Friday, July 31, 2009
Ya gotta love America. Two weeks ago, when Police Sgt. James Crowley and Harvard Prof. Henry Louis Gates Jr. were screaming at each other like Archie Bunker and George Jefferson, I'm fairly certain the last thing either man thought at that racially-charged moment was that they'd soon be sipping beer together and yukking it up in the White House Rose Garden with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. But that's precisely what they did this week, proving once again that anything can and will happpen in this nutty country of ours.
In a storybook ending worthy of Rodney "why can't we all just get along" King, the Massachusetts antagonists posed in what will go down in political history as the cheesiest, most embarrassing and most gratuitously sensational photo-op ever.
Crowley, after his highly controversial disorderly-conduct arrest of Prof. Gates in his own home, suggested to Obama, after the leader-of-the-free-world said the Cambridge police "acted stupidly," that the three of them get together for a White House brewsky to kiss and make up. A boneheaded suggestion which the president boneheadedly accepted.
With the four men seated at a round table with their frosty mugs of Blue Moon, Bud Light, Sam Adams Light and Buckler's beers, and with Biden and Obama with uprolled sleeves, the picture could not have looked more fake and insincere. What the hell the president intended to get out of this Kumbaya charade is anyone's guess. Neither Gates or Crowley will dislike each other any less, and race relations in America will not be changed one single iota.
That Obama felt the need to inject himself into this non-story and take away precious presidential time from pressing economic and health care matters is beyond belief. For an awfully bright guy who usually has laser-like focus on priorities, this time he's bungled it big time.