this is 2009! 71 Comments


My little brother and I were entering grocery store after a stop at the local Thai restaurant.

We were straddling along by the door as two hick-like white boys were passing by when we heard one say ‘they spit a lot!’ after seeing bro spit on the ground outside.

Who is they?’ he asked loudly while seemly appearing shell-shocked.

‘This is 2009!’ An older woman was shaking her head as she heard all parts of the conversation.

They walked away with fear and heads hung low, as if he would beat them up!

I was watching the news conference when Obama made the now infamous comment:

Cambridge police acted stupidly!”

Indeed, the hoopla delighted me. Police brutality & racial profiling was the topic at hand for two weeks. And then he backpedaled!

He should have stood his ground and fought the black men of America who have been profiled again and again for years.

One of the reasons I live in DC metro is because these kinds of things do not happen as often as it happens in the rest of US, including NYC and California.

Right now, I worry more about cops profiling me more so that being victimized by a civilian. Things have happened to me in the past and I hate the fact that I fear those who are supposedly hired to protect and serve us.

This is a big issue and one I think Obama should have stood ground on. Like my brother said, ‘this is 2009.’ The president is black or at least half, there should be no ‘they.’

If Obama can’t stand his ground who then can!

71 Responses to “this is 2009!”

  1. 1 helen

    He did back peddle a little but he is the President after all. He acted viscerally when he said the Police “acted stupidly” but he is the president he should have known all the facts before he made his comment. He knows what his critics would say about it and shouldn’t have fallen for the trap (Distracting him form the work of heath care reform)It certainly is understandable why he said it though and I do agree with him. If he had only said it SEEMED like the police acted stupidly and police have been known to act that way in the past but he will wait till he got all the facts before he made the statement…it would have been better.

  2. 2 Tobian

    A president should really measure his words before he speaks, even if he believes in them. Using the words ‘stupid’ to describe any action of a policeman is unpredisential and pretty darn stupid. Also very un-Obama … and he paid for it. Compared to other ‘mis-statements’ by other politicians, not a big deal.

    Your brother and spitting — come on! yes, it’s 2009 … stop spitting all over the place! Jesus. It’s a public health hazard and just plain disgusting. I hate it when it rains in my city, not because it messes up my hair, but because it gets to bottom of my pants wet … and all i can imagine is all the people who spit (and pee) on the sidewalk, and me picking up their washed up spit up on my pants. yuck.

    The poor white kids you chased away … ah, yeah, i pity them. I can see one of my brothers easily making the same statement. He takes some serious issue to East African immigrants (excepting Kenyans) in his city who he says have come without any sense of hygiene(and can’t be taught, nor opt to learn), and are always spitting miraq and ak’ta all over the place.

    having said that, i also have another brother who spits once in my pretense, if he remembers … because he knows it irritates me.

  3. 3 Nolawi

    ayee tobian,

    the topic is not about spitting.. infact i hate spitting… my brother does occasionally spit.. which i hate but who cares the topic is not about that…

    he didnt say the police was stupid… he said they acted stupidly.

    and the did infact act stupidly.. he should have stood his ground on this matter… while still handling the healthcare issue… ‘in his own words “he has to takle more than one issue at the same time” he has to represent me and my issue… not just the moderate republicans…

  4. 4 Korki

    I don’t think Obama should’ve involved in this when he has other VERY important things to worry about and i also think that both the professor and the police overreacted. I don’t think the situation would have escalated if the cop approached the professor with out atitude and explained the 911 call about the break in and if the proffesor showed his id and explained he was the one who break in.

  5. 5 Tobian

    “he didnt say the police was stupid… he said they acted stupidly.”

    ok. to slpit hair back at you, i didn’t say he said the police were stupid. i said he described their actions by using the word ‘stupid’.

    regardless, i think the word ‘stupid’ and its derivations have no place in a president’s diction … except perhaps when he needs to describe himself after using a word like ‘stupid’ to describe other people.

    that and what Koki said.

  6. 6 helen

    The man was in his house, for f**ks sake so I disagree with korki. And the cop should have let him be after he proved he was in his house no matter how much attitude he showed them as long as he didn’t threaten him, and he didn’t. Cops are not owed respect just because they ware a uniform. But they seem to think they do deserve it. I am sure the cop was thinking this black man, a Harvard professor at that, thinks he is better than me so I will show him. They do that all the time.
    That being said the president should have been cautious with his words.

