Saturday, August 15, 2009

Compare and Contrast - Bob Dylan Vs. Henry Louis Gates

Wandering Jew - Bob Dylan - Picked Up For Being "Suspicious and Eccentric"

Rock legend Bob Dylan was treated like a complete unknown by police in a New Jersey shore community when a resident called to report someone wandering around the neighborhood.

Dylan was in Long Branch, about a two-hour drive south of New York City, on July 23 as part of a tour with Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp that was to play at a baseball stadium in nearby Lakewood.

A 24-year-old police officer apparently was unaware of who Dylan is and asked him for identification, Long Branch business administrator Howard Woolley said Friday.

"I don't think she was familiar with his entire body of work," Woolley said.

The incident began at 5 p.m. when a resident said a man was wandering around a low-income, predominantly minority neighborhood several blocks from the oceanfront looking at houses.
The police officer drove up to Dylan, who was wearing a blue jacket, and asked him his name. According to Woolley, the following exchange ensued:

"What is your name, sir?" the officer asked.

"Bob Dylan," Dylan said.

"OK, what are you doing here?" the officer asked.

"I'm on tour," the singer replied.

A second officer, also in his 20s, responded to assist the first officer. He, too, apparently was unfamiliar with Dylan, Woolley said.

The officers asked Dylan for identification. The singer of such classics as "Like a Rolling Stone" and "Blowin' in the Wind" said that he didn't have any ID with him, that he was just walking around looking at houses to pass some time before that night's show.

The officers asked Dylan, 68, to accompany them back to the Ocean Place Resort and Spa, where the performers were staying. Once there, tour staff vouched for Dylan.

A novice policewoman picked up an "eccentric old man acting suspiciously", completely unaware that it was Bob Dylan.

The officers thanked him for his cooperation.

"He couldn't have been any nicer to them," Woolley added.

Harvard Professor - Henry Louis Gates - Arrested For Being A "Black Man In America"

Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., one of the nation's pre-eminent African-American scholars, was arrested Thursday afternoon at his home by Cambridge police investigating a possible break-in. The incident raised concerns among some Harvard faculty that Gates was a victim of racial profiling.


Police arrived at Gates’s Ware Street home near Harvard Square at 12:44 p.m. to question him. Gates, director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard, had trouble unlocking his door after it became jammed.

He was booked for disorderly conduct after “exhibiting loud and tumultuous behavior,” according to a police report. '

Gates accused the investigating officer of being a racist and told him he had "no idea who he was messing with,'' the report said.

Gates told the officer that he was being targeted because "I'm a black man in America.''

Friends of Gates said he was already in his home when police arrived. He showed his driver’s license and Harvard identification card, but was handcuffed and taken into police custody for several hours last Thursday, they said.

The police report said Gates was arrested after he yelled at the investigating officer repeatedly inside the residence then followed the officer outside, where Gates continued to upbraid him. "It was at that time that I informed Professor Gates that he was under arrest,'' the officer wrote in the report.

To me, this demonstrates the difference between a G-d-fearing man like Bob Dylan, and an egocentric man like Henry Louis Gates.

Dylan is an amazing man to me.

I read another article this morning where they mentioned that he's known for this kind of stuff. He was seen getting on a public bus to go to his concert in Belfast, etc.

An amazing lack of pretense.

You might remember the post I did on him at AB on the song and video of Blood in My Eyes. If I am not mistaken, Dylan's world-weariness is born out of "a long contemplation of God". His wandering around in middle-class neighborhoods, and using public transportation to go to concerts, betrays a sense of wonder amidst the world-weariness.

This is not a man focused on his ego. He is focused on something bigger.

Gates is the opposite.


DavidCyrus said...

Comparison- Both guys were interrogated by police because they were judged as "suspicious-looking."

Contrast- Gates showed his ID when asked, but was arrested after the fact anyway.

Contrast- Dylan fit the exact description of the call to police, whereas Gates wasn't described accurately.

Contrast- The police didnt' make up false information and statements in the aftermath of Dylan's case.

Anonymous said...

Gates showed his ID, while delivering a racist rant-
Bobby showed his ID, and his class...

Pastorius said...

David Cyrus,
You are cute, you know it? I like you. Come over here and I'll give you a little kiss on the cheek.

Pastorius said...

I've just added a bit more to the post. Go read it.

Frank449 said...

David's confused. Let's help him.

Two old men, acting suspiciously (no point is us questioning what is or isn't suspicious - only the residents there at the time have that liberty).

One's a genuine celebrity (I've no love of celebrity; just stating fact). The other THINKS he's a celebrity, but isn't.

Cops recognize neither.

One is calm from start to finish (as far as this report states), never trying to capitalize on his celebrity status. All works out in the end.

The other is an a*shole from start to finish, and actually escalates the situation when his imagined celebrity status neither is recognized by nor influences the police. He - not the cop - ends up a national embarrassment.

Moral: don't be an as*hole to cops and all will go well over 99% of the time. Lip off because you're ego is bruised and you'll be made a fool.

DavidCyrus said...

I see alot of opinions and name-calling in your responses, but very little logic or debate of actual facts.

...and since when have the Conservo Rippups fallen in love with the anti-war, pro-civil-rights Dylan? Do you even have a single Dylan song on your iPod?

Pastorius said...

