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Bizarre behaviour.

WITH reference to 'Bid to defuse race row' (GDN July 31), I submit the following.

The incident has been blown out of proportion more by the official statement made by US President Barack Obama than by the incident itself.

For the president to comment on an issue that firstly did not concern him directly (as president and that too at a Press conference on the apparently questionable medical bill) was inappropriate. Secondly, and more importantly, to admit that he was not aware of the facts and then press on to accuse the Cambridge police of 'acting stupidly', and expect that his actions would be inconsequential, is rather strange.

To go further and hold a "beer summit" to allegedly defuse the situation with Obama as an arbiter - when in fact he was a party to it in the first place - is so ironical. In his bid to rise above the race issue, he has literally jumped right into it.

Defusing the situation could have been better achieved by a simple apology from Obama for having inadvertently played the 'race card' in support of his personal friend, Dr Gates without having had the facts first hand.

No such apology has been officially offered and even Dr Gates has evaded this so far. So the question remains as to what Obama has really defused.

Immediately following the "beer summit", Sergeant Crowley gave a Press statement saying, "we agreed to disagree" meaning that nothing conclusive was achieved at the drink and makeup summit.

Interestingly, Dr Gates did not give a statement to the Press. This incident seemingly illustrates that it's a rather difficult task for Harvard graduates to say sorry after all.

M Chakravarty

Copyright 2009 Gulf Daily News

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Aug 5, 2009
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