  7. 7 Hidaya

    I agree with Nolawi on the main point, having said that President Obama shouldnt have said anything until he had all the facts, especially when the facts turned out to be that the white policeman had a black officer boss who thought him good enough to teach other white officers about racial profiling,(that is what I heard on the news here) oops backfired spectaculary didnt it.

    But once he made the comment he shoudlnt have backed way because the essence of what he infact said was true.

    In the UK we also have racial profiling and it is used unfairly to target young black males, mind you I have never heard of a black middle aged Professor breaking into his own home arrested for disorderly conduct, maybe it is coming. We would have benefited from a frank discussion happening in the US about racial profiling as much as America would have done.

  8. 8 Korki

    @ Helen
    How can you be sure what the cop was thinking? unless you saying that’s what every white cop thinking. the cops’ job was to nock the door and ask the prof to show his id to make sure he wasn’t the one who’s break in (if he doesn’t know who lives there) and the professor should’ve have shown his id; case closed. but if the cop nock the door and ask the prof to identify himself with out explaining about the 911 call, i don’t blame him for flipping out.

  9. 9 Nolawi

    he showed him his ID… and was arrested after the fact!

  10. 10 Mamitu

    I don’t fault Obama for backpedaling, I think he has health care as his priority right now and wants to see it through. And quick polling may have revealed to him what we know now, that involving in this fight is going to hurt his popularity and thus imbolden the republicans to resist the push for affordable health care debate. And we should not forget that Obama is a politician and self preservation is always at play in what ever politicians do.

  11. 11 Korki

    yes they said after he showed him his id he was screaming and accusing the officer racial bias and got arrest for disorderly conduct. Trust me i’m not on the cops side because i know how arrogant and power hungery most cops can be. i’m just saying that we all have to be present to know exactly what went down.

  12. 12 helen

    @ Korki:
    Like Nolawi said… he showed his ID… the officer established the professor was in his home that should have been it. He should have just left. That is his job after all to deescalate tense situations. Having an attitude is not a crime, I have no doubt Gate had an attitude, I would. Gates doesn’t have to show him deference just because he is an officer… I am willing to bet anything if it was a white professor it wouldn’t have happened.

  13. 13 Nolawi

    Thank you helen … if he was white the cops would not have been called in the first place….

  14. 14 Selam2

    Addressing racial profiling is not a distraction, even for the President. Racism is an issue that still need to be addressed. Even though we now have a black president, America is not yet finished with work on racism. I agree using the word “stupid” was not a wise move by Mr. President. It is a missed opportunity for honest dialog and learning. Instead of trying to amend his words and minimizing the topic with an afternoon beer pow wow, he could have used the opportunity to educate the people.

  15. 15 Anonx

    I kind of think Gates resented at having to prove his identity because he is a ‘widely recognized icon’, anyone who does not know that, then would/should know as soon as you enter his home and see his pictures with other icons.
    I think the cop knew whose house he entered if not before entering the house, after…. his decision to follow his procedure book and treat Gates as a suspect until proven innocent drew ‘don’t you know who I am?’ response. The cop’s reason can be racial or it can be class warfare, which I think it is.

  16. 16 Anonx

    ‘If voting changed anything, they had make it illegal’

    It is illegal in so many parts of the world.

  17. 17 hilarious

    As much as Obama has been actively engaged in non-presidential agendas such as this comment or the college football poll….it is destined to have a mishap soon or later. Perhaps he got the foot-in-mouth disease from the vice president :) I think anyone who finds their friend’s right being violated in such a way would utter what is the first thing in their mind. Even the president. He shouldn’t be disinfranchise whites though if he plans to run for second term they got him elected.

  18. 18 Wudnesh

    In Obama’s own words, “police overreacted,” Gates “probably overreacted as well.”
    “My sense is you have got two good people in a circumstance in which neither of them were able to resolve the incident in the way that it should have been resolved,” he said.

    Thank you Mr. President. We agree….They both overreacted!

    As for Obama backpedalling, puHleaaase!
    In the first place, He should have applied the brakes to his tongue….and act like the smart president we voted for. But I appreciate his quick backpedalling too….And I do not think many people feel betrayed by his act as you do. Rather, I am proud our black president doesn’t stray ;)

  19. 19 nolawi

    oh puhlease you ladies do not know how they cops treat the young black men…

    what is a black president good for if he is not ready to fight to make change…

    where is the change? where he has promised us when he ran with change as his platform… so far I am disappointed….

    hillary would stand up more …

  20. 20 haymanot

    That’s reality. Racism will NEVER end until it is no longer at the forefront of our consciousness. When people no longer have “preconceived notions” about a person simply based on his/her appearance. It maybe 2009, but as a whole, we are trapped in the mindset of 1909. We can complain all we want but I’ve never heard of a proactive bunch of complainers.

