the police and Ogletree/Gates. The truth lies somewhere in between. Where I took issue was the instant leap to “RAAAAACIST” that everyone wanted to launch like a nuclear weapon.

    Apparently illiteracy isn’t just an epidemic; it’s pandemic.

  239. See, Jesse, if you look at those two quotes that you quoted as TAD, you’ll note that neither of them have a racial angle at all. Yet, magically, you found one. Shocking, I know.

  240. Wait, why are you arguing with me, TAO? Did I accuse you of saying something you didn’t say? I don’t see your name in your my comment. Did I say something about “RAAAACIST” in my comment?

    Hmmm. Truly fascinating.

    And make that 54 comments now.

  241. [You are fairly safe even swearing at an officer (as long as it’s not loudly) …]

    How are things in Mayberry, anyway?

    I was talking about the law. There are legal cases stating a citizen’s right to give cops the finger and swear at them. If that’s all you are doing and not raising your voice, then it’s hard for a DC charge to stick.

    The yelling tends to be what gets people into trouble when cops feel like being bigger douches than usual.

  242. Did I say something about “RAAAACIST” in my comment?

    Didn’t say you did. Score another one for not being able to read.

  243. As for Obama: “there is a long history in this country of African-Americans and Latinos being stopped by police disproportionately. That’s just a fact.”

    It’s also just a fact that African-Americans commit a disproportionate amount of crimes. But that’s a fact that hurts his vagina.

  244. Wait so if I didn’t say anything about “RAAACIST,” then why the fuck are you arguing with me? What’s your bone to pick?

  245. Did you or did you not mock me using that handle? And did you or did you not raise, not once but twice, the fact that I believe in colorblindness as some sort of rhetorical stick with which to beat my character?

  246. I’m pretty sure you dismissed my original comment as “intellectual fluff” before I mocked you using that handle, TAO.

    Sure, *you personally* don’t think that Gates deserved to be arrested because he mouthed off.

    So fucking what? I didn’t say you did. So why jump in and say that there’s no one here who is overly deferential the cops? Defensive much?

    Meanwhile here are the facts:

    1. Gates mouthed off to the cop.
    2. As a result, the cop put him in handcuffs and put him in jail.

    I wonder which is the greater offense?

    Oh yeah yeah, #2 is clearly worse. WE ALL AGREE. But some of us like to make dozens of comments complaining about #1, while cutting off anyone who says more than a sentence about #2.

    Because we’re colorblind, of course.

  247. See, again, with the colorblind crack. What is your deal?

    The fact remains is that, in the original post, you had some airheaded jokers fully backing up the idea that race-relations have gone nowhere since 1960, and that deep, deep down, all us white folks just think that a black guy with a Ph.D. is an “uppity nigger” and nothing’s changed.

    An unwarranted arrest is bad, but blanket statements about how nothing has changed and everyone is still bordering on being in the Klan is far worse. The police officer’s behavior can be fixed; the attitude that we’re all racists and will always be forever and ever Amen is far more pernicious.

  248. And sorry, bucko, but when you accused posters of “backing the white grandmother”, you implicitly called us all racists by implying we would not support the black person in the same endeavor. Of course, you forget the resounding support Cory Maye and Kathryn Johnston received around these parts.

    you fail.

  249. I’ll argue disorderly conduct being a crime when you are standing on your own front porch.

    And in the end I would probably agree with you. But, are there any limits? Verbal threats would be an obvious one. What about yelling hate filled obscenities? Any volume limits?

    Someone mentioned Katherine Johnson (SP?). No comparison. In that case, IIRC, the police were breaking in her house thinking it was the residence of a person who committed a consensual “crime”. That’s bullshit. In this case, the police showed up to prevent a reported property crime. That’s a real crime. They came to protect Mr Gates’ property but he was too self-absorbed for whatever reason, he lost his head.

    Off topic…I found a new favorite website:

    http://ourcoming.com/phpBB3/viewforum.php?f=18

    Now I don’t feel like such a racist.

  250. Off topic again…

    http://www.startribune.com/nation/51311982.html?elr=KArks:DCiUMEaPc:UiacyKUUr

    This is the most fucked up thing I have ever heard of. Police had to separate the white separatists from the black separatists. Can’t we just separate together?

  251. TAO — read my first comment again.

    Why do you see the “white grandmother” crack as directed at you? If you truly believe what you say you believe, then it clearly does not refer to you.

