Final Word from Monday, July 27, 2009

Barack Obama's effort to fix healthcare by further indebting the U.S. was interrupted by a clash between a black professor and a white police officer. The professor, Henry Louis Gates, was arrested for disorderly conduct after being suspected of breaking into what turned out to be his own home. Czech managers in their Jags, Beemers and Mercs can sympathize with Gates, who is being labeled by some as an angry black man for assuming the officer was using racial profiling. Many Czech managers have also developed a conditioned response to being pulled over. Their first, heated reaction is to assume the cop used class profiling to pick a bribery target. The idea that they did something wrong doesn't cross their mind. Sometimes, of course, it's an honest cop, and he has every right to haul the driver in for disorderly conduct. Usually, though, these angry white men get the benefit of the doubt.[Czech Republic Jaguar BMW Mercedes policeman]

Glossary of difficult words

racial/class profiling - the practice of substituting skin color/class for evidence as grounds for suspicion by law-enforcement officials;

disorderly conduct - unruly behavior constituting a minor offense;

Jag, Beemer, Merc - Jaguar, BWM, Mercedes;

conditioned response - a new or modified response to a stimulus after having been conditioned to the stimulus;

to pull someone over - to stop someone for a traffic violation;

heated - inflamed with passion or conviction;

to haul/take someone in - to arrest or detain someone.


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