  21. 21 haymanot

    and Nolawi,

    it will take more than one half-black president to change this country–the odds are against him. Because if racism was really “out of the way” nobody would’ve have even brought up his race to begin with.

  22. 22 datdude

    i guess frederick douglas was right, take that history teacher 11th grade and all you dubois disciples…


    datdude 1 —world 0

  23. 23 Mekdaddy

    TOBIAN, this is the brother in question…you don’t know anything about anything or shit about shit, you are probably white, or anti black or something, you missed the whole issue. Anyways i had a cold, and no tissue’s were in reach, lol.

  24. 24 Mekdaddy

    And about OBAMA, he needs to advocate more. I was proud of him and his comments, and am not aware of any backpedaling that occurred, he did not take his words back, but because of idiots like you guys and white people saying there are more important issues besides racism, he downplayed it.

  25. 25 .mike

    I beg to differ, Nolawi!

    There is political pragmatism and there is advocacy and unfortuanetly the two dont ALWAYS go hand-in-hand.

    I believe President Obama (ah! I love saying president :) ) acted ‘stupidly’ by speaking about it. He muffled the message about Healthcare! It’s unfortunate that racial profiling is alive and well, however, I believe presidents should remain disciplined to push through their agenda.

    Our president doesnt make many mistakes like this and he clearly did this time around.

    my 2 cents.

  26. 26 Mamitu

    In my humble opinion hilarious, Wudnesh and .mike are spot on.

    I think there will be plenty of time for advocating once President Obama leaves office. For now he has to focus to get his agenda through.

  27. 27 Korki

    I’m with Wudnesh, i think the most important thing right now is the ECONOMY because everyone affected by it black and white.

  28. 28 Nolawi

    i am not saying he should be a president for black ppl only… i just think he could have used the opportunity to bring awareness for the issue….

  29. 29 anonx


    I normally get you but didn’t on that one. Please explain. Maybe its because FD+DED aren’t taught much except for a mention in neither HS or GS or in February. I am “ancient” african american history challenged as you can see

  30. 30 anonx


    I normally get you but didn’t on that one. Please explain. Maybe its because FD+DED aren’t taught much except for a mention in neither HS or GS or Febr. uary. I am “ancient” african american history challenged as you can see

  31. 31 anonx

    Sorry for the duplicate.

  32. 32 Mekdaddy

    OH PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!! SOME OF YOUR COMMENTS REMIND ME WHY I DONT COMMMENT THAT MUCH! RACISM IS A PROBLEM, and he should do something about it now!

  33. 33 Korki

    @ Mekdaddy,
    Stop commening then!

  34. 34 datdude


    my views on this matter are not kosher, I don’t want to be banned for exposing my uncle tom like sentiments. ;)

  35. 35 Mekdaddy

    maybe i will korki, oops…did it again

  36. 36 anonymous

    Here’s an allegory I heard recently:
    “In a 16 man pile-up the couple of guys at the top will say ‘let’s undo this pile-up in an orderly manner so that no-one gets injured and we do this efficiently’ Those at the bottom will want the pile-up to end right that second.”

    For those of you who haven’t had to sustain the wrath of the thuggish police and racism overall, the president shouldnt concern himself with such a small issue. However, for those whose life is impeded daily by racism, this is an issue that needs resolution right that second.
    Remember there are more blacks than there are unemployed Americans, why is it that racism is less an issue than unemployement (although sadly, many of the unemployed are also black… I know I’m not making sense)

  37. 37 Wore Bicha

    Are we seriously having a discussion about how the president of the United States should have fought the black man’s fight? Seriously?

    How idiotic is it to say, Obama should have sparked the race-issue in America over his F*** Up?

    After all, only a black president would jump of his chair, and defend a black man who might, or might not, be at fault. And as we learned later, he rushed himself because it was a “professor friend” who was arrested, not “any” black man.

    This sort of habesha topic that makes no sense is, what is really “STUPID”.

    Obama owed an apology, and he knows it. The only reason he wouldn’t do it is because he was not willing his political opponents on the other side of the isle, a “Talking Point Memo”. That’s it.

    Maneh Nolawi . . . Ibakih Ye-mender wore mender yikira.

    We are tired of this low-standard that the kinds of you hold for anything that is “black”. The fact is, and would remain to be, he is the president of this nation, and not the nations of BLACKS.

    So your point is, well . . . you have no point.

