July 23, 2009

Is it time for a "national conversation" about class?

"Perhaps, as we view this confrontation between an Harvard Prof who’s a friend of the President and a Cambridge cop, we can also have a national conversation about class."

Yes, a great and unprecedented conversation....


holdfast said...

Well, both Gates and Obama lack class, but I don't think that's what you mean.

L. E. Lee said...

Wow, I have now lost count of how many times Ms. Althouse has played the race card today. I guess keeping her audience of a dozen or so aggrieved "traditional American" readers is important to her fragile ego. Why not fan those flames some more Ann. Real classy...

exhelodrvr1 said...

By "class" you mean "not assuming racism until there is some evidence, and then looking at both sides for racist behavior, not just at the whites", right?

Seven Machos said...

I suggested this in the 92nd comment in the original thread well below, before Instapundit. I said race was a canard and that this was really about how the elite believes it shouldn't have to take this shit from the working class. Something like that.

Anyway, I am flattered, though I feel that, at the end of the day, I am probably just brainwashed from reading Instapundit every single day for about a decade.

Seven Machos said...

P.S.: Clearly, L.E. Lee is not among Althouse's readers.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

You mean this kind of class?

He said ‘I’m here to investigate a 911 call for breaking and entering into this house.’ And I said ‘That’s ridiculous because this happens to be my house. And I’m a Harvard professor.’


The cop needed to know that Gates belonged in his house and was not a burglar. So what did "I'm a Harvard professor" add, except "I'm way cooler than you"?

Seven Machos said...

I always find that when I tell the hoi polloi how much better I am than they are, it goes over real well and I get exactly what I want.

This Gates guy is a regular Dale Carnegie, huh? And so egalitarian. He even let the plebes come to his house.

Methadras said...

L. E. Lee said...

Wow, I have now lost count of how many times Ms. Althouse has played the race card today. I guess keeping her audience of a dozen or so aggrieved "traditional American" readers is important to her fragile ego. Why not fan those flames some more Ann. Real classy...

You know what isn't classy? People like you that project fake outrage over something that really isn't a story to begin with. Nice touch on the traditional aggrieved American victim schtick. As if that dozen (your moronic opinion notwithstanding) are the only ones keeping this blog afloat. Idiot.

jag said...

This incident was more about testosterone and stress levels than about class or race. It's dominating the news cycle only b/c no one really wants to focus on health care.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I would rather not speak about class, thank you.

I don't want to know there are people in this country making less than 100k, it's depressing.

Actually many of the cops in Mass make well over 100k-they are the ones that sit in their cars when a road is being worked on.

I guess I can understand making under 100k if you don't live in a fabulous city but if you are in a fabulous city for the love of God make over 100k.

Thank you.

NKVD said...

LE Lee, like all liberals, is unable to count. Let me help - Ann has played the race card one bazillion times today, slightly fewer times than Obama and Gates did.

Work on your counting, Lee - it will come in handy when you see the change that is left in your pay envelope.

Fred4Pres said...

If we are seriously going to discuss race and justice, lets start with Cory Maye and ignore pompous windbag "Skip" Gates.

Gates should not have been arrested for being an asshole in his own home, but I mean come on, four hours at the police station is annoying but hardly One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. It isn't even David Henry Thoreau spending a day in jail for civil disobediance.

Maguro said...

Fred4Pres - The Maye case doesn't generate any sympathy from the liberal elite because he used a gun to defend himself.

He was supposed to cringe helplessly and wait for some racist cops to rescue him.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I love to do guys from lower class though. Cab drivers, delivery guys, painters, office building cleaners, construction workers, the guys that bus my table.

They are always hotter than "salaried" employees.

Also, I don't want any competition in terms of car, money, loft, education, and I want to own them....for like 10 minutes that it takes for us to do it.

Quayle said...

No, it is time for a national conversation on pride, enmity, and hubris – all character faults that cross human classifications.

As long as we are fixated on endlessly mutable labels like “class” and “race”, we'll keep running in circles as a society.

It is getting tiresome.

I’m for banning all superficial designations and looking to what a person does, and how a person treats others, as a means for praise and condemnation (if there must be any.)

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Fred4Pres said...

If we are seriously going to discuss race and justice, lets start with Cory Maye and ignore pompous windbag "Skip" Gates.


No kidding.

Cory Maye's story has been a source of depression and despair for me for quite some time.

EDH said...

First off, can anyone tell me what the hell a "national conversation" is suppose to mean?

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Didn't we have a "national conversation" after Don Imus thing?

Can we have a moratorium on National Conversations?

TitusABalletForMartha said...

We will be conducting a candle light vigil at the Frank Rich Memorial Park tonight on Brattle and JFK Blvd tonight at 10.

Please bring your candles, we will light them and we will get all vigilly.

Not because of this incident though.

Are we going to expect to see Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson up here within the next couple of days?
Just because.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Hey, I just saw a picture of the cop. He's hot.

Totally on his side.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Obama has already said he was going to exterminate the blue collar workers, all the Walmart shoppers who voted against him. Remember his "it's unpatriotic to not get an education" speech and his plans to send everyone to some sort of college so they become dissatisfied holders of BA degrees?

rhhardin said...

"I find I have to raise a question about Maria, which I should expect only to have to raise about a servant girl."

My favorite class line.

Wm. Empson, _The Structure of Complex Words_, p.21

Ralph L said...

you are in a fabulous city for the love of God make over 100k
You'd better if you want to pay taxes and rent and eat.

Titus, enjoy it while you can. Pretty soon you'll have that rotating sign on your head that says "Over 40."
Just wanted to cheer you up.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I have never been to a WalMart-seriously.

But the cop in this story is making me horny.

Jim said...

Between this incident and Sotomayor's "wise Latina" formulation, if we're going to have a "national conversation" then I assume it's going to start with how many minorities view all whites purely through the prism of their race while whites are the only ones being held to the MLK standard.

Either it applies to everyone or it applies to no one.

People like Gates and Sotomayor are just symptoms of a much larger disease.

I don't think that there's much real interest in an actual "national conversation." There are, however, a whole lot of people who want to throw stones without any care as to the glass house they live in.

