Friday, July 24, 2009

I listened intently, but never once did I hear President Obama say he was sorry for charging the Cambridge, MA police department acted "stupidly" when an African-American professor at Harvard was arrested for disorderly conduct by white officer, Sgt. James Crowley. And certainly there was no apology to the officer.
Obama is a man of many words. But there seems to be a void in his volcabulary where the word sorry is concerned. That inability underscores what many detracting pundits claim is arrogance. They may be right. To say you are sorry when you are wrong is an act of humility. And the president was wrong on two counts; accusing an officer of acting stupidly even though Obama admitted he did not know all the facts; then defending the professor as being the victim of racial profiling, without using that term directly or knowing the facts.
Crowley was called a racist and a rogue cop by a man the President calls a friend - Professor, Henry Gates, Jr. That charge has been repudiated by Crowley and the other officers at the scene and by several neighbors who witnessed Professor's Gates loud and insulting behavior. Gates appears to suffer the same deficit in his vocabulary as Obama - the words "I'm sorry" are missing.
Sgt. Crowley has taught classes in racial relations and gave mouth-to-mouth resusitation to Reggie Lewis when the NBA star collasped and died in 1993. This does not speak to a man who is racially insensitive.
This unnecessary controversy will continue to simmer and underscore that two highly successful and accomplished men, who have a darker pimented skin than many of their fellow Americans, seem only able to define themselves by their skin color instead of their accomplishments. How sad for them. How sad for America. How defiling of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, who taught all of us by his quiet, perservering courage to define a man not by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character.
Perhaps both Gates and Obama should take time to read some of the wisdom from a man who gave his life to win equal rights not only for black americans, but for women. Which is why I will always revere and cherish the accomplishments of Dr. King. Yes, he was a black man. More importantly, he was an American man.

No comments:

Post a Comment