Saturday, July 25, 2009

Even if Henry Louis Gates' Arresting Officer Is Right, He Was Wrong

The wisdom in this story also applies to teachers who get a little too hot under the collar when children get cranky.

Even if Henry Louis Gates' Arresting Officer Is Right, He Was Wrong
July 24, 2009
By Robert Schlesinger
US News and World Report

Assume for a moment that Cambridge Police Officer James Crowley is telling the absolute truth in his incident report and subsequent press appearances and that Henry Louis Gates is lying about the events that led to the Harvard professor's arrest. Assume for a moment that when Crowley showed up at Gates' home, Gates was belligerent, angry, immediately started in on race and racism and made a "your mama" comment. Assume that he spouted inanities to the effect that Crowley didn't know who he was "messing" with. Assume that when Crowley, satisfied that Gates did in fact live in the home and so was in fact not burglarizing it, started to leave Gates kept yelling at him.

Even if all of that is true ... Crowley was still wrong arresting Gates. "The professor at any time could have resolved the issue by quieting down and/or going back inside the house," Crowley said in a radio interview. Maybe so. But Crowley could also have resolved by rolling his eyes at the cranky--but not criminal--professor, getting back in his car and driving away...

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