If that's not going to be part of the "national conversation," then there's no point in it.

Jason (the commenter) said...

I have never been to a WalMart-seriously.

You should go, it's an exciting experience, especially at the Super Walmarts. The food is so-so, but it's fun to dig around in their stuff (even the clothes) and look for deals.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I'll be honest I don't want to work when I turn 40. When you are 40 plus you should just travel.

I believe I should finish my career at the age of 40.

I don't know what I am going to do about money but I don't want to be in an office in a big corporation when I am 40 and older.

No postings about all the mayors and rabbis in New Jersey? This is red meat for Cedarford.

Seven Machos said...

Wal-Mart is the most depressing place on earth. It's cheap and they have everything, and that's great, but the aesthetic experience is brutal.

JAL said...

Titus --

Are you in Boston or PTown for the summer? Or did you move for real because of the NYC tax situation?

Just asking. (I've missed some conversations.)

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I love Target though. Is there a difference between Walmart and Target?

All the black people that shop at Walmart likely voted for Obama so you can't say all Walmart shoppers.

I am into watching fishing videos on youtube. Specifically Perch, Blue Gills, Walleye, and Muskies. I also an enthralled how they prepare them to eat. Getting the bones out is really like an artist. I love perch.

I am also into all the lakes in Wisconsin. They are beautiful. The thought of selling my expensive loft and buying a home on a small quiet lake is very enticing. But I would have to go somewhere in the winter. The winters are too cold.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I am in Boston, actually Cambridge. I moved from NYC because my company promoted me and the corporate offices are in Cambridge.

I have only gone to Ptown once this summer because the weather has been shit. It is raining here again today. I was supposed to go more but I had a sick dog. I am going to be in Ptown much of August for my weekends. I also can't take time off from work because we are going through a huge expansion-hiring 300 people.

AJ Lynch said...

Yikes Instapundit has been doing that for ten years!

He is a perfect example of how MSM ignores some icons. He is a modern day Paul Revere in some ways.

He should have been on Sixty Minutes by now. God, they have their heads up their asses.

Seven Machos said...


Greenwich Village:Chelsea

Seven Machos said...

Is 60 Minutes still around? Does anyone pay attention?

Freeman Hunt said...

I live near the home of Wal-Mart. We have the best Wal-Mart stores on Earth. They are wonderful, far above the average.

Freeman Hunt said...

Is there a difference between Walmart and Target?

Not between Target and the Walmart test store where I shop. Actually the Walmart is probably a little nicer. But that's the test store, and it's always got Walmart executives roaming around in it, so maybe not the same as others.

Elliott A said...

Class is when you have a first name that isn't Professor or Doctor. Class is kindly assisting the police officer so they can get on their way to do their real job. Class is being polite, like Titus. Class is Luigi's barber shop in my hometown of Metuchen, NJ, where everyone waited, first come, first served, even the Mayor; except on the day you got married, you were next when you walked in the door.

Ralph L said...

the aesthetic experience is brutal
Our "new" Walmart at the Mexican end of town has dirt brown-tinted concrete floors. Racists!

They're actually the only place in town that has edible celery. Plus, so many of the shoppers are odd-looking, I don't get stared at.

Big Mike said...

I guess keeping her audience of a dozen or so aggrieved "traditional American" readers is important to her fragile ego.

I think it's safe to assume that L.E.Lee never went to college. Otherwise he'd know that there is no such thing as a university professor with a fragile ego.

But I don't think there is going to be a "national conversation" on race, class, or anything else, because liberals like L.E.Lee aren't prepared to have their minds opened to new ideas. But whether L.E. or any other liberal likes it or not, there is a consensus forming.

Elliott A said...

I estimate that my local Wal Mart has saved me about 25K on groceries since it opened 10 years ago

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I like Targets home goods stuff.

Their clothes aren't bad either. yes, you heard me right.

I like Target's clothes.

I can walk to a Target which is nice. There doesn't seem to be as many Walmarts around here. I think the closest one is in Lynn, Mass which is a pit.

Lynn, Lynn, the city of sin, once you go in you'll never something-I forgot the rest.

I miss Farm N Fleet's. I love Farm N Fleets. Carhart clothes for days. Whenever I go home my dad and I go to Farm N Fleet. There is an amazing one in Baraboo, which is a city I absolutely love.

madawaskan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
TitusABalletForMartha said...

I do like getting fruits and vegies at Whole Foods though.

They are so purdy there.

Also, they have Dr. Hauschka skin care supplies which I absolutely love.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Thanks for the clarification Seven Machos-you know I can understand now.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

"Class is when you have a first name that isn't Professor or Doctor."


But: "there is no such thing as a university professor with a fragile ego." I tend to think that people who are all DON'T YOU KNOW WHO I AM have very fragile egos. If a person is comfortable with who he is, that person doesn't have to demand that other people kiss his feet all the time.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Does everyone city now have a "mexican end" in their city?

I think so.

Those mexicans do multiply faster than rabbits. Every time I see a family I see another new chimichanga in the baby carriage.

madawaskan said...

Ya it's interesting that you bring up that New Jersey Corruption Case.

I was noticing how the key arrests-the two mayors and the deputy mayor-how in the news reports they don't mention the party affiliation's of the bigger fish.

Almost all democrats.

National Review notices that it is even worse than that-

Here is the report they cite-notice the one and only party affiliation?

New Jersey Corruption Sting Nabs . . . 30, and Counting (UPDATED)

A New Jersey assemblyman and the mayors of Hoboken and Secaucus were among public officials arrested this morning by FBI agents in an international money laundering and corruption probe that includes rabbis in the Syrian Jewish communities of Deal and Brooklyn.

Assemblyman Daniel Van Pelt (R-Ocean), Hoboken Mayor Peter Cammarano, Secaucus Mayor Dennis Elwell and Jersey City Council President Mariano Vega are among those already brought to the FBI building in Newark. Jersey City Deputy Mayor Leona Beldini has also been arrested.

The report helpfully lets us know that Van Pelt is a Republican.

