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Mar 24th
Home Columns A Cup O' Kapeng Barako A “Stupid” Comment, a “Stupid” Cop … and a very “Stupid” Arrest
A “Stupid” Comment, a “Stupid” Cop … and a very “Stupid” Arrest PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - A Cup O' Kapeng Barako
Friday, 31 July 2009 16:46

Y’ all heard about it, right?  About the arrest last week of Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Harvard’s most-prominent professor and scholar of African-American studies, by a Cambridge, Massachusetts, white cop … and when President Barack Obama was asked to comment about it, said that that cop “ACTED STUPIDLY.”


I agree.  It was a stupid act!  The cop who made the arrest was stupid! He’s also a racist!


According to news reports, Prof. Gates, who has taught in Harvard for 20 years or so, arrived at his home from a trip in China to find his front door jammed.  So, the professor asked his limo driver to help him force the door open.


Well, as the story goes, a neighbor who saw them thought they were breaking in to rob the place and called cops.


The professor was already inside his home for several minutes … when this cop, a sergeant, showed up at the front door.  The professor told the police sergeant that he lived there … and he showed his Massachusetts driver’s license and Harvard faculty ID card to prove it.  Harvard University was just around the corner of the professor’s house.


But the cop, Sgt. James Crowley, did not believe what the professor said that that was his home … and that according to the professor, the sergeant stepped passed him, and entered his house, “without his permission” and began looking around for evidence of forced entry and robbery.


Now, ain’t that stupid?  How could this cop NOT believe that?  The professor’s address is documented right there on the driver’s license …  and I don’t think the professor would look like a criminal to anybody, especially to a cop like Sgt. Crowley, who has been a cop for 11 years.  Unless, of course, Cambridge allows morons to become cops and stay as cops in their town that long.


So, the professor got mad at this cop and started yelling at him, demanding that the cop get out of his house.  Perhaps the professor was so upset of the fact that the unwelcomed cop was inside his house, suspecting him of being a criminal, despite of the two IDs that he showed the cop, identifying him as a Harvard faculty member and the occupant of that house, which was owned by Harvard University.


So in frustration, the professor called Sgt. Crowley a “racist.”  And Crowley, the cop, didn’t like one bit being yelled at and being called a “racist” that he radioed for a “back-up” to arrest the professor, describing the professor as “belligerent” and “uncooperative,” then saying to the dispatcher “to keep the cars coming.”


Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is 5-foot-7.  He weighs 150 pounds.  He wears glasses.  He’s got a limp.  He uses a cane.  His mustache and goatee are graying.  He’s 58-years old.  And, looks it.


And this police sergeant, who looks like he’s in his physical prime, had to radio for a back-up in arresting the professor, and telling the police dispatcher “to keep the cars coming”?


To keep the cars coming?  Now, that tells me that Sgt. Cowley is either a real stupid cop … or a coward.  How many more back-ups did he need to arrest an undersized, diminutive, crippled man?


And why would he arrest someone who yelled at him in his own home and called him a racist?  Sgt. Crowley is truly a stupid cop.  That’s not enough grounds for arrest.  And that’s the reason why the disorderly-conduct charges that was filed against the professor were dropped by prosecutors.  They were just stupid charges concocted by a stupid cop.


You know, shortly after I’ve retired from the Navy, I became a cop in Florida.  A deputy sheriff in Martin County.  I have worked in the jail.  And I have worked in the streets. Working in those two environments, you quickly learn who are “the scumbags” (a police lingo) and who are the law-abiding citizens.


S ad to say but true, but most of the calls that we had to respond to, involved mostly, black people.  And the jails are usually populated by more blacks and Hispanics than whites.  So, if you’re not careful, you can easily get screwed-up in the mind and developed an assumption that criminal wrongdoings are mainly perpetuated by blacks and other minorities.


And believe me or not, I have seen a lot of “racists” among fellow cops that I’ve worked with.  Whether they were racists or not, I am not really sure.  They were buddies of mine and most of them are really good people.  I’ve got their backs and they got my back.  But I noticed that when dealing with blacks, these buddies of mine exude a different attitude.


They are more aggressive.  They are rougher.  They are more ready to pounce on them. And they were quicker to make their arrests.  But when dealing with whites, these fellow cops showed more kindness and empathy.


Now … if you’re going me to ask me what would I’ve done if I were the cop who answered that robbery in progress call to the house of the professor?  Well, right off the bat, I’ll know right away that the professor didn’t belong to the “scumbag” class.


And the two IDs that the professor would have shown me would have been enough for me to quickly call dispatch to tell ‘em that the call was a bum call and that there was no robbery at all and everything was 10-4 . . . 


But Sgt. Crowley did not see that.  He couldn’t differentiate.  He only saw a Black Man … and therefore a “scumbag” in his eyes.


Let me quote here excerpts from the column last week of one of my favorite columnists: Leonard Pitts, Jr.  He’s black man and a Pulitzer Prize winner columnist and I think he provided the best insight to this “incident.”


He said: “It’s important to see Gates – scholar, author, documentarian, Harvard University professor and African-American man – because that’s what Sgt. James Crowley of Cambridge, Massachusetts Police DID NOT DO in the July 16 confrontation that has ignited debate about racial bias in the U.S. “justice” system.”


In other words, that cop only saw his own perception of a black man and nothing else ...  He couldn’t differentiate a “scumbag” from the law-abiding and educated citizen.


To Mr. Pitts, Sgt. Crowley is a racist.  I agree.  President Obama said, he “acted stupidly.”  I agree with that, too.  JJ


PS: When I wrote this story, the three: President Obama, Professor Gates and Police Sergeant Crowley were having a beer in the Rose Garden of the White House, talking “calmly” about what happened.  News reporters were not allowed to get close and overhear their conversation.  For the record, they reported though that the President sipped Bud Lights, the professor had Sam Adams Light, and the police sergeant gulped Blue Moon.  Blue Moon is the favorite beer of Rednecks.  Cheers . . .   



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Last Updated on Friday, 31 July 2009 16:53
Comments (1)
1 Saturday, 01 August 2009 11:08
Indeed, the act (of arresting Gates) was stupid. Sgt. Crowley was stupider.

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