President Obama doesn't seem to understand what all the fuss is about over his comments Wednesday night that Cambridge Police acted "stupidly" in their arrest of Professional Agitator...oh, excuse me...esteemed Harvard professor, Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
I cringed the moment he said it. It was inappropriate to say the least, and not even remotely accurate.
In fact, as I mentioned in yesterday's blog, the only one who acted stupidly was Gates himself--even resorting to a "mama" reference and sounding like a pouting 10-year-old.
Well today the heat continues--not on the arresting officer--but on the President himself. While many seemed to be demanding an apology from Sergeant Crowley for doing his job, it seems a more appropriate apology would come from the White House.
But don't hold your breath. White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs was already trying to spin the comment around!! You see, the President wasn't calling the police STUPID!! NAH!! He just said they were acting STUPIDLY!! See the difference??
David Holway, the President of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers said, "The president's alienated public safety officers across the country with his comments."
True. But that's only tens of thousands of people. At least he didn't offend his friend, Professor Gates, right?
As I theorized on my show yesterday...I believe that Gates WANTED a confrontation. He WANTED it to end like this. Think about it. Gates has made a career, literally, out of racial tension in America. Would he really have preferred this interaction to end with a pat on the officer's back and the kind words "Thanks for coming by to check it out! You guys keep us safe out there and we appreciate it!"
It COULD have ended that way. Actually if it had been 90% of people out there, that IS how it would have ended. But some people HAVE to believe the worst in people. They HAVE to believe that the bogeyman of racism, sexism, and homophobia (wonder why no one is ever guilty of Christianphobia?) is ever present around every corner.
I make the argument that Gates himself demonstrated more racism by a) fixating so much on the race of the officer, and b) fixating as he ALWAYS has on his OWN skin color. To turn a typical police reaction to a call regarding a break-in into a disgraceful act of bigotry is LUDICROUS.
I hope the pressure mounts on Gates to own up to his childish and idiotic behavior, as well as the President for his inappropriate criticism of the police.
Maybe both of these men could apologize to the police. And to all of us as well.