brittany-hopwood_web.jpgLately, it seems like no matter what the president does, he just can’t get it right.

From the economy to local police arrests, President Barack Obama can’t help but stick his foot in his mouth. Prime example: the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.

Obama made a highly biased comment about the actions of the police that day without all the facts. But this isn’t about the president. I feel the president has taken enough heat for this, and the man that I feel is truly to blame has nearly gotten off scot-free.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. started this whole fiasco and won’t admit to his faults. As a representative of the black community, he should have more self-respect and know how a grown man with his reputation should behave.

His berating of the police officer, Sgt. James Crowley, and speaking to him with the conduct of a bad child, is embarrassing to the black community. He should know better. Not every white person who knocks on your door is out to get you. What’s more, Sgt. Crowley wasn’t even entering the scene looking for an African American, as the phone call between the dispatcher and the neighbor clearly shows.

Someone needs to remind Gates that this is the 21st century, in case he forgot, what with all the history in which he has obviously lost himself.

Now, let’s recap: A helpful neighbor oversteps and calls in what appears to be a crime. The police officer, simply doing his job, goes to investigate. Gates overreacts, and accuses the officer of racial profiling. The president suddenly becomes the villain.

Who’s really to blame here? I don’t know, but it seems to me like the “victim” of racial profiling could have prevented all this heartache had he simply answered the officer’s questions, proved his identity, and moved on from this incident and from the history of his fellow African Americans.

Brittany Hopwood, 19, of Lauderhill, is a senior at the University of South Florida in Tampa.