Friday, July 24, 2009

Another view of the Henry Louis Gates, Jr. arrest

A rather thought-provoking take on the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. has been posted on IReport by my fellow Pennsylvanian DesireG, where she makes some very interesting points on the circumstances of Gates' arrest, the opportunism of politicians and the the role that class, status and privilege play in situations such as this, a fact that many people don't like to talk about. Bringing up the recent but far-less covered assault on Trevor Casey in Toldeo, Ohio and the actual murder of Oscar Grant in Oakland, California, she wonders, where all the outrage was then?

For my part, while what happened to Gates was pretty distasteful, I think the whole incident provides a window on the intense narcissism and self-involvement of the United States in general and academia, in particular. Human beings are butchered like pigs in a slaughterhouse in the countries I report on in numbers greater than I can count, with nary a voice raised in protest, and yet it is the arrest of a privileged professor that causes people to be SHOCKED, SHOCKED.

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