Don Lemon from CNN spoke with several police officers who, unlike President Obama, don’t believe Sgt James Crowley “acted stupidly” in the confrontation with and eventual arrest of Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.
As you might recall, Sgt. James Crowley of the Cambridge, Massachusetts Police Department was called out to a report from a neighbor that someone appeared to be breaking into Professor Gates’ home. When Crowley arrived, he learned that it was Gates, and that Gates had apparently locked himself outside his own home. When Crowley attempted to verify his identity (as any good cop would), Gates came unglued and claimed Crowley was a racist. He was very uncooperative and ended up being arrested for disturbing the peace.
Without checking all the facts, President Obama said publicly later that day that the police had “acted stupidly.” Gates is a friend and campaign contributor of Obama’s.
Late last Friday afternoon, we heard that Obama had called Crowley and “acknowledged his mistake.” That was good and right of President Obama to do, especially after maligning Sgt Crowley and smearing the police in general, but I have yet to hear Obama publicly apologize as I heard him publicly accuse the police of “act[ing] stupidly.”
Crowley’s fellow officers who support his actions during this incident are both black and white, male and female. Unlike some others in our society, they can apparently see beyond skin color to evaluate the facts of a situation and the merits of a decision.
Kelly King, a black female officer, said there had been a rush to judgment, and that Professor Gates had thrown up a smokescreen by bringing race into this, when it had nothing to do with it. She said that she had voted for President Obama, but will not again. She stated Obama should have said, “I support my friend but I don’t have all the facts. I won’t weigh in yet.”
That’s fair, isn’t it? Why was that too much to ask of the president of the United States?