I have about 10 Dylan albums on my Ipod, David.

Bringing it all back home. (my favorite)
Love and Theft
John Wesley Harding
Time Out of Mind
Shot of Love
Slow Train Coming
Blood on the Tracks

and more, which I can't remember.

I also have many of the vinyls.

I have been a huge Dylan fan since I was 13 years old, when Desire came out.

My first favorite Dylan song was Hurricaine, and then I fell in love with One More Cup of Coffee, which is probably still my favorite Dylan song.

Either that, or It's Alright Ma.

Pastorius said...

By the way, keep asking music questions. You'll find that I listen to music from all over the world. And, you will also find that I know how to play music from all over the world.

What do you know how to do, other than being a gadfly?

Pastorius said...


Good summation.

Pastorius said...


Another thing that might be good for you to know is, since I was a musician FOR A LIVING until I was 30 years old, I know what it's like to be extremely poor. I lived in a shack with holes in the walls where the light streamed through. The shack had been a crackhouse before I moved in. It was in the hood in Pasadena.

I was harrassed by cops constantly, I was asked for multiple forms of ID at my own bank (which I could not provide because I could not get credit cards), so I had to resort to going to check cashing places that took 5-7% of my money off the top.

I know what it's like to be poor, and I know what it's like to be a black man.

John Malkovich once asked me to park his car at a club, because, I guess, I looked like a slob to him.

I could go on and on.

I'm guessing you don't have half the life experience that I do.

You wanna compare dicks, David? Mine is light years long, like Vonnegut talked about in Breakfast of Champions.

You're probably more like his asshole drawing.

Remember that?

nunya said...

David Cyrus, and this isn't the first time I've told you this, but civil rights are a conservative belief. That's why 80% of Republicans voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and 60% of Dems did. That's also why we don't believe in special, protected classes or judging people based on gender/creed/race/whatever, like affirmative-action liberals.

Also, you're on the moon of you think the police changed their story. Do you have any idea how much documentation police have to produce every day? 80% of police work is paper work. Plus, there were cameras. That was some ridiculous nonsense right out of left field. Also, Gates was arrested, rightly, for disorderly conduct.

...and since when have socialist libtards fallen in love with Jews? I've never seen a liberal so much as tolerate a non-Kapo Jew, ceratinly not in the last 5 years. Granted, RFK was was shot before I was born. Do you even have a single Dylan song on your iPod?

Frank449 said...

All opinions in our posts, David? Then you're just a little boy choosing not to read them because they're right. The fact that your 2nd comment incongruously switched to the issue of music shows you are an irrational ass. Anyway, let's take a look at your original post:

"Comparison- Both guys were interrogated by police because they were judged as "suspicious-looking."

Partly true. Dylan was an unrecognized old man walking down a quiet residential street. Probably looked like a wino, but that's Dylan.

Gates was not recognizable as he and another man tried busting into the house. That not suspicious behavior in your neighborhood? Remind me not to move to whatever hellhole you live in.

"Contrast- Gates showed his ID when asked, but was arrested after the fact anyway."

Because he kept yelling at and threatening the cop inside AND OUTSIDE the house, when the cop would have left otherwise, whereupon it became disorderly conduct. Gates was an as*hole and brought it all upon himself, which is exactly what he wanted, apparently.

"Contrast- Dylan fit the exact description of the call to police, whereas Gates wasn't described accurately."

True, but so? The 911 tapes clearly show the woman could not tell who the men were or what color.

"Contrast- The police didnt' make up false information and statements in the aftermath of Dylan's case."

Which false statements would these be, Davie? That the police on scene acted stupidly? Oh wait - that was your dumbas* buddy, PresBO, who said that.

What false statements did the cops make?

Pastorius said...

You are right to criticize David's changing of the subject to music.

However, I will engage him on this subject, even though it is irrelevant to the topic at hand, and here's why:

David is operating under the assumption/prejudice that Conservatives are not "hip". He has the idea that we all wear gray suits and red ties, and we don't know anything about art or culture.

Truth is, I am an artist. I write, I write music, I perform music, and I also do comedy.

Furthermore, to this day I am a registered member of the Democratic Party. In fact, I used to run a telephone room for the Democratic Party.

I didn't leave the Democratic Party. I still retain the same ideals (for the most part) that I did then.

As far as I'm concerned, the Democratic Party left me.

So, back to David;

David, I can out hip you any day of the week. Anything you know about in the world of "hip", I likely not only know about it, but have personally lived it.

I challenge you to a duel.

nunya said...

You would be surprised at how many artists/musicians/etc. are conservative, Pasto. Most of them tend to stay in the closet, though, for a couple of reasons. First, because liberals are often very intolerant and they don't want to get the Reagan treatment. Second, because they know their place, unlike many liberals musicians/artists/etc., and they realize that people enjoy their work because of their work, not because of their political views, which can only serve to alienate people, a` la Annie Lennox or Bono or Kanye West or whatever, unless they engage in something everyone can get behind, like Tom hanks and the WWII heroes or Gary Sinise and the troops (which are both conservative causes, really, but conservative causes are the only one with anything approaching universal appeal).

Pastorius said...


Yes, I agree with you.

And, I duly note that the pussy David Cyrus has not come back to engage in the duel I have proposed.

Pastorius said...

Hmm, it's well past dawn, and still he does not show up.