Thursday, July 23, 2009

My Thoughts On That Gates Guy's Arrest

I think there are 2 universal rules when it comes to dealing with police who are doing their jobs: Number one, accommodate them in their duty and comply with whatever requests they have to the best of your ability, and number two, don't be a dick about it.

A police officer responds to a call that a house is being broken into. He gets to the house he has never been to and finds somebody he has never seen before standing in the front hallway: It's perfectly reasonable to request identification. Give it to him. This Gates guy apparently didn't at first.

Once Gates did show his ID, and the police officer was comfortable that there was no break-in, that should have been the end of it... and probably would have been. Instead, this Gates fellow had to keep talking.

I don't care who you are or what color your skin is: If you insult the police and get argumentative and berate them for doing their job, then you are choosing to tread a line between merely voicing your disagreement and displeasure and verbal assault. I don't know exactly what Gates said, but it was obviously more than the police officer was willing to tolerate.

The discussion here is not about whether police should be able to arrest people who disrepsect them past a certain limit (although I do agree with it), but it is a fact that that is what police do. This Gates guy knew it. He nonetheless harrangued a cop for doing his job, and he got cuffed for it, and it serves him right.


Anonymous said...

I'm a an American.The facts is the Police here are citizen too and they can be arrest while they are in uniform.To loose your cool and arrest someone because you got into an argument is abuse of power.I don't know how it's in your country but police are not God here.

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with you except one issue. If you were in your own bought and paid for home minding your bussiness what cause does anyone have including police to intrude on your property. I would have been pretty disruptive and beligerant also to police. It is different if your out on the street drunk or causing a disturbance. This fellow was in his home no crime took place. Dont they need just cause of a crime taking place to even ask for ID or enter his property. I can see both sides of this and its funny how this spiralled out of control and I think both are at fault. I do believe race is not the issue just common sense on both parties involved. Gates should have stayed cool and the police no matter how pissed should not arrest a decent innocent citizen in his own home for no real crime. Just my 2 cents.

from Jakal

EBCB Blog said...

I think this is all about race issue. This Gate's fellow reacted to the DWB phenomena (driving while black). I agree that this could have been handled differently by the parties involved. But the Harvard professor felt that since he was already in his house, the police should have left the scene ASAP. That should have been the end of it. He was tired after coming home from a trip to China. He said some words and then bam, he was arrested. I do not pretend to know how African Americans feel about being profiled all the time. I am Filipino and have lived in the states since 1977. All I know is that if a policeman says something, I say yes sir with a smile. Thanks.

Jil Wrinkle said...

Here is the arrest report.

It is one thing to put oneself in the shoes of a black person and come to a different conclusion about the motivations of a police officer coming to make sure your house isn't being broken into. It can never justify being rude and belligerent.

Like I said, although it isn't the point of this post, it is a fair argument about whether police should have the right to take somebody into custody who has "crossed a line" in terms of interacting with a public servant. I personally feel that police should have that right.

I saw an interesting comment on another blog: Somebody said that there may be no black-to-white equivalent of "nigger" in the English language, but a black man calling a white man "racist" without proof or justification is pretty close.

C T Dunn said...

I remember, Herbie Gomez of the Gold Star newspaper mentioned that he had abused a local CdO policeman. I think he said the abuse was verbal.

I thought, at that time, he would have been taken to the police station, fined the minimum fine, $131.00, in Lubbock for abuse of a public servant. This is a hard and fast rule in this city.

If he continued - resisting, perhaps, he'd probably spend the night in jail at the very least.

CT Dunn
Lubbock, Texas, USA

Anonymous said...

The biggest 'problem' with this case is that the scumbag media gives every potential race related or shock valued incident a huge public platform to spead discord and dissent.
Keep the people distracted so they cannot unite and see the REAL problems with the country.
Not so much with the current Democrats but the 8 years