Jason Zengerle writes:
As people continue to get worked up about Obama's comments on the Henry Louis Gates story, I think it's important to remember what the president didn't say. He did not call the behavior of James Crowley, the arresting officer, racist. He did call Crowley's behavior stupid. And, really, I think it's hard to reach any other conclusion when you consider that Crowley arrested Gates after he realized Gates was "breaking in" to his own home. That's stupid--and Obama's right to say so. Even if Gates did act belligerently toward Crowley, you'd hope Crowley would be professional enough not to respond by slapping cuffs on Gates and taking him down to the station. The "contempt of cop" charge--which is what these disorderly conduct charges are often nicknamed--is really nothing more than an absue of power by the cop.