By Janice S. Ellis, Ph.D., Kansas City, MO –
Gates-Crowley affair fueled by racial profiling on the part of the arresting police officer begs for a broader national conversation. Whether it was racial profiling, police power brandishing, or perhaps male testosterone unleashed, the Henry Louis Gates-James Crowley event and its particular impact results in more questions that need fair and open dialogue if we want to go past the tagging and stop falling in the same old racial rut,more like racial pit.
The overriding question about the James Crowley, Henry Louis Gates incident: Why do we always avoid facing issues of race that is a part of our day-to-day lives in clear and subliminal ways across America and throughout the planet?
What would otherwise be thought to be regular encounters and common struggles take on a life of their very own, fueled by the racial stereotypes and labels that people hang on to and permit to color our world view. Do we care if they are accurate or wrong? Are we afraid to analyze their veracity, for fear it could take us out of our comfort zone, shatter the monochromatic world to which we naturally retreat? Do we actually believe we’ve a lot more to gain by staying cloistered and close minded than seeking the truth about others unlike ourselves?
What enlightenment and experience we can have if we break through the blinders of racial bigotry on all sides? How many more Crowley Gates like-events will it take for us to eventually get to the heart of the matter: quit jumping the gun, stop over- or under- responding, cease pulling away or raging, quit refusing or overcompensating, quit being reticent or too being enthusiastic only stop the extremes in regards to race.
Actual progress in race relations starts and develops with exactly how we believe, act and respond in our day-to-day meetings. Until our extreme reactions, in regards to issues of race end, normalcy, in all its significance, will continue to elude us as a society.
But before we venture abroad, we need to focus at home.
Until we are ready to take inventory on a person, group and social level, of those variables factual and fantastic that shape our approaches and activities as we socialize with other people who are distinct from ourselves, race will stay the tempest in the teapot.
So will greatness.
Gates-Crowley Affair: Fueled By Racial Profiling?
Edited and Reprinted with Permission of USAonRace.com