    And yet you choose to be personally offended by it.

    Because you’re colorblind.

    Fascinating.

  252. oh dear. I saw the “white grandmother” shenanigans as blatant race-baiting, which it was. you’re not going to just make this “all about TAO”, Sonny Jim. You came on to race-bait and you got called on it. Don’t get your panties in a twist, Sally.

  253. My my my. Race-baiting? We can’t any of that.

    Meanwhile:

    Can we all agree that the good professor has made an academic career out of being a racebaiting asshole

    This is totally fine. I mean, Henry Louis Gates is a black African-American Studies professor at Harvard, so by definition he has made a career of being a race-baiting asshole. This is just a colorblind, neutral assessment of the facts.

    Meanwhile we don’t know if this particular event was motivated by race. The officer says one thing, Professor Gates says another thing. The truth is somewhere in between. Would the officer have treated Gates better if Gates were white? Gates thinks so, but as outsiders who weren’t there we have no way of knowing.

    Your conclusion: race had nothing to do with it. Proof: race relations in America have improved since the 1960s. QED.

    After all, you’re neutral. And colorblind.

  254. If I were a successful black man and the cops came to the door of my own home assuming a break-in, I might have reacted angrily as well. And for the same reasons. White people like me have no idea what it’s like to deal with the day-to-day racist shit he has to deal with.
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  255. White people like me have no idea what it’s like to deal with the day-to-day racist shit he has to deal with.

    In Cambridge, Massachussetts ?

    Racial profiling only happens in backwards places like Chicago and Los Angeles. Surely that kind of stuff does not happen in enlightened cities like Cambridge.

  256. hi ,Someone mentioned Katherine Johnson (SP?). No comparison. In that case, IIRC, the police were breaking in her house thinking it was the residence of a person who committed a consensual “crime”. That’s bullshit. In this case, the police showed up to prevent a reported property crime. That’s a real crime. They came to protect Mr Gates’ property but he was too self-absorbed for whatever reason, he lost his head…
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  257. hi ,It’s also just a fact that African-Americans commit a disproportionate amount of crimes. But that’s a fact that hurts his vagina.

  258. where’s spambot when we need him/her

  259. read the wapo piece

    You mean the one where the homeowner gave permission for the policeman to come in?

    That is pretty different. Cause of the permission.

    Police need to be trained to give name and badge number on request. Every time. No excuses.

  260. anon, that’s the second time you’ve trotted out that story about shoplifting to illustrate cops being jerks.

    FAIL.

  261. And of course here people who would have 100% sympathy with a white grandmother who shoots a cop on her property — now they simply don’t understand how Gates could expect any better if he dared to talk back to a police officer.

    Some of us who think Gates acted like a douchebag also have 100% sympathy with a *black* grandmother who shoots a cop on her property, given the right circumstances (such as those involving Kathryn Johnson). And sometimes for black fathers (see Cory Maye) who shoot cops. But because we think Gates was an asshole for getting all pissy because a cop demanded to see some ID under the quite different circumstances of his case, I guess we’re racists.

  262. Of course in the real world the police officer did get Gates’s ID, it says so in the officer’s own report. The officer did not doubt that Gates was a resident of the house.

    But in the real world, Gates thought it was outrageous that the cop asked for ID. He (and mad hats) thought the cop should just be able to tell by looking at him that he was who he said he was and that he belonged there. (In his interview with The Root, Gates claims that he demanded the cop’s name and badge number so that he could file a complaint. At that time, according to Gates’s own chronology, the only thing the cop had done was (1) ask Gates to step onto the porch to answer some questions about the reported break-in, and (2) ask Gates for ID.

    So if the Cambridge police were to adopt the procedure that Gates apparently thinks they should (i.e., well-dressed black man can’t possibly be burglar, and it would be insulting to seek any further confirmation that he’s not), then it would be poetic justice if he were victimized by a burglar who fit mad hats’ profile of a Harvard professor, so that the cops didn’t bother checking the burglar’s claim.

    Oh, and mad hats, I don’t know if you are deliberately pretending to be obtuse or are really as stupid as you pretend. You read a story about poetic justice for Gates and conclude that I’m saying him it would serve him right for being black, when in fact I’m saying it would serve him right for advocating stupid policies that would lead to exactly the kind of bad outcome that I’m describing.

    (I wasted far too much time on this yesterday. I’m going to work now.)

