I realize President Obama has been placed in an awkward position by right wing talk shows because he spoke the truth– Professor Henry Louis Gates was treated by police in a racist manner. I am a 78 year old white haired white man. About several months ago, I was working downstairs and when I came up stairs to get a cup of coffee I realized the front door was not locked and my wallet was gone. I called the police to report a burglary. About ten minutes later, there was a knock on the door. I opened it and began speaking in an excited voice about the wallet. At no time did the two policemen ask for any ID from me. Actually, I could have been the burglar but they realized the old white haired man was upset. They calmed me down and then one of the police examined my cluttered table and found the wallet. We all laughed.

My behavior was akin to that of Professor Gates. I was upset, distraught, and slightly out of emotional control. The police calmed me down. An elderly man who is upset is not a physical threat to anyone, certainly I was not anymore a threat to the police than was Professor Gates. We laughed. My question is why was there the absence of laughter in this situation? It could have avoided having the nation have one more item for its silly season.

  • Nathan

    Plese read the arrest report. Then you will understand.

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    I spoke with several of my students who are members of the St. Louis Police Department. As one put it, “we all make mistakes.”

  • omar

    Thank you for this bit of sanity sir. That you as a white man is speaking on this matter with objective clarity eases some of my pains and worries. It is shameful how rabidly conservative white americans (and black americans) are searching for excuses to justify a racist act nd blame the victim. It was stupi what those police did. The judge thought so to which is why the case was thrown out. That the police were mistaken is not in question. There are no smart mistakes only stupid ones. The police acted stupidly. The source of their tupidity was their pathologicl fear of black men. Why did it take seven cops to arrest one unarmed middle aged physically disabled, man in his own home AFTER he had established hism identity and proven his innocence. This does not happen to white people. I am proud of Mr. Stopsky for against this. I am ashamed of ALL the white americans clinging to their obselete racist ideas.
    It’s a disgraceful day in America. I am proud that my President is at least providing a good example by denouncing racism.

  • police4h

    So you say that you are white and so u must be a CRAKERyou are a fake,,, you see!!! your a great example of an ignorant citizen. what cops are you talking about ? perhaps, you have a long record or maybe you are in prison typing this TRASH!! but the fact is your opinion is so STUPID,especially how you pretend to be someone your not! I see that you dont like white police officers, well a whatever color the police force may be they are defending us and putting there life on the line EVERY DAY! I think you should respect the police officers… and for Obama wait 3 and a half more years , then you will get your change……..

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    1. I teach police officers on the topic of “the history of crime.” I have the greatest respect for any police officer as well as those who serve in the armed forces.
    2. Police officers make mistakes just like anyone else. To pretend as you do, that policemen never make mistakes ignores reality.
    3. To deny the prevalence of racial profiling is again to ignore reality. If the “break in” had been in a wealthy upper class community no one would have been arrested.
    4. The tape recordings-yes, the POLICE tape recordings indicate Sgt. Crowley incorrectly wrote down information.