Henry “Skip” Louis Gates Jr. has gotten so many threats since his infamous arrest he may have to move.
Harvard professor Henry “Skip” Louis Gates Jr. has gotten countless threats since his infamous arrest in July, and he may have to move.
During his first appearance since a visit to the White House last week, Henry shared some of the threats he’s been receiving, according to The Boston Herald. An excerpt from one e-mail read, “You should die; you’re a racist.”
He also told a crowd at the Martha’s Vineyard Book Festival on Sunday that a bomb threat had been posted outside his home on Ware Street in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Skip’s received so many threats that he eventually had to change his e-mail address and his cell phone number. Now Harvard is suggesting that he think about making his change a change of address. Henry hasn’t announced any decision on the matter as of now, though.
The written attacks stem from the professor’s July 16 arrest on charges of disorderly conduct, which took place in his home. Cambridge police Sgt. James Crowley was investigating reports of a possible break-in at the house, which Henry owns.
Henry’s charges were later dropped, but by that time it had sparked a national discussion on race, class and racial profiling, issues which the professor insists haven’t been resolved.
Tensions were still high when Skip and the James met for drinks at the White House, but they loosened up using a little humor. The educator even “offered to get [James’] kids into Harvard if he doesn’t arrest me again.”
“I said to him, ‘I would have sworn you were 6-feet-8 inches tall,’ ” Gates said. “He said, ‘I used to be, but I’ve lost 2 to 3 feet over the last two weeks.’ How can you be mad at a guy like that? When he’s not arresting you, Sgt. Crowley is a nice guy.”
One audience member applauded Henry on his sense of humor, and the scholar jokes that he “should have been funnier in the kitchen of my house on July 16.”
– Sonya Eskridge