  263. Oops. tag off

  264. So I just read the police reports:
    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0723092gates1.html

    A white cop and a hispanic cop state that Gates was acting disorderly. Judging by Gates subsequent behavior, I see little reason to doubt the accounts in the police reports.

    Gates sounds like a race masturbater. He gets off on squawking about race whenever he can.

    The cops should have just called him a psycho and left. But the disorderly conduct charge was not unusual. Many people get charged with disorderly conduct for similar behavior.

  265. JB,

    By all means, read the police report. It shows that even if you give the cop 100% credence on his account of the story, his behavior was a flagrant abuse of power. Mid-way through the report, well before the arrest, before other cops were called, and before Gates walked onto the porch the officer admits that he knew that Gates was the resident. He then called other officers because Gates was being rude. That’s it: He was being rude (even an asshole, perhaps) to an officer, which doesn’t justify escalating the situation by remaining on the property, calling other cops, and ultimately arresting the man. Once he determined that Gates was the resident, he had no reason to remain on the property — no reason whatsoever. Even the cops narrative makes clear that anything that could even remotely be called “disorderly conduct” occured long after the police determined that Gates was a resident but nonetheless decided to escalate the situation to address Gates’ “surprising” rudeness (quote from the report — he was apparently “surprised” that a private citizen had the audacity to be rude to him, and he wanted to address this slight). And this is all assuming that you accept the cop’s version of the story.

    All that said, Gates was probably being a dick. But that’s not illegal. We’re allowed to call cops racists (even unfairly), particularly on our own property. If we don’t have the right to criticize abuses of state power, even when we’re wrong, then we have absolutely nothing. Being rude to a cop, politician, or other state authority is the very essence of your First Amendment right.

  266. He then called other officers because Gates was being rude.

    Wrong. Go read them again:
    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0723092gates1.html

    The other cops were already on their way. It’s very unusual not to have back-up. Especially for a call like that where you are most likely confronting robbery suspects (most people aren’t breaking down their own door).

    I think most DC charges are a bunch of crap, but this was not that unusual from most of them. So if you don’t like this one, then you should be bitching about the rest of them too. This has little to do with race (the officer in question teaches a racial profiling class at the academy and gave CPR to Reggie Lewis) and more to due with cops having a thin-skin and abusing the bullshit charge of DC. Gates was being a douche and is himself very thin-skinned, but the officer should have just left.

    I’ve had friends on multiple occasions facing DC charges and been threatened with them myself for bullshit reasons. I’ve been threatened with DC for a lot less than Gates did.

  267. I’ve read some of Gates’s scholarly stuff, and it all seemed pretty sensible and well-informed. I don’t know why people are saying that he’s made a career of racebaiting, like he’s an Afrocentrist or Al Sharpton or something.

    So if he says he picked up on a vibe of racism from this cop, I think his suspicion has some credibility. Also, I’ll give greater than 50% odds on any given white cop being racist against blacks, just as a matter of statistical tendencies. So I’d be willing to bet a small sum of cash that the cop had some significant racist motives at work.

    But I think there’s no real need to posit racist motives. Given that Gates aggressively asserted his rights against the cop and openly voiced his suspicions of racism, it seems all but inevitable that the cop would try to arrest him on some bullshit charge.

  268. Wow!! I never thought that this will be such a big news. It went from Gates arrest to Obama apalogy. This has become more interesting than what I thought. So, I collected all the sites or articles (more than 250 sites or articles) related to this hot topic “Cambridge Police Unit Demands Apology from Obama”. If you are interested take a look at news, video coverage, people views and reviews on this topic at the below link.
    http://markthispage.blogspot.com/2009/07/all-about-cambridge-police-unit-demands.html

  269. if you’re a white woman walking by and you think you’re witnessing a break-in, you’re probably a racist cunt. Sorry. The cop was probably just a generic “You must worship me and bow down before me” cop asshole, but the lady caller was a racist bitch.

    Now that the tape has been released, I wonder if Fluffy would like to apologize for what he said about Lucia Whelan.

  270. hello Once I prove it’s my house you can get the fuck off my lawn. It’s bad enough you’re expected to kiss a cop’s ass when you get pulled over.

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  272. I’ve read some of Gates’s scholarly stuff, and it all seemed pretty sensible and well-informed. I don’t know why people are saying that he’s made a career of racebaiting, like he’s an Afrocentrist or Al Sharpton or something.

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