Cammarano is a Democrat. "In 2004, Peter served as Hoboken’s coordinator for the Kerry-Edwards presidential campaign. In 2006, Peter was the statewide legal coordinator for Bob Menendez’s Senate campaign."

Dennis Elwell is a Democrat.

Jersey City deputy mayor Leona Beldini is a Democrat.

Jersey City council president Mariano Vega is a Democrat.


UPDATE: The morning continues:

Ridgefield Mayor Anthony Suarez [a Democrat] was among the officials charged in today’s corruption bust. Suarez was charged with extortion for accepting payments from a cooperating witness in exchange for help with a real estate deal.

Federal prosecutors have filed a criminal complaint against Assemblyman L. Harvey Smith (Democrat-Jersey City), alleging extortion charges.

State Sen. Sandra B. Cunningham<(Democrat-Jersey City) confirmed that long time Jersey City Democratic strategist Joe Cardwell, a key advisor to public officials there over the last 20 years, was among those arrested in today’s wide reaching corruption bust.

AJ Lynch said...

Sixty Minutes still around? LOL.

That was Cold Seven- if Andy or Morley or Mike Wallace could stay up this late, they'd be mad at that crack.

Yeah I have not watched for about 20 years but would watch if Insty was featured.

AJ Lynch said...

Insty needs a good agent IMO.

madawaskan said...

So the one Republican they let you know about the rest...

they let you guess.


TitusABalletForMartha said...

Mexicans clean the hallway in my building. Another group of Mexicans do the landscaping.

Would it be rude of me to ask them to produce their green card?

I might want to run for elected office and I don't want to get slammed for employing Mexicans.

Would someone here send my writings here to the local press and as a result diminish my chances to make an impact on the people in my community? I hope not. that would hurt.

Look what it did to poor Mitt Romney. Tagg was devastated.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

There were a lot of jews with beanies getting off those buses in handcuffs. How embarrassing.

Haven't my peeps suffered enough?

DADvocate said...

Doesn't seem to bother L.E. Lee and other libs when the President and a pampered Harvard prof play the race card, does it.

Definitely a class thing going on here too. Dems seem to think you must be an Ivy Leaguer to be president. And Ivy League profs seem to think they're above the law nor need to show simple respect for a policeman trying to protect their home.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Not true Dad.

Bush was an Ivy Leaguer and no liberals thought he should of been president.

madawaskan said...


You wouldn't be caught dead in a-

is that what you call them-


That's so Boston....

Bruce Hayden said...

This actually gets back to Sarah Palin a bit...

I think that what we saw this last election very vividly was the assumption that Obama (and maybe Biden) were of a higher social class than was Sarah Palin, and thus innately better qualified to run this country. How else to explain so many thinking that someone with so little relevant training or experience was qualified to run this country?

The class at issue is mostly educational or credentials based. A law degree is better than a bachelors degree, and Harvard and Yale law degrees the best of all. Gates, having a PhD, and teaching at Harvard, was obviously much higher class than the cop who arrested him, and the later should have just stood by in awe of him as a result.

This sort of classism though doesn't sit well with a lot of Americans, esp. those in the lower middle class, like a lot of the Palin supporters or the cop arresting Gates.

The Democrats are in a dicey situation here. One of their biggest traditional demographics are just these same blue collar, Reagan Democrats. And yet, so many of the Democrats in power these day look down on this demographic.

Why do the Democrats have this problem more than the Republicans? My suggestion is that it is because a theory of increasing government intervention and/or socialism requires a belief that man is smart enough to organize and plan society. And, the smartest would invariably be the best at this, since they are, by definition, the smartest. And, of course, the smartest also are the ones with law degrees from or teach at Harvard (or at least that is their belief).

Let me also suggest that this classism is one of the driving forces behind affirmative action at the college level. A Harvard degree is a credential that implies that the holder is the best of the best, and thus should be eligible for admission to the highest reaches of a meritocracy. Of course, AA admits to such schools are by definition not the best of the best (otherwise, they would be admitted w/o AA preference). But appearances are what count here.

Bruce Hayden said...

Bush was an Ivy Leaguer and no liberals thought he should of been president.

But he was a legacy (at least at Yale), and so that didn't count. Of course, the same people who believed that he wasn't qualified, despite his Ivy League degrees, because he was a legacy admit, never really could answer why his two Presidential opponents were any more qualified. They too had Ivy League undergraduate degrees, and had been admitted just as preferentially.

Big Mike said...

@Laura, I hadn't thought about it that way. I think you're right.

@Bruce, that's extremely insightful.

madawaskan said...


the weird thing is-do they really believe in Obama's competence?

He has so many czars for the assist that you'd think he was Sarah Palin to them.

Chip Ahoy said...

Class. National conversation. Class. National Conversation. Sorry, doesn't compute. Is that where someone does all the talking and I do all the pretending to listen? What good would a conversation do anyway when percepts and values are ossified? Do we even speak the same languages? Do those words being used even mean the same thing to me?

Speaking of class, I just translated a phrase on the stela of Hakaib in the self-presentation section that read:

glyphs of: [Sedge frond, quail chick, folded bolt of cloth, lasso, eagle, path with bushes, walking legs, zig-zag water line, milk jar on a rope, bread bun, two sedge fronds, basket without handle, owl, crossroads, bread bun, one , bread bun, zig-zag water line, owl, seated dignitary, two folded bolts of cloth, tied papyrus roll, basket without handle]

When you transliterate that and translate it into English it means:

"I surpassed any peer of mine in this town in all kinds of (dignity/wealth)"

That was the end of a long passage of braggadocio and I thought when I read that, "Well, you don't have to brag about it and have it chiseled in stone, you ass hole. No class."

Instead of a national conversation on class, I'd rather show you the first tomato from my balcony garden this season. It only took about 100 gallons of water and 8 feedings of Rapid Grow™ to produce. It's some kind of heirloom.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

The democrat politicians at the local level are very blue collar. Mike Capuano, who represents Somerville and Cambridge is about as blue collar as you get, from the harsh Boston accent to his rough demeanor. He may of went to Harvard but he is old school Boston through and through.

The mayors of Cambridge and Somerville are very blue collar, although one is a black dyke, the other is a hot italian. Both democrats, natch.