  38. 38 Mekdaddy

    good comment anonymous, oh please Wore Bicha, please get your head out of whatever place you live in, and look at whats happening all through america. Gentrification, is displacing our people from cities like Washington DC, just as it is affecting blacks, whether you like it or not, ethiopians are black and anyone with dark skin faces racism. Practices such as redlining, excluding loans out of black communities, unemployment rates among blacks is more than double of the whites. anyways if you are not sympathetic to black causes, how can we expect others to be. Thats my problem with some ethiopians who think they are better than blacks, nobody is better than anybody, some ethiopians are more racist than hick white people. GET UP STAND UP, stand up for our rights!!!!!!!

  39. 39 meskel

    Wore Bicha,

    This topic is not abesha… you can disagree all you want, you uncle tom wanna be who just came over the boat and thinks america is not racist because you earn 11$ at 7-eleven.

    Get some respect for Nolawi who is doing more for the likes of you than you can ever dream of doing.

    Get some respect and disagree respectfully, and don’t say the ‘abesha’ for every little thing you disagree with…

  40. 40 spacefog

    Yeah , America is racist in every meaning of the term.
    The Prof , was right to stand for his rights. I wish he pursued a law suit.This woudl have never happned to a white prof.
    Obama said nothing wrong the first time. Yeah , CP acted stupidly.

  41. 41 Wore Bicha

    Oh now all of you crack heads can’t handle a fuckin’ dissent in opinion huh. It explains who the readers of this place are.

    My fault for coming in and messing up your ALUBALTA.

  42. 42 Nolawi

    Dude, next time you post insult like crackhead minamin you are banned from this site.. i try not to censor anyone but don’t insult people.

  43. 43 hilarious

    Does racism exists in US? yes! But also in Ethiopia. Specially informs of bigotry, ethnicity, class & perhaps even in religion. It is plausible that a Habesha person might face more mistreatments by Habesha in Ethiopia, than by “ferege” in the US. Even if some are racist, I have not be confronted with it face on. But I have been punched,shoved and chased by ye derg abiot tebaki.

  44. 44 Wore Bicha

    Maneh Nolawi, don’t be so obvious in your responses, trying to get yours in. What is insulting truly is what one of your commenters had said, and the foul and utterly disgraceful language they sadly chose.

    So calling a spade a spade is never a crime last time i checked.

    Are you saying i can’t curse but i can cause chaos and mayhem in many other forms, like using smart language?

    I mean don’t be a hypocrite. Try to hold a leveled playing field for everyone.

    What is it really? A “crackhead” is if anything, a word thrown to tease without offense. Not in its literal sense, it is a figure of speech.

    I am sure you wouldn’t silence the one below huh. Are you so low that you would let your ego brushed at any cost?
    meskel wrote:

    Wore Bicha,
    This topic is not abesha… you can disagree all you want, you uncle tom wanna be who just came over the boat and thinks america is not racist because you earn 11$ at 7-eleven.
    Get some respect for Nolawi who is doing more for the likes of you than you can ever dream of doing.
    Get some respect and disagree respectfully, and don’t say the ‘abesha’ for every little thing you disagree with…

  45. 45 Nolawi

    Take it anyway you want… I reserve the right to moderate as I see fit.

  46. 46 fanos

    i guess in contrast to some people, i didn’t even think Obama said enough originally and was amazed that he managed to take back what little he did say. all he seemed to say was that he can personally vouch for the professor guy, like thats the most significant part of the story or something. in defense of the cop, i think the police in cambridge are usually super friendly and respectful whether you are white or black. and the professor guy was obviously important enough to get off scotfree, so obviously its not my place to be concerned about him.
    but racial profiling happens in places where the cops are not friendly and the victims didn’t go to harvard and those are the people obama should have kept in mind, not his harvard professor friend. thats what made his answer seem pathetic to me. like people said he didn’t seem prepared to answer the question beyond defending his friend first and foremost. he needs to have some advisers around him who should keep him in touch with racial issues so that he can be prepared with deeper and more thought out answers that will actually have an impact.
    he made that speech about race and said a lot more sensitive things when he wasn’t even president and nobody had anything but admiration for him because he stood his ground and said what he needed to say firmly. and now he is president he has even more power. he seems to have a strategy for everything but it seems like all the strategy he had/has for black people is how to get their votes. i really didn’t get that weak apologetic stuff of his.. this is america where a guy runs off to argentina to have an affair and he doesn’t even have to apologize much and yet Obama thinks he owes people an apology for speaking the truth? if anybody is setting the bar lower/higher for him, its himself. and sooner or later, this approach of his is gonna affect all of us. i’m not aggressive or anything but i don’t want white people thinking i should be apologizing to them for every little thing like their president.
    and btw racial profiling is part of the process that lands so many black people in prisons and its part of the reason why so many of them remain unemployed because a criminal record usually disqualifies people from jobs, directly or indirectly. so i think its his job to address it. but Mekdaddy, sew feet atitfa please?..

