Recently on Fox News Channel’s ratings juggernaut, The O’Reilly Factor, conservative commentator Laura Ingraham claimed coverage of Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates’s arrest was overblown by the media. If I hadn't covered so much crime as a reporter, I would probably agree with her that there are more important issues in this age of health care overhauls, bailouts, and unemployment. But Ingraham couldn’t be more wrong.
After years of covering police and crime, the race issue permeates almost all interactions between police officers and minority communities, especially the black community. It took years of watching the police and black community interacting before I realized how strained this relationship is and how both sides often racially profile the other.
Gates Is Uniquely Suited to Address Police and Minority Relations
Big Moment Missed
Therefore, a prestigious black scholar, a respected white officer, and an American president who came from a white mother and a black father missed a monumental moment for a true lesson for all Americans.