Tip O'Neill, who represented this district forever is very blue collar, even though he was educated.

Other house of reps from Mass like Stephen Lynch, John Tierney, and the rest are very blue collar.

Barney Frank isn't blue collar, although he didn't come from much money. He is highly educated, all from Harvard. I think he has a phd from Harvard.

Deval Patrick is not blue collar but Harvard educated, although he came from a crap childhood in Chicago.

This is the problem with other democrats of course.

This is a big problem for Mitt Romney as well. He is about as Boston Brahm as you get, other than he is a Mormon.

The reason blue collar voters here vote for Kerry and Kennedy, who are incredibly elite, is because they are big union backers. The unions here are very powerful.

I hate unions. I am very corporate. The unions here are constantly targeting the biotech companies and I despise that.

LoafingOaf said...

Officer Crowley made a malicious, ridiculous arrest. These sorts of B.S. arrests happen all the time in poor neighborhoods. I already know that no one really cares about the abuses police are committing in poor areas. These rights people go on about don't apply in some parts of the country.

I love how so many of the right wingers on Althouse who sometimes like to fashion themselves as libertarians are exposing themselves. You really think Gates should have been handcuffed and arrested? You can't put aside your desire to score political points on Obama and a left wing HArvard profressor and notice that this cop abused his power? Does abuse of power by the police not bother you? Regardless of what you think about Gates' belligerence?

You're no libertarians.

The cop should have walked away and gone on to more important things, such as stopping actual crimes.

He arrested this man because he didn't like him and the things he was saying. IN HIS OWN HOME. AFTER IT HAD BEEN DETERMINED NO CRIME WAS BEING COMMITTED THERE. The cop was not just unprofessional, he is a ROGUE COP on a power trip. I don't want rogue cops coming up in my home, either.

MadisonMan said...

A couple comments.

So what did "I'm a Harvard professor" add

It could have been classist bloviating, but if the Police Officer knew the house was owned by Harvard, it could be a kind of explanation. I'm inclined to believe the former.

when I tell the hoi polloi

the in that phrase is a pleonasm. (end ironic pedantry)

Total agreement with Titus re: Farm and Fleet. If only the F/F store on Hwy 51 in Madison were closer. That store has anything and everything you need. The only WalMart I've been to in Madison is the one near West Towne, and that store is a filthy overcrowded pit.

And I also question what a 'national conversation' is. Do I have to talk to people from Illinois or Minnesota or (shudder) Iowa if it happens? I'd rather not. I can talk to people from Tennessee or Maryland, though.

Re: The New Jersey scandal, my thought is the (R) was identified because everyone would assume the crook was a Democrat, because the default NJ politician is a crook and a Democrat.

Jim said...

LoafingOaf -

Do you admit that Gates is a racist and had no call to berate and harass Crowley in the first place?

TitusABalletForMartha said...

I think Massachusetts has 9 house of representatives and all of them are democrats.

Massachusetts is the most liberal state in the country by far.

Fags are getting married here for chrissakes.

The 4 republican governors we had were all big social liberals: Weld, Celluci, Swift, and Romney--not anymore of course. That is the reason I think Romney can never win the republican nomination. All his republican opponents need to show previous videos of him saying he would be better for gays than Teddy Kennedy and that he doesn't want to go back to the days of Ronald Reagan and he will be toast. Also, Sarah Palin would crush him.

Synova said...

Hey... maybe "University Professor" is a "class."

Weren't we just talking about a woman in Bozeman, MT who figured it was all Sarah Palin's fault that she got arrested for leaving toddlers in the care of 12 year olds at the mall?

Maybe this "I'm too important to be treated like a commoner" thing is a University professor thing?

Synova said...

Heh... guess Seven Machos said that four comments down.


cubanbob said...

The only thing that this administration has proven that it is the meeting point of the Peter Principle and Afirmative Action. That fact that he mouths off about the incident with Gates without knowing any of the facts or the sequence of events once again proves he is the intersection of AA and the Peter Principle.

If Obama were to actually release his birth certificate and his grade transcripts then we may know if in fact he really is not only legally the president but actually possesing something of an education, something that he yet actually been able to demonstrate in his actions over the last six months. I suspect just like Kerry's discharge records we will hear a lot about them but never actually see them. The only skill Obama has demonstrated is his ability to read a Teleprompter in a natural speaking style. No wonder Hollywood loves him, he is one of them. All form and no substance.

TitusABalletForMartha said...

Who amongst us here doesn't think the cop is very hot?

He is yummy.

LoafingOaf said...

Jim: My understanding (I don't know much about him) is that Gates has a good reputation and is not one of the cooks you sometimes hear about in black studies areas of universities.

I have some amount of sympathy for the officer, in so far as he thought he was investigating a burglary, he didn't know what was going on at the house, and wanted Gates to respect him and be helpful. But you have to also consider how Gates was perceiving things. He was at his own home and maybe he overreacting by thinking he had just been racially profiled but such misunderstandings can easily happen. So why did the police officer not say something like, "I'm sorry you're taking that view, but if you have further questions about why I was called here, call down to the station and it will all be explained to you.. I see there is no burglary going on here, we're sorry for having disturbed you, and I hope you have a nice day."

Why did the police officer allow himself to get so angered by Gates' comments? He should have just left. There was no crime going on there. The guy was in his own home. He may have thought Gates was wrong and being a dick, and he may have been right about that, but that's something he could tell his buddies at the bar after work. WHY ARREST THE MAN? It was malicious arrest. You should not be arrested in your own home just because you say something to a cop that he finds annoying.

I think there was some basis for Gates to wonder if he was being racially profiled, even if he was in error in thinking that. So the cop should have stayed calmer and not escalated it. And the basis for arrest was total B.S. and an abuse of power. Usually cops get away with such abuses of power, which makes them more likely to continue to abuse their powers.

LoafingOaf said...

cooks=kooks, sorry I have so many typos

Synova said...

It's okay, Oaf.

Soon enough anyone with any self respect will give up the idea of being a cop and only the power hungry bullies will remain.

I mean... the thanks for responding promptly to a possible break in is getting yelled at and called a racist the moment you show up.

