18
   

Who Blew It? President Obama, Professor Gates or Sgt. Crowley

 
 
Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 06:08 pm
I still find it amusing that Sgt. Crowley is "QUOTE . UNQUOTE" a racial profiling expert.

No doubt this incident will not cause a race riot and Dr. Gates will write another book and cry all the way to the bank. There is gold in them thar hills.
0 Replies
 
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 07:26 pm
Well, I would guess the President serves peanuts with the beers at the Whitehouse. Or, pretzels? Hopefully, everyone gets a Whitehouse mug as a memento.
Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 03:34 am
@Foofie,
Foofie White House coffee mugs are available from $7 to $12 from the White House gift shop.

I'd love to be a fly on the wall at this particular gathering.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 11:22 am
@Sglass,
A further thought on all this (I'm still mixed on Crowley's motivation, that my instinct for it may be wrong) - it is a mild surprise to me that one's porch is not part of one's house. I haven't seen a photo, so I don't know, perhaps it was a concrete landing and not a porch per se. I do understand that a private front yard is still usually in public view and that police could conceivably be defended for arresting if the suspect is physically abusive to them, or inciting a crowd to somehow join in the fray, but I'm stuck on the matter of the "porch". Our porches are still our castles... or are they?
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 11:32 am
@ossobuco,
ossobuco wrote:

but I'm stuck on the matter of the "porch". Our porches are still our castles... or are they?


They're not part of the square footage. Not that this is the deciding factor.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 11:35 am
@maporsche,
Right, I remember about that for insurance purposes. I seem to remember that about basements too, though. I'm guessing that since no one else has mentioned this in a zillion articles or posts that I'm wrong.. I'm just surprised.
Vietnamnurse
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 04:16 pm
@ossobuco,
Ossobuco, Hi! Long time away....I think the circumstances are mostly in favor of Gates. He was tired from a long trip to China and couldn't get into his house. Not his fault and not the neighbor who reported a breaking and entering. He had ID and it should have been enough. It has been all over the news and net that Skip got haughty...weelllll. Black and a Harvard professor showing ID and the officer with knowledge of how to deal with racial incidents? Hmmm. Both out of control? Cop needed to back off and not handcuff him. That is why Obama made the "stupidly" statement. Anyone black here? I am certain that both Gates and Obama have faced these situations. Obama sponsored legislation in Illinois just about this problem of racial profiling. Cambridge is well known as a hotbed with the police and blacks according to friends from there. I think Skip thought it couldn't happen to him...it did and it made Obama blink.
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 08:04 pm
@Vietnamnurse,
Vietnamnurse wrote:

Anyone black here?


Why would someone's race matter?
0 Replies
 
Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 08:05 pm
@Vietnamnurse,
I can remember having to go out and get a taxi for my boss , who was a gentleman of color, at the telephone company . I had called Checker and when the cab arrived and saw his fare was black, he drove off. He was wearing a three piece suit carrying a brief case. I doubt if Boston/Cambridge will ever recover from being intergrated.

Whatever Gates and the President do, it will be a move to improve race relations.

As you stated Vnurse Dr. Gates had just touched ground from a long flight from China, tired and probably irritable. He has had a hip replacement and still uses a cane.
Vietnamnurse
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 08:15 pm
@Sglass,
Who knows what was said...but I do know one thing. Sgt. Crowley may regret the things he said and Gates also, but to handcuff him and take him from his home was wrong. Too much past history of race relations in that city, no matter the amount of training by the police. Crowley apparently had been trained to not react and to try to ameliorate situations such as this. He is not a bad person and I don't think Obama meant that. It may be a learning situation. Dr. Gates is one of the most respected black intellectuals in America...as is William Julius Wilson...also at Harvard and was brought there from the U. of Chicago by Gates. I know Bill Wilson well...we were neighbors. He has told my husband and I many stories of driving while black, walking while black, etc. Some things we just don't get unless we are in the other person's shoes.
Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jul, 2009 08:34 pm
@Vietnamnurse,
I've had the privilege of meeting Dr. Gates. My godson, who is black, graduated from Harvard with a degree in African American studies and religion. My godson is presently working in NYC as a hedge fund manager until he enters Yale law school.

