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Racism is an ill in society that should be wiped out completely. America has been a long victim of racial discrimination, since the time of the famous Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. There have been a great number of figures who fought this evil without success although they made an impact. The only problem is that even with a democratic government system the citizens still want to hold on to this illusion.

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The Cambridge police incident that happened on 16, 2009 concerning Sgt. J. Crowley was definitely avoidable. It was inevitable that the reporter, Lucia Whalen reported a suspected break-in to the police, by two black men. In her description, she said that the men had bag packs and were prying open a house she saw reason to report the matter. Having been close to the place, the officer opted to respond to the matter promptly. "Since I was the only officer on location and had my back to the front door as I spoke with her, I asked her to wait outside for other responding officers while I investigated further,” Crowley said. It is quite vivid that, at this moment, the officer was doing his duty. The whole event took a wrong twist when the officer confronted one of the two reported men, Professor Gates of Harvard University asking him to step forward and speak with him. The professor resisted the instruction proving very uncooperative.

The fact that Mr. Gates failed to respond positively to the officer after questioning became the stumbling block of the matter. The officer became agitated that he was not respected while the professor felt abused. It was advisable for the officer to be more elaborative and say the reason for his presence there. This would have been more direct, “Excuse me, sir, I am responding to a phone call reporting a break-in attempt to that house number…” It would have ruled out the idea of racism and stereotyping on Crowley’s part. It is clear from both Carlo’s and Crowley’s reports that the idea of racism was brought up by Mr. Gates himself. However, being in his residence, the professor was not in any position to suggest any of the allegations launched against the officer. Officer Crowley reacted after a long and unending accusation of being racist, he held Gates for disorderly conduct when he created a scene on being questioned. Just like the committee of investigators said, the arrest was not necessarily seeing that the house reported was in the owner’s hand. The committee thinks that it was a clear case of poor communication between them.

It might seem true that the officer was racist towards his approach, as it was made up by the professor. This is because the coincidence was; the officer was white and Mr. Gates black. It becomes tricky for one to determine the party responsible for this incident because all parties are defensive. A critical assessment of the events of the incident proves that Gates was responsible for the whole issue. Looking at the facts correctly, it is open that his account is a figment of his imagination and did not happen. He resisted the authority this shows that he could not reason with the officer who had no ill motives. Claiming to be a victim of “racial profiling”(Times, 2009) is not an excuse to fuss despite his continued claim. It is the citizen's duty to uphold and respect the authority however bad the situation is, he should have accepted the request and addressed the officer accordingly.

A proper dialogue would have proven to the Cambridge police that there was no cause for alarm. Explaining that he had to break the door due to the fact that he misplaced his keys could have been easy for the officer to understand, this would have been the most ethical way to solve the misunderstanding. The burden of the blame falls on the professor’s shoulders, who went an extra step to even causing a scene and disrespecting Sergeant Crowley publicly. Officer Crowley acted according to the laws that are enforced by the EEC and were in his jurisdiction. The fact that, during the whole incident on Ware Street, the officer did not retaliate the accusation in any way as stated in the reports of both officers disqualifies any lawbreaking.

More so, Gates even chose to be abusive to the officer in the line of duty, he told him, “Ya, I’ll speak with your mama outside...” This is disrespectful despite everything it is clear that Gates took out his frustrations on the officer, showing that he failed to realize that the officer was only trying to ensure security in the area. With the involvement of the president in this matter, one is forced to think that the officer broke the law, according to the procedural steps of an arrest Crowley lived up to every one of them. The professor wanted to show that he knew people with power and thought to be above the law contrary to his remarks of not being above the law. The head of the Cambridge police department stood up for his colleague in these turbulent times this is a gesture that even with criticism from all around the police body had taken the right approach.

Excessive force is the violation of a person’s right by a law enforcement officer. Suggesting any use of excessive force by the officer on the professor is out of the question, from the recorded accounts, it is clear to come to the conclusion that Crowley was acting by the book. He arrested Gates in a very lenient way I would say, getting this from the act of loosening the handcuffs after complaining they were tight. A stick to help in his walking was brought to him, a complete show of proper and friendly conduct from the officer. Discretion is the ability of one to make a choice and act in accordance with it this decision is usually from a list of other possible actions. Officers are usually trained to face a large number of situations, but when faced with a new one, they employ discretion.

During the Ware Street incident, the officer employed a great deal of this skill. When the Cambridge police officer was at a war of words with the professor, he chose not to retaliate the action by maintaining his cool and still insisted on the law. Critiques could not see that he was procedural and practiced moderation throughout the scenario. For the Cambridge police, sentiments from the president and other leaders were a breach of trust and unnecessary considering that Crowley had in the recent past handled a case with Reggie Lewis; a basketball pro whom he gave CPR. The question the haters should have asked themselves is “If the officer was able to perform this action on a black individual, is he racial?” These leaders found an excuse to channel their own frustrations on the matter. Mayor Denise Simmons made comments that there was racism in the country and even named states that are affected “Is there a problem with race issues in the country? Yes” she said, “Is there a problem with it in Massachusetts? Yes, there is. In Cambridge, we are a small part of society we’re trying to be proactive..” She refuses to comment on the subject at hand.

According to the law, no person is to be treated differently whatever their position. Harvard University professors should not be treated differently from homeless people; this is to show that breaking the law is punished equally. The involvement of the president painted a picture of impunity and to top up the matter, the fact that Gates was set free confirmed this. After the president’s sentiments on the matter showed that the expected reaction was that the officer should ignore the whole story because of his post and connection. Nevertheless, it was not the case because the officer acted according to the law that he surely protects, this would work against the policy of ‘serve and protect’ (Civil Rights Act, 1964).

What is gotten from this is that there is a force that is trying to work against the enforcement of the law. This force is solid and made up of people with power and influence; this is a deteriorating factor towards the building of the nation’s growth and stability. All citizens, whatever their position must be responsible for their actions and be punished.

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