Who needs that?

(Also, again... the public servant thing... do you treat all of your servants like shit?)

richard said...


Oligonicella said...

True class is my ex's father. A man with several Phd's, who traveled the Holy Lands and actually held and read the books because he knew five or six languages involved. He also lived in rural Mo and traveled to preach at small churches. He disdained the titles "Doctor" and "Professor" because his congregations were working people and he thought it pompous to put himself above them.

Lem said...

Narrator: How could she ever hate them for what was at bottom merely their weakness? She would probably have done things like those to be fallen her if she had lived in one of these houses. To measure them by her own yardstick as her father put it. Would she not, in all honesty, have done the same as Chuck and Vera and Ben and Mrs Henson and Tom and all these people in their houses? Grace paused. - - - And all of a sudden she knew the answer to her question all too well. If she had acted like them she could not have defended a single one of her actions and could not have condemned them harshly enough. It was as if her sorrow and pain finally assumed their rightful place. No. What they had done was not good enough. And if one had the power to put it to right it was one's duty to do so - for the sake of other towns, for the sake of humanity. And not least for the sake of the human being that was grace herself.

Too bad the "conversation" will not end as in
Dogville 2003 ;)

Oligonicella said...

Synova --

Agree with you. There's a saying - "A man with manners that treats a waiter poorly is no gentleman."

LoafingOaf said...

Synova: Once the officer realized that Gates lived there and no burglary was being committed, he should have left. He would've then been the bigger man. But he wasn't the bigger man. He responded to Gates' remarks by making a B.S. arrest. In the end, the officer was the worser man between the two. He abused his powers as a police officer.

And abuses of power by plice happens all the time in poor neighborhoods. Most of the nation looks the other way. There's a reason a lot of people don't respect the police the way people in the nicest suburbs do.

LoafingOaf said...

Oh, and BTW, for much of the incident, it was Officer Crowley and Prof. Gates alone. Some people have no idea what dicks police can be. And how unrprofessional they can be. When no one else is watching and it will be one person's word against the officer's word.

Seven Machos said...

Oaf -- Why the blame game? In the thread below, William summed it up perfectly: this is a case of assholes colliding.

The cop shouldn't have been an asshole and arrested Gates. Gates shouldn't have been such an asshole that he would anger a cop so much.

Jim said...

LoafingOaf -

1) Gates had no reasonable belief that he was being racially profiled. He knew for a fact that he had, by his own admission, just forced entry into his house in full view of the neighborhood. Racial profiling is defined as using race as a determining factor to insinuate that someone is committing a crime solely on the basis of the color of their skin. Gates admitted that he had apparently just committed a crime, so there was no possibility that a policeman just randomly picked him out of a crowd because he was black. He was at the scene of the "crime," and did in fact do what he was suspected of doing.

2) Gates was not in his home when he was arrested. He was outside his home. If the officer had slapped the cuffs on him prior to that point I might have agreed with you. But he didn't. Gates called him a racist and still the officer was willing to leave the scene.

3) Gates pursued the officer. That's an act of aggression in order to continue his tirade.

4) If Gates had confined his abuse to a conversation with the officer, then again, you might have a point. But he was shouting to the people assembled there about "This is how a black man gets treated" - attempting to incite them against the officer. That is the very definition of disorderly conduct. That Gates thought he could get away with it is the problem, not that the officer enforced the law.

5) Gates' reputation is not one of class and distinction. I read elsewhere an anecdote of someone who greeted him at a party and noted that they had similar last names. Gates' response? "Then your grandfather probably owned my grandfather."

a) Gates' grandfather couldn't have been owned by anyone else's grandfather. Slaves were freed almost 150 years ago. Even if Gates' father and grandfather had both been 40 years old before becoming a father for the first time, it still wouldn't have been possible for Gates' grandfather to have been owned by anybody.
b) He automatically assumed that this person's grandparents were slaveowners. That's a racist, and likely wrong, assumption to make. More likely that the person's family emigrated to the US sometime after the Civil War, were citizens of a Union state, or was a non-slave-owning Southerner. The number of actual slaveowners was actually quite small as a percentage of the population.
c) What kind of race-baiting jackass even makes that sort of comment to someone he has just met? That's beyond rude: it's patently offensive, and there's no way that he couldn't have known that.

Spare me the protestations about Gates' "reputation." From what I've seen, he's just a better-educated Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton-style race hustler.

Jim said...

LoafingOaf -

"Oh, and BTW, for much of the incident, it was Officer Crowley and Prof. Gates alone."

Even Gates has never said that Crowley ever did or said anything of a racist nature. His own account of the story clears Crowley of any insinuation that he did something out of the view of everyone else that could or would have justified Gates' racist rantings.

Gates admits that he went off on the officer immediately upon being asked to provide identification. No provocation. No reason to go off except that he didn't like the color of the officer's skin.

EDH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LoafingOaf said...

Seven, I agree that it was assholes colliding. I said as much in the previous thread on this.

But the thing is, I know from my own life experience that police are a bit out of control in America. And I don't like it. A lot of my view is influenced by how corrupt and crooked I know FOR A FACT the police of Cleveland, Ohio, to be. I don't actually live in Cleveland. I live in Beachwood, Ohio, where I have only good things to say about the police. But I really think the nation just doesn't wanna know how out of control our police are in some areas. There are some areas in America where Constitutional rights simply do not exist. You'd think at leas the people who fashion themselves as libertarians would be concerned about that.

I see no legit basis for Gates to have been arrested. I see plenty of basis for the cop to have gone to the bar with his buddies later and told them what a dick Gates was. But we're talking about handcuffing and arresting the man. And I see nothing in the record which justified that. However much the rogue cop goes on about how the "acoustics" of the house made Gates' loud voice rise to the level of "disorderly conduct". I'm astonished that people are not univeraslly laughing at that garbage. The cop arrested him because he was annoyed and didn't like Gates.

The charges were quickly dismissed because they were BULLSHIT.

John said...

