July 20, 2009

Being black in America is awesome, right Dr Gates?

Why, of course it is! Just look at this story!

Henry Louis Gates Jr. Is Arrested at His Own Home by Police Investigating a Break-In

Henry Louis Gates Jr., a prominent scholar in black studies and the director of Harvard University’s W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research, was arrested at his own home in Cambridge, Mass., last week by police officers investigating a possible break-in.

The Boston Globe reported that Mr. Gates had locked himself out of his house but managed to get back inside when Cambridge police officers arrived there on Thursday afternoon. He was handcuffed, taken into police custody, and, according to the Cambridge police log, booked for disorderly conduct after “exhibiting loud and tumultuous behavior.”

The Globe’s account quotes friends of Mr. Gates as saying that he had showed the police his driver’s license and Harvard identification card. But an Associated Press account of the incident quotes a police report as saying that Mr. Gates had refused to identify himself, had called one of the police officers a racist, and had complained, “This is what happens to black men in America.”

Mr. Gates, who has attracted a dream team of academic talent to Harvard, is being represented by Charles Ogletree, a professor at the Harvard Law School.

But Mr Gates, WHY ON EARTH would the police do this to you? Aren't they our FRIENDS?

Gates told the officer that he was being targeted because "I'm a black man in America.''

Also from the Boston Globe article,

Friends of Gates said he was already in his home when police arrived. He showed his driver’s license and Harvard identification card, but was handcuffed and taken into police custody for several hours last Thursday, they said.

The police report said Gates was arrested after he yelled at the investigating officer repeatedly inside the residence then followed the officer outside, where Gates continued to upbraid him. "It was at that time that I informed Professor Gates that he was under arrest,'' the officer wrote in the report.

Gates, 58, declined to comment today when reached by phone.

The arrest of such a prominent scholar under what some described as dubious circumstances shook some members of the black Harvard community.

“He and I both raised the question of if he had been a white professor, whether this kind of thing would have happened to him, that they arrested him without any corroborating evidence,” said S. Allen Counter, a Harvard Medical School professor who spoke with Gates about the incident Friday. “I am deeply concerned about the way he was treated, and called him to express my deepest sadness and sympathy."

What do you call the intelligent, well-off, respected black man with a Ph.D, Harvard education...

Lulz, maybe I shouldn't be so mad at CNN for their "Black In America" specials from now on?

Edyt: In a nice gesture from the kindly ol' white man, charges have been dropped.

BOSTON – Prosecutors dropped a disorderly conduct charge Tuesday against prominent black scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr., who was arrested at his home near Harvard University after a report of a break-in.

The city of Cambridge issued a statement saying the arrest "was regrettable and unfortunate" and police and Gates agreed that dropping the charge was a just resolution.

"This incident should not be viewed as one that demeans the character and reputation of professor Gates or the character of the Cambridge Police Department," the statement said.

Supporters say Gates — the director of Harvard's W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research — was the victim of racial profiling.

Oh fuck you anyway, for good measure.

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