07.26.09

Was Skip Gates Right?

As Gates and his arresting officer prepare for beer at the White House, Daily Beast writers weigh in on the Harvard professor, and whether Barack Obama stepped in it by getting involved.

Obama's Insecure Slip
By Tina Brown

What led the president to wade into L’Affaire Gates? He thought he’d blown it with America on health care.

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Obama Steps In It
By Stanley Crouch

Henry Louis Gates’ arrest had nothing to do with America’s racist past. But why did Barack Obama go off half-cocked about it?

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Give Obama a Break
By Stephen Carter

Yale Professor Stephen L. Carter says that the furor over President Obama’s comments conveniently ignores the history of relations between black men and police in this country.

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The Coverup Is Worse Than the Crime
By Marcia Clark

The former O.J. Simpson prosecutor says that’s sometimes police need to make an arrest just to prove they didn’t do anything wrong.

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Gates' Appalling Entitlement
By Edward Hayes

This controversy shouldn’t be about race. It’s about class, and it’s Henry Louis Gates Jr. who is in the wrong.

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The Wrong Case
By Conor Friedersdorf

If Obama is going to wade into the national dialogue on race and criminal justice, he should forget about Skip Gates.

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Gates' Historical Baggage
By Mansfield Frazier

Professor Gates’ overreaction was not because of his temperament. It is the consequence of centuries of abuse of blacks by those who hold power over them.

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Gates Overreacted
By Wendy Murphy

Wendy Murphy, who is representing the woman who called the cops on Henry Louis Gates, says the professor erred by assuming Sgt. Crowley was discriminating against him.

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What a Cop Is Supposed to Do
By John Connolly

A former New York City detective says that Sgt. James Crowley violated the oldest rule in the book: he lost his cool.

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My Daddy, the Jailbird
By Elizabeth Gates

In Wednesday's press conference, President Obama called the Cambridge Police Department "stupid" for arresting Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. Daughter Elizabeth Gates interviews her dad about what happened to him in jail, how this affects whites too, and why she shouldn’t give up on America yet.

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Obama's New Reverend Wright
By Adam Hanft

He may not be as controversial as Jeremiah Wright, but Skip Gates has become Obama’s latest racially polarizing friend. Adam Hanft rereads Professor Gates’ analysis of the Wright controversy through the lens of the professor’s arrest.

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Xtra Insight: How Gates’ Web Site Covered His Arrest

Xtra Insight: Listen to the 911 Call