We took note here last summer of the feebleness of New York Times columnist Charles Blow, and now he’s offered up another howler for our instruction. Last week he wrote to complain about the harassment young black males receive from police, and this time it was personal because his son, a Yale student, had been briefly detained at gunpoint on the University’s grounds. Blow’s son’s account went as follows:
“I did not pay him any mind, and continued to walk back towards my room. I looked behind me, and noticed that the police officer was following me. He spoke into his shoulder-mounted radio and said, ‘I got him.’
“I faced forward again, presuming that the officer was not talking to me. I then heard him say, ‘Hey, turn around!’ — which I did.
“The officer raised his gun at me, and told me to get on the ground.
“At this point, I stopped looking directly at the officer, and looked down towards the pavement. I dropped to my knees first, with my hands raised, then laid down on my stomach.
“The officer asked me what my name was. I gave him my name.
“The officer asked me what school I went to. I told him Yale University.
“At this point, the officer told me to get up.”
The officer gave his name, then asked my son to “give him a call the next day.”
No doubt this episode was unsetting to Blow and his son, who was apparently approached by the officer because he matched the description of a burglary suspect phoned in to police shortly before.
But Blow neglected to report one important detail of the episode: the Yale police officer who stopped him is black. Yale University, hardly a hotbed of reaction, felt compelled to push back against Blow’s tacit suggestion that this was an example of racist policing, as reported in the Washington Examiner:
“The officer, who himself is African American, was responding to a specific description relayed by individuals who had reported a crime in progress,” said a Monday email to Yale’s campus community. The email was first noticed by The Root, a black-centric news website.
“What happened on Cross Campus on Saturday is not a replay of what happened in Ferguson; Staten Island; Cleveland; or so many other places in our time and over time in the United States,” the email said.
The email is signed by Yale President Steve Salovey, Dean of Yale College Jonathan Halloway and Yale Police Department Chief Ronnell Higgins.
Higgins is also black.
Blow did not return a request for comment on why he omitted the race of the officer in his column or whether the race of the officer matters.
Of course not. It didn’t fit the The Narrative.