The Hiller Instinct: Gates arrest
It may be more than we wanted to know about ourselves.
The arrest in Cambridge was a big deal! And not because the media made it big.
Understandably, the president, the professor and the policeman all want to move on, but America doesn't sound ready to:
Make that the two Americas--because there's a black version and a white version of what happened in Cambridge...and Monday's release of the police tapes won't change that, because different races will hear the words differently.
We can also forget the idea that President Obama's election miraculously made us post-racial...or beyond race: it obviously still deeply divides us.
The threat to the president is that his initial comments on Cambridge will decrease his support, which is already tumbling.
To get the programs he wants--like health care--Obama must maintain his popularity. If he loses it, his ambitious agenda could collapse.
I think we can all agree that the three major figures in this morality play have all lost.
The president was non-presidential; the professor sounded as if wanted to teach the police officer a lesson as much as he wanted a national teaching moment; and the police officer's decision to arrest the professor at his home is easy to second guess.
But here's something we don't have to guess about: the beer in the White House.
It will be a fine photo-op that may make some of us feel better.
But it won't change anything.
I'm Andy Hiller, that's my instinct
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