There's hope for society yet.

Obama takes the most intelligent approach on an issue that touches everything wrong with society.

I plan for this post to be an intelligent discussion on ideas. Idealism vs. Reality.


  1. Racism is bad. Attempting to judge someone simply based on the color of their skin, especially in light of America's history, is the most closed-minded and harmful character trait an individual can possess.

    Yet unfortunately, the majority of violent crimes and the majority of imprisoned convicts are minorities, even though by definition, they make up a minority of society as a whole.

    Police officers every day walk a fine line protecting citizens from harm without infringing on the basic freedoms bestowed upon all citizens. Law enforcement lives in the gray area. In the name of readiness and cautiousness, always assuming anyone is capable of committing a crime, without assuming that any individual is a criminal.

    President Obama understands the complexity of what happened between Boston police Sgt. James Crowley and Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. Rather than denounce the police officer as racist, which as a black politician who have been deemed as acceptable in terms of political correctness, he brought both men together to have an important conversation in as casual an environment as the White House allows. President Obama did not succumb to the knee-jerk, PC reaction, rather sought to bring society above political correctness and work towards genuine solutions.

    I believe the general theory in society (and mine as well) is that education and crime are inversely related. The more educated individuals in an area, the lower the crime rate.

    I want all of your ideas on everything that comes out of this specific situation. Racial profiling is wrong, but police officers argue that it is effective. Even though education is funded by the government, better socioeconomic areas produce more high school graduates and more kids who go on to college. How do we reduce crime rates, especially crimes committed by low income households and minorities?

    I believe calm, rational, intelligent conversations, such as the one arranged by President Obama are the first step in the right direction.

  2. Make sure to read the article all the way to the end where the black police officer on the scene, Sgt. Leon Lashley, provides his thoughts. Specifically, his defense of his coworker and his actions and addressing Gates' accusations.

  3. Tag this post with some topics; if you prefer, I can do it

    I love your intro comment: "Racism is bad." Well said!

  4. I general, I tend to initially side with the police officers in any kind of case like this. I tend to side with those who have professional training and experience in a field and would rather assume that individuals are good people, rather than assume that there are racists in every organization.

    I would allow police officers to take a liberal view of 'probable cause', because I believe a wrongful arrest that prevents a crime is a better miss than a violent crime committed that a police officer could have prevented.

    I understand why police officers use race, along with clothing, mannerisms, and location, to increase their cautiousness and readiness. On the other hand, I dream of a world where race can be removed from that equation. When the race percentage of criminals matches the race percentage of society as a whole.

  5. Affirmative action is also very closely tied to racial profiling, but should be a more productive line of reasoning for this discussion. If the way for minorities to produce more college graduates and fewer criminals, wouldn't the government want more minorities attending college in the first place? Affirmative action increases the percentage of minorities in college, even if that means accepting a black or Hispanic kid over a more qualified Asian kid.

    The main argument for affirmative action is that tit improves society, not only by bringing the lower end of society up, but also by increasing diversity on college campus. Diversity is great. It leads to a wide variety of thoughts and arguments and intelligent discussions and exposure to ways of life one never knew existed. It increases comprehension and cooperation among the entire student body. Diversity is a good thing.

    The argument against affirmative action is that it is lowering the standard by which high school students are held to if they strive to attend college. It does not necessarily encourage minority high school students to work harder to get into a university, it simply makes it easier for them to get in.

    I personally believe that affirmative action at the collegiate level is the wrong place to try and increase diversity. If the government wants to increase education and decrease crime, I am ok with them spending more money on schools in low income areas than they spend on elementary schools in high income areas. Improving education from the ground up will mean that minorities will be able to compete for college entrance without specific help from the government. You won't have universities accepting less qualified minorities, you will have universities accepting the best students, which will match the racial composition of the rest of society.

  6. Holy crap, I didn't mean give it 46 different tags... do we really need the individual names of the two guys? Intelligence? I'm gonna drop "nebulous" on that tag

    Anyway I am VERY intrigued by the direction you took this thing. Your first reaction was - "do I side with the police on this one?" - and your second reaction was - "how do we go about improving the status of minorities in society?"

    By contrast, MY first reaction was - "what an amazing reaction by Obama to invite these guys over for a casual conversation." How cool is it that he did this? And also cool of both the guys involved to come and do it.

    There are many levels of awesome going on here. It is awesome political strategy to focus this on the individuals and a "privat discussion" about the issue - this takes the political focus away from the nation-wide racial issues that you were advancing, Aaron, and makes it less of a "summit" as suggested in the media, and more of an interpersonal dialogue.

    That gesture also points to a larger theme, that perhaps these issues are best addressed and solved on an interpersonal basis. And when two individuals on opposite sides of the spectrum can come together and hash things out, isn't that the best way to solve any problem?

    I thought this was a brilliant move to diffuse the media tension that can build up around stories like this, and also to potentially build mutual understanding between the two principals in the event. Paradoxically, by inserting himself as a mediator, Obama has been able to remove himself from the criticism on the topic and "let them talk it out", which is a masterstroke in my opinion.