And thus does another narrative of a racist white cop collapse with the emergence of facts. The other day, our law-enforcement-loving friends at Reason were telling us about the latest outrage: an acbtress from Django Unchained arrested for KWB (Kissing While Black).
For the “why relations between the American people and their law officers can be strained” department, even in the hallowed halls of Tinseltown (adjacent) and involving stars of the silver screen, such as Daniele Watts of Django Unchained and the TV show Partners fame, cops are still officious asses, as reported by Mic.com:
African-American actress Danièle Watts claims she was “handcuffed and detained” by police officers from the Studio City Police Department in Los Angeles on Thursday after allegedly being mistaken for a prostitute.
According to accounts by Watts and her husband Brian James Lucas, two police officers mistook the couple for a prostitute and client when they were seen showing affection in public. Watts refused to show her ID to the cops when questioned and was subsequently handcuffed and placed in the back of their car while police attempted to ascertain her identity. The two officers released Watts shortly afterwards.
Oh, the horrible and despicable racisms!!!
And then . . .
And then audio of the incident emerged.
In the audio, the officer explains that someone called saying there were lewd acts in the car. Watts repeatedly refuses to show her ID and complains about black people being stopped by the cops, to which the cop asks why Watts is playing the race card, as he had not brought up race. Watts tells the cop: “I can make a scene about it . . . I have a publicist.” The cop responds: “I’m mildly interested that you have a publicist, but I’m going to get your ID.” Well played, Mr. Cop.
In the CNN clip above, note how Watts complains that the cop asked her husband for her ID, apparently oblivious to the fact that the cop was politely not interrupting her phone conversation with her dad. The sympathetic CNN interviewer explains that the cop had the right to ask for ID, and keeps politely asking the clueless Watts why she didn’t just give up her ID. (Once Watts’s husband gave up her ID, the incident was over.) Watts also says “It’s my right and my pleasure to enjoy myself” by making out with her husband passionately in the car. TMZ says: “we’ve learned witnesses from the nearby Art Directors Guild office building told cops they were watching her and her BF have full-on sex in the passenger seat WITH THE DOOR OPEN!” (I love your passion, TMZ!)
Here’s how Reason describes the audio in their update:
[UPDATE: To vicariously live through and hear exactly why Watts, and other Americans, get so aggravated with police, it's worth listening to some audio of the incident released by celeb gossip website TMZ, in which a Sgt. Parker tells Watts with maddening supercilious arrogance that "I do have more power than you. Yes it's true. I have more power than you" and "I don't work for you" and "When I tell you to do something you have to do it, ma'am. That's the law....We actually have no charges now" when stressing she was not arrested but merely being detained. TMZ also found eyewitnesses who claim that Watts and her husband were having intercourse in the parked car, though nothing in the audio they released corroborates that as the complaint.]
Well, the cop does say someone called about “lewd acts” in the car, so yeah, actually it does corroborate it.
It’s a tough thing to have your narrative destroyed by facts, huh, Reason guys?
So what was initially portrayed in Reason as another Terrible Incident of Racism turns out to be a race-baiting publicity hound being dealt with by a bored, irritated, and decidedly non-racist cop just trying to do his job.
Whaddya know . . .
UPDATE: Husband, not boyfriend. Thanks to Christopher Smith.