  47. 47 Wore Bicha

    @Nolawi – Well you reserve the right to moderate, but don’t be a hypocrite and a fat loser, and in public at that. You must think people are naive. Moderate all you want, but it is not hard to post here. You CANNOT ban me. IP Address is easily manipulated. So in the long run, you are better fit to play fair.

    That’s the only way you can have a reasonable and fair debate. Believe me if i am called out, count on it i will retaliate.

    Would you like it if someone attacked your family? Hell-to-the-NO. So why the hell do you think others should put up with it.

    You can’t even address a fair question that i had presented to you. Opting to say “take it like you want”. If you take the time to respond, don’t be so low about it.

    You post a topic, and like all the other topics, the comment ticks upwards by folks going at each other, instead of the topic at hand. How insane is that?

    Moderate, in fact. I agree with you on that. Moderate a whole lot, because so far the comments are amusing in a lot of ways, which can say a lot about what you write, or the people who read it.

    So, be fair is my advise. Stop the insult to an injury thing.

  48. 48 Hidaya

    Wow I didnt realise that views on racial profiling was so varied and so controversial in the US. Here we only have two views and it depends on your race and nothing else.

    For all non white ethnic minorities racial profiling is deeply unfair because it exclusively targets individuals of a particualr race or ethnic ocmmunity because of their race and ethnicity, in law this is called discrimination .

    The whites generallly promote the view of “if you dont have anything to hide why are you refusing to be harrassed based on racial profiling” and because racial profile is not part of their lives they dont realise that the police are not nice or polite about this and very little can provoke a violent reaction from them and even politetly questionig them why one is stopped is seen as hostile and can once again provoke violent reaction, you can be falsely accused for a short time and even falsely imprisoned while police check out your personal details, they can be nasty about it and make it last longer that they should and sometimes burecracy and paper pushing makes it even longer and all this inconvenient humilaiting stuff can happen to people who have done done anything wrong..

    This should not be happening in a fair society and in the UK it does not even help crime figures to come down, because while the police is busy racial profiling some communities who may or may not all be labeled “as potential offenders”, other crime rates committed by other racial groups go up ,and the other thing that goes up in smoke is the relationship between community policing and the particular communities they police, even if the crime rate amongst a community is high and that is taken into consideration in racial profiling how does it help alienating the community that would have assisted you in getting the criminals out of their own communities if they know you discriminatorally racially profiled them all as potential criminals anyway? racial profiling puts everybody’s back up, alienate communties and is not really all that beneficial for policing or for race relations or in the reduction of crime in the long run…That is what racial profiling means in the UK..


    I am curious on your views about this and I didnt get the cryptic comment..will not use the UT word,lol but I am thinking does he mean political pragmatism? or skpepticism?…ok say I am even a little bit right because I managed to think all this in a very hectic week :) selamat mate..

  49. 49 leo

    Please block this idiot(wore bicha) ass! J

  50. 50 Totit

    Obvioulely WereBEcha
    It looks like u r an avide reader of Nolawi urself…It looks like u know the inside out including who is here…

  51. 51 Addis Bete

    It is 2009 and voting is illegal in Eritrea. Hard to believe but true. I wonder what Amichew Nolawi is going to say.

  52. 52 anonx

    Addis– you are coming in from reading a hate site. No vote! hard to believe not in an authoritarian state, hard to believe, a make believe one like that say in Egypt or Ethiopia.

  53. 53 spacefog

    Nols, are you following the ” White people stole my car” stories. It reminded me of this discussion and thought you might want to google it, It you haven’t yet.

  54. 54 Nolawi

    @ spacefog:
    hymm never heard about it!

  55. 55 Anonx

    Nolawi, Now this is racism in 2009: the controversy over Obama’s upcoming back to school speech. Many ‘red’ school district and parents have vowed never to show Obama’s speech and come up with some bizarre excuses from calling his speech socialist/Marxist indoctrination to asking that they first vet the president of the US. Obama, they are claiming, is bad for their kids. Of course he is, not much has changed, and in their world view every black person is bad for their kids. The permutation of labels (whether the controversy is health care or back to school speech or even the black man campaign) is a replacement for nigger.

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