When incidents such as the one involving Henry Louis Gates Jr. happen, it is sometimes informative to ask oneself what would have happened between the two people in a free society. May I humbly suggest that the circumstances surrounding the police officer's arrival at the Gates' residence had nothing to do with racial issues, but rather a duty the state has appropriated large portions of to itself- security services for property owners.
So, in a free society, Mr. Gates, assuming he could ever make enough money to actually own the home he has now due to his career in hate thinly disguised as college material, would have contracted with a company to check on his house whenever suspicious circumstances occured. Someone, most likely someone very much like the police officer who came to his house, would show up and make sure everything was okay. It would be highly unlikely that Mr. Gates would become irate under such circumstances, and if he did, the company contracting with him would likely either terminate the contract or provide Mr. Gates, who apparently has disturbing reactions to particular skin colors, with a security person with a skin tone that does not precipitate his mental illness.
Given that the police officer was actually performing a role that one would find in a free society, rather than engaging in any of a thousand legal versions of theft, extortion, or intimidation, I can't say I feel much sympathy for Mr. Gates. I doubt whether arresting him for disturbance would have happened in a free society; he would have to be making an awful ruckus to disturb his neighbors enough for that to be legitimate.
Perhaps Mr. Gates should be thankful the police officer thought 'disturbance' rather than 'mental illness,' because if the police officer had thought 'mental illness' he could have dropped Mr. Gates off at the nearest psych ward for a three day monitoring period so that mental health professionals could determine whether Gates is a danger to himself or others.
Hurricane Katrina was a breaking point for me. To me, it was massive proof that government doesn't work visited upon black people. The day they started saying the government didn't work because of Bush's racism was the day I decided I would no longer give the accusation of racism the time of day. It is simply not an acceptable accusation, and most of the time it has absolutely nothing to do with the argument at hand. And, with regard to Katrina, it makes the resulting pro-government position even more nonsensical; how can you be for a large redistributive government to solve all your problems when you think it can fail due to one person's racism? You can't tell somebody is a racist when you look at them, so you have no way of keeping them out of the government! The argument is full of crap.
And so is Mr. Gates, for whom being an angry black man in America has been far more lucrative than being a thinking man in America has been for me.