America elected Barack Obama president on the presumption that he was a post-racial candidate. But in responding to a question about a police incident involving a Harvard professor, the president exposed himself as a radical who perceives any encounter with the police by a black man as a racial injustice.
As laid out in a Cambridge, Mass., police report on the July 16 incident, the facts are fairly clear. A neighbor of professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. called the police to report what she described as two black men on Gates’ porch. One of the men appeared to be “wedging his shoulder into the door as if he was trying to force entry.”
The officer, Sgt. James Crowley, responded to a police dispatch at 12:44 p.m. and spotted Gates through a window in the door. Speaking through the door, he asked whether Gates would step onto the porch and speak with him. Since others may be in the house, this is a standard police precaution to ensure the safety of the officer.
“No I will not,” the meticulously written report quotes Gates as saying.
Just then, officer Carlos Figueroa, a Latino, walked up. From that point on, his report verifies Gates’ version of events.
Gates demanded to know who the policeman was. “Sergeant Crowley from the Cambridge Police,” the uniformed officer said.
Gates then opened the front door and said, “Why, because I’m a black man in America?”
Crowley asked whether anyone else was in the house. Yelling at Crowley, Gates told him “it was none of my business and accused me of being a racist officer,” Crowley’s report says.
Crowley assured Gates that he was investigating a report by a concerned citizen and that she was outside as they spoke. But Gates picked up a cordless phone, dialed a number, and said into the phone, “Get the chief,” and “What’s the chief’s name?” Gates told the person on the other end that he was dealing with a racist police officer. Gates then turned to Crowley and said that the officer had no idea who he was “messing” with.
Although Crowley said in the report that he was led to believe Gates was the lawful resident of the house, the officer noted that Gates' behavior surprised and confused him. He asked Gates for photo identification to verify that he was indeed the resident of the house so he could radio his findings back to the police.
Since a burglar could lie about being a resident, asking for identification is standard procedure when investigating a possible break in.
Gates refused and asked for Crowley’s identification. He finally produced his Harvard University ID. As Crowley radioed his findings, Gates began to yell over him and “leveled threats that I wasn’t someone to mess with,” wrote Crowley, whom the police union describes as a respected veteran supervisor.
For the third time, Gates asked Crowley for his name. Crowley asked Gates to step outside if he had any further questions. Outside, Gates continued to yell at him, drawing the attention of alarmed passersby, Crowley said.
Pulling out his handcuffs, Crowley warned Gates to calm down. As Gates continued to yell at the officer, Crowley told him he was being disorderly. When Gates refused to subsist, Crowley placed him under arrest, saying in his police report that the professor exhibited “loud and tumultuous behavior in a public place.”
Gates, who is director of Harvard’s W.E.B. DuBois Institute for African and African-American Research, later said he brought up race but was not disorderly. He asked for an apology.
With one major exception, the press gleefully leapt at the chance to report the incident, usually without including the damning details in the police report, the basis for any crime story. The exception was The Washington Post, which has become an eminently fair newspaper since Katharine Weymouth, its new publisher, appointed Marcus Brauchli executive editor in September.
Saying he is a white man married to a black woman, Washington Post reporter Neely Tucker wrote in the paper’s Style section that he had a similar situation at his home a few months ago. His home alarm went off erroneously at 2 a.m., and two police officers showed up in the predominantly white Washington area neighborhood.
“The first thing they did was ask me to step outside,” Tucker wrote. “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.”
After Tucker showed them his driver’s license with his address, they asked whether anyone else was inside. They then asked if they could look around the place.
“I was irritable in that middle-of-the-night kind of way, but it did not occur to me that they might be picking on us, the salt-and-pepper couple on the block,” Tucker said. “What occurred to me was that they got a call about a home alarm going off and they had to secure the premises before they could leave. And I was thrilled to have them search the entire house, because my wife's 9-year-old daughter was murdered in a home invasion in Silver Spring six years ago. The police came running then, too, but it was too late.”
The officers swept every room of the house, including the closets. They checked the back yard as well.
“They came back to the front door, these young white cops, and assured my African-American wife that there were no bad men in the house or on the property, and that we were safe,” Tucker said. “And then they left.”
Tucker’s bottom line: “One of the common-sense rules of life can be summed up this way: ‘Don’t mess with cops.’ It doesn’t matter if you are right, wrong, at home or on the street, or if you are white, black, Hispanic, Jewish, Muslim, or whatever. When an armed law enforcement officer tells you to cease and desist, the wise person (a) ceases and (b) desists.”
When asked at Wednesday’s press conference what the incident says about race relations in America, Obama inappropriately chose to give his version of the incident and sided squarely with Gates against the police. Saying he is a friend of Gates and may be “a little biased,” Obama said that as he understands it, when he police showed up, Gates was already in his house.
“The police officer comes in,” Obama said. “I’m sure there’s some exchange of words. But my understanding is — is that professor Gates then shows his ID to show that this is his house, and at that point he gets arrested for disorderly conduct, charges which are later dropped.”
Having ignored the police report, Obama said that, without knowing all the facts, he can’t say what “role race played in that. But I think it’s fair to say, number one, any of us would be pretty angry; number two, that the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home.”
Then Obama cited the history of blacks and Hispanics “being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately . . . and even when there are honest misunderstandings, the fact that blacks and Hispanics are picked up more frequently, and often time for no cause, casts suspicion even when there is good cause.”
In saying that, Obama ignored the unfortunate fact that blacks account for four times more violent crimes than people of other races. By deliberately shading the facts to side with Gates, Obama showed that there was indeed a reason why he selected the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr., as his mentor for 20 years.
The man that Obama described as being like an uncle blamed America and whites for starting the AIDS virus to kill off blacks, training professional killers, importing drugs, and creating a racist society to oppress blacks.
“The government gives them drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law, and then wants to sing ‘God Bless America.’ No, no, no, not ‘God Bless America’ — God damn America,” Wright has said.
Obama’s message to law enforcement officers who risk their lives every day to protect us is equally disturbing: Regardless of the truth, if you do your job and impartially enforce the law but a suspect is black, you may not have the support of your own government, and you may in fact face ridicule by the president in a prime-time press conference. That message to go easy on blacks jeopardizes the safety of all Americans, white and black.
Just as the press refused to report Obama’s link to Wright for more than a year during the campaign, it is now covering up for Obama by suppressing the online police report recounting this ugly incident.
Ronald Kessler is chief Washington correspondent of Newsmax.com. View his previous reports and get his dispatches sent to you free via
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