Have you seen the photo of Henry Louis Gates Jr. taken by a neighbor? Gates of course is the director of Harvard University’s W.E.B. Dubois Institute for African and African American Research. He was arrested at his home in Cambridge, Mass. Police say they were called to the home of Gates after a woman reported seeing a man try to pry open the front door. As we all know, it turned out to be him breaking into his own house because he had lost his keys. President Obama was asked about it during the press conference on Wednesday night and he said the police acted stupidly…. You know we worried about how experienced this man was before he became president and Obama showed he’s a not a ready for prime time player.
Maybe it is me, but if I were trying to sell the nation on a plan to take over a $2.4 trillion a year healthcare system, I would have avoided getting into a he said/he said battle between Police Sgt. James Crowley and Professor Gates — or Skip, as the president calls him.
President Obama ended his fourth prime-time press conference in his first 6 months by saying, in answer to a question from his hometown reporter Lynn Sweet:
“I don’t know, not having been there and not seeing all the facts, what role race played in that [Gates case]. 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; and, number three, what I think we know separate and apart from this incident is that there’s a long history in this country of African-Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately. That’s just a fact.”
Ok follow me here…The Man is The President of The United States of America, should he be commenting on an incident, as he said, not being there and not knowing all of the facts? Who does that? Who makes a comment accusing an officer and police department of being stupid and suggests that it was racially motivated, without knowing the facts? Does this sound like a President of the United States? It doesn’t!….Bill Cosby sounded more like an American President than Barrack Obama when he said on a Boston radio station this week: “This is a road we need not go down.”
What was pitched to the media as a six month report card on his job performance really was a press conference on healthcare. President Obama wanted to turn big public opposition to his plan and get the message out on health care.
Way to shout down your own message, Mr. President.
For his part, Sgt. Crowley defended himself but did not knock the President.
Where did this question during the press conference come from? Someone broke the rule and asked a non-healthcare question! That person was Lynn Sweet, a very savvy Chicago political reporter who knows Obama’s sensitivities from his Illinois state Senate days when he worked on racial profiling issues, asked the president, seemingly strangely, about a recent disorderly conduct arrest in Cambridge, Mass. On the surface that issue would not seem to merit attention as one of only 11 questions at a nationally-televised White House news conference with the president of the United States.
However, as Sweet well knew, the arrestee was black…a respected academic. Also — here’s the key — a friend of Obama’s. The officer was white. It was late at night. Apparently a neighbor saw someone in a T-shirt breaking into a nearby home. It happened to be the key-less owner himself, but who knew then?
A softball that Obama swung at and hit into foul territory.
Let’s see, Sarah Palin… Joe the Plumber… clinging to guns… clinging to religion… now, Sgt. Crowley.
Is it just me, or is there a pattern here?
Then again, Barack Obama spent 3 years in Cambridge when he was in law school, so maybe he knows something I don’t. But, speaking of acting stupidly, wading into this controversy was not a very brilliant move.
Finally on Friday, President Obama apologized. Did you notice how reluctant it was? The political heat became too hot! No one was talking about healthcare. Everyone was talking about a decorated police officer from Cambridge who was doing his job and following protocol yet, the President Of The United States Of America called him Stupid…
It’s not that stupid is a harsh word or that stupid is dramatically hurtful. It’s that this is the President of The United States calling one of America’s finest Stupid! My liberal friends loved to use the words “Bush League”, when W made a gaffe or did not speak well…this is so far beyond “Bush League,” it’s off the charts bad!
I cannot believe that there is not more outrage over the President calling one of America’s finest…Stupid.
A beer at the Whitehouse will now apparently fix the whole problem. If I were Sgt. Crowley I would’ve said; “Apology accepted, however on the invite…thanks, but no thanks!”
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