Seven Machos:

It was not Gate's house. It was rented. Apparently nobody in the neighborhood knows him

Also, note the last line in the police report:

"After a brief consultation with Sgt Lashley and UPON GATES' REQUEST [emph added-JRH] he was transported to 125 6th St..." [Apparently the police station-JRH]

Now why woould Gates request to be taken in? It couldn't be that he wanted publicity, could it? After all, he has no past history as a publicity hound on the order of a Jackson or Sharpton does he?

John Henry

Seven Machos said...

Oaf -- You don't understand constitutional rights. Here's a good way to think about it: they only take place in front of judges.

Jim said...

LoafingOaf -

"But the thing is, I know from my own life experience that police are a bit out of control in America. And I don't like it."

I agree with you in many respects. I know the police, for example, in Baltimore are well known for their propensity for beating up suspects and harassing people as well as being corrupt. (Not to tar all BPD officers with the same brush, but it's hardly a secret what goes on in their ranks.)

My point is, that this is the wrong case to make your stand on. What you have hear is a guy who was trying to make a scene by screaming at the top of his lungs. This was no innocent bystander being wrongly harassed by "the man." He went out of his way to provoke an incident - likely so that he could play the victim and get a whole bunch of publicity. Those are the tactics of a Jesse Jackson or an Al Sharpton: not a "respected member of the academic community."

PatCA said...

I think Obama with his "stupidly" comment has made made racism tediously boring.

Seven Machos said...

I don't think Gates wanted publicity. I think he genuinely believes the cop was being uppity from a class perspective, though he does not realize this.

Also, and this will be offensive to some ears, I think he's like those fat dykes who hold the anti-rape candlelight vigils across liberal arts college campuses each year in many respects. The likelihood that you will ever get raped is low, lady. But, oh, to be a martyr for the great cause...

Jim said...

LoafingOaf -

"The charges were quickly dismissed because they were BULLSHIT."

No. The charges were dismissed because most disorderly conduct charges are dismissed anyway. They are minor offenses that prosecutors hate wasting time pursuing because the judge is just going to slap the guy on the wrist no matter what.

As John points out, Gates requested to be taken in. Odds are that he probably would have been uncuffed and released immediately if he had shown any modicum of self-restraint whatsoever. If you ever watched even a single episode of COPS, you see police officers do that sort of thing all the time. But, if the guy insists on being taken "downtown" and booked, then the officer is going to oblige him.

Jim said...

Seven -

"I don't think Gates wanted publicity. "

I have to part ways with you on this one. You don't start screaming at the people standing around that "This is the way a black man gets treated" unless you're trying to draw attention to yourself.

I think as an African-American studies professor he was trying to give himself some "street cred" by creating an incident where he could go to his classes and proclaim proudly that even he gets "hassled by the man" too. Doesn't that just prove how necessary he, Prof. Gates, Ph.D., is in today's society? And isn't it just proof how vitally important African-American studies are in general?

EDH said...

Speaking of race and class, my most vivid memory of the Cambridge Police Dept took place within the angled walls of the Harvard Lampoon.

The Lampoon hosted the VIP party following the opening of the very first House of Blues, located in Cambridge.

As the VIPs drained, the Lampoon clique got drunker and drunker and wilder and wilder. The police were called on several noise complaints.

Around 4am, the police returned with an ultimatum delivered by a no-nonsense black senior patrol officer, accompanied by several baton carrying colleagues and a prisoner transport.

He led them up the stairs and entered the dining room, whereupon he saw most of the Lampoon staff dancing drunk on top dining table, screaming with loud music playing, the floor strewn with food and booze that had been thrown about.

There I saw an imminent clash of race and class, between the steely-eyed black officer working the overnight shift, and the spoiled brat, all white members of the Lampoon house.

Fearlessly, I stepped into the breach. I asked the officer to give me two minutes to break up the party and, if unsuccessful, it would be his to break up.

Surprisingly, he agreed.

I shut off the music, grabbed who appeared to be the Lampoon top dog, and abruptly pulled him down off the table. I shook him, maybe even slapped him, and told him the party was over.

Groggily, he agreed and enlisted the cooperation of his fellow Lampoon housemates.

It was sufficient compliance for the Cambridge police, led by that black officer, to withdraw from the building.

Despite his initial demeanor, when shown compliance, that black officer displayed restraint and did not allow personal class issues to escalate the situation.

On a more basic level, I’ve always thought he was just glad someone else was there to step-in to deal with these crazy white boys.

One of the few times in my life when I felt like a true peacemaker.

Seven Machos said...

Maybe we are talking about the same thing. I think publicity is the byproduct of the need to be a martyr, and to see proven all your beliefs.

For the dykes, it's about men. For this guy, it's about whites. For Cedarford, it's the goddamn Jews. But the basic stimulus against some other is the same.

Jim said...

Seven -

Sounds like we're on the same page.

Cedarford said...

Titus - "This is a big problem for Mitt Romney as well. He is about as Boston Brahm as you get, other than he is a Mormon.."

Romney's Dad was a refugee from the Mexican Revolution, who had no money to go to college. But very smart. His kids were the ones that went to college. Mitt Romney is brilliant, but has some of the clumsiness his Dad had in politics...which many found endearing in George Romney.

Mitt Romney certainly dressed like a Boston Brahmin, but he was never one.

I think class is more important than race in this country. But it is a matter the race and gender obsessed media tends to ignore more than other dividers. The Left likes to talk "Legacies" a lot and how prominent whites "unfairly got into top schools" - but ignore the "legacies" on the Left like Noble Algore, Kerry, Teddy, or Jews that used their "Networks" to gain entry to great schools and exec track starting jobs at Jewish-owned businesses.

Remember Kerry "Work hard and study hard because if you mess up, you might get stuck in Iraq!"

The corruption case in New Jersey looks pretty spectacular. Leaders in 4 major cities, State Assemblymen. Major Jewish real estate developers doing the bribes. Bribe money run through "pre-existing" money laundering schemes set up by 4 Syrian Jew and Hasidic rabbis tied into Israeli and Swiss financial channels. Another Jew apparantly running a black market in organs for transplants using the same Rabbi-run religious 501-Cs to launder his money. Tens of millions a year from bribed politicians, Jewish businesses going through the money laundering.

