Given the title of this post, you’re probably expecting me to expound on “the most pressing question of the day” (scroll down to 6:38 p.m.).
To be honest, I couldn’t care less about what they drank at the White House Beer Fest — except for a momentary revulsion to Biden’s choice of “beer.”
I’m far more interested in the letter we ran in today’s Bee from Fresno State professor Malik Simba. (Read it after the jump.)
photo credit: Associated Press
‘Playing the race card’
Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. knows that he is an ego-centered scholar of race relations who missed the civil rights movement and, therefore, has little “street cred.” Seizing the moment, Gates took charge of the situation and berated the officers until he attained his most fervent wish, i.e. to be a victim.
It’s hard in a post-Obama era for this haute bourgeois of blackness to have substance when he never was “in the struggle.” Playing the race card, Gates hoped that the smart cop, Sgt. James M. Crowley, and his supporting officers, would take the “race bait” and fall into his “cry wolf” racial trap.
The question not posed is, “Did Sgt. Crowley give Gates a wink and a nod and play stupid to get his moment of fame?” Sgt. Crowley, the race relations expert, made a decision to go along with an obvious racial charade.
When you live in Harvard Square and are the only ink spot in the proverbial bowl of white milk, officers know, even before they arrive, who you are. Sgt. Crowley, the race relations expert, more than likely, had viewed Gates’ numerous documentaries on race relations. Gates is Crowley’s intellectual mentor and Crowley fully supported Gates’ attempt to become a victim and attain street credibility.
Africana and American Indian Studies
California State University, Fresno
Now, we all know that Gates is taking advantage of this incident with his decision to make a documentary about race and the criminal justice system.
But did he make that decision after the incident at his home? Or did he seize the moment as it was happening? And did Crowley? Simba’s letter makes you wonder, doesn’t it?