What Crowley did was stupid as far as I am concerned.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 02:42 am
From today's Boston Herald (July 27, 2009, page A2):
Quote:
“This woman is 100 percent clear on what she said,” said attorney Wendy J. Murphy, who is representing 911 caller Lucia Whalen. “She never said she saw two black men. She said, ‘It never crossed my mind that there were two black men.’ ”

In fact, Whalen, who wants the world to know she is not a racist, isn’t even white " as had been widely reported but has “olive colored skin and is of Portuguese descent,” Murphy said.
[...]

In the police report, Crowley says Whalen told him she saw “two black males with backpacks on the porch.”
[...]
In the police report, Crowley says Whalen told him she saw “two black males with backpacks on the porch.”

People who have come to the defense of the veteran cop have noted that Crowley did not presume the “suspect” was black, but rather

told so. Reached yesterday evening by phone, Crowley said, “Obviously, I stand behind everything that’s in the police report. It wouldn’t be in there if it wasn’t true.”

Crowley had kind words for Whalen.

“I can’t even imagine what she must be going through,” he said. “I’ve often thought about her, and I regret . . . the undue attention on her.”

Gates’ friend, fellow Harvard professor and attorney, Charles Ogletree, was stunned by Whalen’s claim.

“Oh my God,” he said yesterday afternoon.

“It’s just breathtaking to hear that. It’s just another incredible wrinkle in this never-ending saga.”
[...]


Online report: Gates case shocker

0 Replies
 
Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:08 am
Thanks Walter. I am so very curious as to whether the Cambridge Police will release the 911 report and whether it will clear Whalen of commenting on the race of the men breaking into Dr. Gates home . The only thing she can be held accountable for is being a responsible citizen.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:27 am
@Sglass,
What I just read in the NYT is that there seems to be agreement that she didn't say anything about the race of the two men she thought were breaking in on the 911 call; but Crowley says she told him that when he consulted with her upon arrival.

Quote:
Contrary to what has been widely reported, police officials say neither the 911 caller nor the initial dispatch on July 16 said anything about black suspects. Sgt. James M. Crowley’s initial response was to a bare-bones report of a crime in process in a neighborhood that had seen 23 cases of breaking and entering so far this year, many during daylight hours. Only on the porch did he hear from the 911 caller, on the sidewalk, that she believed the two men " one of whom had left " were black, according to the police report. Seconds later, Sergeant Crowley saw Prof. Henry Louis Gates Jr. in the foyer of his house.


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/27/us/27gates.html
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:31 am
@Sglass,
But in fact, they WERE two black men. I'm not racist, but if I saw two black men forcing a door - would I be considered racist if I called the police and said, 'I see two men forcing a door' - and then when I was asked for a description, supplied the correct information that they were, in fact, black?

This is going from the ridiculous to the sublime (or sublime to ridiculous - whichever way you want to look at it).

Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:48 am
@aidan,
Separating the wheat from the chafe can be a real bitch for the media when looking for the truth. Your comments are well taken with me . I could add

The whole world is a stage and are we the judges or the audience?

Sglass
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:55 am
@sozobe,
I just read the NYT report that the 911 call did not mention race.

0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 06:57 am
@Sglass,
Well, I guess we can't know unless she'd called up and said, 'Two white men are forcing a door' in a neighborhood where 23 break-ins had occurred in recent months, and the cops assumed they were replacing the door and didn't respond.

Who knows - all I know is if I saw two guys forcing a door (without a commercial van in the driveway or box of tools on the porch floor) - I'd call the cops. And if my neighbors saw it happening at my house - I'd hope they would call the cops.
And the race of the people on either side of the equation is meaningless in a situation like this.

Hopefully Gates has taken a deep breath and a step back and has given a thought about what people were doing for him - not TO him.
The woman was trying to help protect his home and material goods.
I think it's pitiful that she feels she has to explain that she's not even white (but Portuguese) so that people will understand or think that means she's less likely to be racist.

0 Replies
 
Yankee
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 07:00 am
As much as some of you might really want this to be about race, it is not.

The police officers actions against Mr. Gates was not based on race but attitude of Mr. Gates.

Who blew it? Well, Mr. Gates blew it and Obama blew it up bigger than it needed to be.
panzade
 
  2  
Reply Mon 27 Jul, 2009 07:28 am
@Yankee,
I agree with your post completely, and I will add that Obama's mea culpa was disingenuous when he said he should have "calibrated " his response. I hate that word when used by a president.
0 Replies
 
 

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