44 indictments. And they all appear to be the "top people" - and the indictments don't mention the "lower ranks"..probably hundreds more.

Informant was the son of a rabbi indicted in 2006 for a 400 million real estate fraud, who the FBI turned on others.

Ralph L said...

Does everyone's city now have a "mexican end" in their city?
Only the prosperous ones.

Do I have to talk to people from Illinois or Minnesota or (shudder) Iowa if it happens?
We'll try to screen out the rubes for you.

Bruce Hayden said...

I think class is more important than race in this country. But it is a matter the race and gender obsessed media tends to ignore more than other dividers. The Left likes to talk "Legacies" a lot and how prominent whites "unfairly got into top schools" - but ignore the "legacies" on the Left like Noble Algore, Kerry, Teddy, or Jews that used their "Networks" to gain entry to great schools and exec track starting jobs at Jewish-owned businesses.

I think that you are right now, but not in the past. Because of their Ivy League credentials, the Obamas are of the right class, while the Palins, are not.

Penny said...

There won't be any national conversation on "class" during this administration. It is clear that the "rich class" (defined as earning $250,000 and up), are being made to look like the new enemy. And that kind of discrimination is just fine these days.

Penny said...

The sad thing about this is how easy it's been for Obama to alienate massive groups of people against fellow citizens who have been successful.

When I was young, it was possible to believe you could be "rich" some day if you worked hard enough and studied hard enough. How many dreamers are out there now?

The "American Dream" is dying. It might be nice to have a national conversation on that.

Jim said...

Penny -

"The "American Dream" is dying. It might be nice to have a national conversation on that."

Take heart. Just a quick look at Obama's freefalling poll numbers on everything from his personal approval to his policies is all it takes to realize that, although Obama and the Democratic Party might be waging class warfare, the American public isn't eager to enlist.

The closer they get to the sounds of gunfire, the faster they run in the opposite direction.

Penny said...

"One of the few times in my life when I felt like a true peacemaker."

Great story, EDH. And on so many levels really.

I like that you got directly involved, and because you did, things came to a better conclusion than they might have without you.

Some people are born mediators, or peacemakers, if you prefer.

Alex said...

I can see the usual suspects(LE Lee) are accusing Althouse of playing the race card, when it's about the CLASS CARD YOU FUCKING IDIOT MORONS!!!

Alex said...

No one would ever accuse me of being a peacemaker. That's for sure.

Penny said...

Jim, I have a question for you. Have you gotten into any conversations lately with people who are not your best friends, or people who you don't know so well about any of this?

I am seriously concerned about this fast track we seem to be on in our country right now, but particularly about our debt, the health care and cap and trade legislation for now. I try to talk to people about it and my feelings when I get a chance. I have yet to find ONE SINGLE PERSON who shares my concerns.

I am really interested in what others are experiencing "out there".

Lem said...

If Obamacare dies in the operating table (its moribund right now) are we going to be accused of stupidity or worst racism?

Alex said...

Lem - we'll be accused of crimes against humanity and clubbing baby seals. Maybe even genocide? Who knews with this crew of Alinskyites. I've learned not to underestimate how underhanded and vicious they can get...

Penny said...

"If Obamacare dies in the operating table.."

But that is exactly my point about asking what others are experiencing when they try to conduct offline dialogue about these issues.

There is some real danger for citizens when they only talk to like minded people on line. Worse yet, when we believe only those polls we want to believe.

From my discussions, I am sad to report that the "patient" seems likely to survive.

Alex said...

Penny - I would like to ask my co-workers what they think about ObamaCare, but it's not worth causing strife at my workplace. So I'm taking the safe route and discussing to strangers on the internet.

Ofc. Krupke said...

He was at his own home and maybe he overreacting by thinking he had just been racially profiled but such misunderstandings can easily happen.

At some point, shouldn't that legendary intellect of his have put two and two together and connected his attempts to force the door with the presence of this cop on his porch talking about a break-in?

However much the rogue cop goes on about how the "acoustics" of the house made Gates' loud voice rise to the level of "disorderly conduct". I'm astonished that people are not univeraslly laughing at that garbage.

No. You should read the report again. The reference to "acoustics" and Gates' yelling was the officer's explanation for why he left the house, because he couldn't hear his radio. It needs to be remembered that Gates was arrested OUTSIDE the house, so "acoustics" don't enter into it.

traditionalguy said...

The unique American dream is a product of the land available to all settlers here that willingly risked going into a hostile wilderness and conquering it. That group won. The European aristocratic families allowed this in hopes of getting Fabulously wealthy from land sales to the hard working settlers here. The Geo Washington's wanted a part of the same aritocratic priviledges and wealth, and were stunned when Parlement tried an Obamalike taxation plan to siphon off the wealth. In one sense, English Aristocrats and their King's government descended here to rob the place after the French and Indian War ended. The result was the alliance between the settlers and the Tidewater+Bostonian local aristocrats to fight a deadly 6 year war for Independence. The frontline troops were the settlers lead by the local Aristocrats who treated them as equals because the Scott-Irish demanded that. The terms of that alliance have changed back and forth for 200 years, but it is the basis of the moneyed and educated Class's relations with hard working and hard fighting uneducated Americans all living together. The New Thing is a sudden realization among the Educated Class that all they need today is Chinese and Mexican workers and world trade. We are quickly reverting to the European relationships between educated Aristocracy centers and (Obama calls them stoopid) Red State workers with no important jobs to do. The question left for Progressives like Obama is how to replace American troops (USMC etc.) with a UN or other international organized force. Now you know why a Sarah Palin has always been enemy #1 to Progressive Aristocrats.

Jim said...

Penny -

"Have you gotten into any conversations lately with people who are not your best friends, or people who you don't know so well about any of this?"

Yes and no. Do my wife's classmates count? My wife is a doctoral student, and her classmates are pretty much all 20-somethings who were - to a person - Obama voters last fall. My wife and I were the lone (and I do mean lone) conservatives last fall.

I've continued talking to them throughout this time period about the issues, and what has come out of those discussions is that their votes for Obama were mostly based in ignorance of the issues, the history surrounding those issues, and the natural consequences of implementing Obama's policies.

Over time, I've seen their attitudes about Obama changed radically to the point that one of those friends actually texted my wife the other morning when he was on the Today Show and Meredith Viera wasn't letting him off the hook about some question or another to tell her to 'Turn on the Today Show.'

[My wife and I kiddingly call it our personal 'Adopt-A-Liberal' program.]

In addition, we attended a local Tea Party at my wife's insistence. Neither of us have ever before been active in that way, and neither have the people we met there been either. People are angry out there at the direction being taken, and I know the Leftists want to take them lightly but - unlike the Daily Kos crowd - these people have jobs and they vote. They're not MoveOn's paper tigers. They're business owners who have the resources to back candidates: they're not college kids living off mom and dad or aging hipsters who've been protesting everything under the sun since the 60s.

Before this year, I think most people had become complacent. The only ones who were fired up before this year were the Leftists. That dynamic has completely changed now: the MoveOn folks are finding themselves outnumbers 2, 5 or even 10-to-1 when they try to organize protests.

There's a reason that Congress hasn't held votes on ObamaCare: their phones are still ringing off the hooks about their votes on cap-and-tax, people are openly laughing at them at their townhall meetings, and protesters are showing up at their local offices.

Be of good cheer, and Adopt-A-Liberal. Remember: you too can make a difference.

Ralph L said...

I read somewhere that well before the Revolution, America had a higher per-capita income than any country in Europe (presumably slaves weren't included).

R E Lee's father went bust from land speculation. It was an easy way to get richer (or poorer) faster. He (twice) and Washington both married money, too.

DADvocate said...

Sorry, Titus, the Dems only offered a different Ivy Leaguer in each election. All Ivy all the time.

DADvocate said...

The last five Democrat candidates for presidetns: Dukakis, Bill Clinton, Gore, Kerry and Obama. All Ivy Leaguers. Talk about a party of snobs and an oligarchy.

AJ Lynch said...

Trad guyL

Obama wants to outsource the military?

While I disagree with that idea vehemently, it may be the first original idea Obama has had in his predictable-ideology led life.

Roger and Denise said...

To answer the professors question at the beginning--No I do not want to have a national conversation about class--what a loser.

As for the Gates-Cambridge PD dust up. While we continue to blather about it, it should be noted that both Gates and the Cambridge folks apparently came to their senses within 24 hours, and got it resolved. yet the yammering classes are still yammering.

We would do well to follow the example set out by cambridge and gates and STFU.

William said...

EDH: I read your 11:35pm post with some interest. I think you should have explained to the black cop that you and your friends were Harvard students and were, therefore, a better judge of civilized sound levels than he. You could have clinched the argument by pointing out that the black cop was, doubtlessly, an affirmative action hire and was too dumb to understand the constitutional issues of free speech involved in the free assembly of your party. The black cop would have been persuaded by the reason of your discourse, and your party could have flowed to its natural, organic demise.

Jim said...

Roger -

"it should be noted that both Gates and the Cambridge folks apparently came to their senses within 24 hours, and got it resolved."

Apparently they didn't. Gates has gone to the media claiming that he was racially profiled, and now Crowley is talking about a defamation suit because Gates' continues to claim that he is a racist.

So much for a "post-racial" presidency, Obama's fanned the flames and encouraged "his friend Skip" to keep going so now this is going to keep on being news until he puts Gates back in his box.

Roger J. said...

Jim--thanks for the update--I clearly am 24 hours behind the news cycle--Volokh was reporting yesterday that Gates and Cambridge had issued a joint statement.

Alas. My bad. And worse for the country.

traditionalguy said...

A J Lynch...The President has not made any known moves towards outsourcing our military. I am trying to read a map based upon the next piece Obama needs in the puzzel he is working. The Global Climate Crisis is now inserting its propaganda ideology into the Pentagon. The money now spendable on the Defense Department has been pre-spent bailing out the Democrat's friends. But the House passed Cap and Trade Tax revenue added onto all energy usage can be directed in part into the Climate Crisis thru a Global military enforcing treaties to stop air usage on the planet without permission. Got to protect those coastal Naval bases from flooding, you know. Am I crazy for seeing what is going on in plain sight? You are correct that Obama is not the brains behind this new Aristocratic Global Governance. He is their temporary Trojan Horse working with a large alliance of enemy forces wanting revenge on America for organizing and leading the "Free World" for the last 60 years. His foreign policy has become Obama's personal wink/outreach to those enemies. Freedom is not seen as a rational goal by these New Ruling Aristocrats. By well intentioned Affirmative Action for Blacks and Women in the USA, we have birthed a New Aristocracy that sees no reason to suffer outsiders or give them any respect or power sharing. (See, Larry Summers experience at Harvard, and also see, Gates' attitude towards relations with an above average hard working American policeman). Their code word to describe mere American common folks is "Stupid", meaning they have no power and don't even realize it yet. Sarah Palin has recently emerged as their worst nightmare, because she is confident in her education level and her superior people skills, but she is not one of them.

Bruce Hayden said...

The last five Democrat candidates for presidetns: Dukakis, Bill Clinton, Gore, Kerry and Obama. All Ivy Leaguers. Talk about a party of snobs and an oligarchy.

Let me suggest that this is partially a result of the schisoid nature of the Democratic party. It is the party of the common man, run by an elite who wouldn't have most of their constituents to their own houses. At least traditionally, Republican candidates were much closer to their base - upper middle class whites all.

Part of it traditionally for that elite has maybe been some sort of guilt at being blessed with enormous advantages through an accident of birth.

But the other side, I think, is that they really do think that they are smarter than everyone else, and as a result are better able at governing. The problem is that that ultimately results in some form of socialism, whether it be communism, fascism, Naziism, or just plain Obamaism. The idea is that man is smart enough to set up a government that can protect its citizens through making the important decisions for them. Something like that. The problem is that human affairs are far too complex for even the best of the best to control successfully, esp. when human nature is selfish. So, the solution to that is state control for the betterment of the people who would, absent that control, make wrong decisions, some of which may actually thwart the designs of their betters. Of course, the Communists, and maybe the Nazis, believed that this was just temporary, until man could be molded into obedience.