Observations from one who can fog a mirror

When attorney Locke Clifford was asked by the N&R to respond to the leaked report outlining former chief David Wray’s behavior towards black officers, Clifford responded with this jewel…

“… Anybody who is paying attention, anybody who can fog a mirror is going to realize that Chief Wray doesn’t come up through the ranks for 25 years, become the first white police chief in 20 years and all of a sudden wake up one day a card-carrying racist. That’s preposterous.”

I would normally agree with the barrister’s opinion… that is, until I read this morning’s shocking revelations that were obtained by N&R reporters Ahearn and Townsend. 

Although all of the obvious racial slights that independent investigators say occured under Wray’s tenure were inexcusable in my book, Clifford might be talented enough to explained them away.  However, the unexplainable kicker for me came in the last item cited in the article…

“…when Wray invited his command staff to his informal weekly dinner each Thursday night at K&W Cafeteria, he never asked his two black assistant chiefs and a black deputy chief to attend, until one of them asked why they were being excluded.  Subsequently, Chief Wray invited them to a K&W meeting but it seems they never attended such a meeting.”

Contrary to Locke’s statement to the contrary, my guess is the reason those black members of Wray’s command staff didn’t attend the whites-only get togethers after finally forcing the issue is because they were paying very close attention to Wray’s deeds and not to his public personae which apparently belied the truth for the past 25 years.

I just went into the bathroom and was able to fog the mirror pretty well, Locke… perhaps Wray is not a “card-carrying racist” as you insist, but I’d sure say he doesn’t like black people very much.

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One Comment

  1. Posted March 13, 2006 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    David, I read your entries yesterday and as usual enjoyed them all! With the exception of this one I am sorry to say. I was ready to comment, but made myself go away and come back today and read it again. You know David you and Joel are the top two among a very few bloggers whom I totally trust to be fair, and respect for your integrity . That’s why this entry and your wholehearted acceptance of what I could only see as a blatantly bias article of an illegally gotten report that seemed only to have one object and that was to destroy a man’s reputation disturbed me. It seemed to me like the reporters had a vendetta against David Wray. And only offered accusations, but no facts to back them up. Surely if the report is to be believed at all it would substantiated any claims of wrong doing, wouldn’t it? (Funny thing is I always until now had a great deal of respect for these reporters too.)

    Now David, please understand I don’t know David Wray and can hardly judge him as a person, but I am not stupid and with a background in psychology I can state emphatically that David Wray is no racist. It would have been impossible for anyone to hide his feelings from friends, colleagues and family for 25 years, or really all of his life having grown up here in Guilford County. It just would not have been possible! What ever else he may be guilty of racism is not one of them.

    And as far as the dinners that is just one person’s word against another. And given that the police officers were upset over the shift work and as Chief Wray refused to listen to their complaints in this area, and also given that there did seem to be some on going concerns about the activity of a Black officer (Hinson) then I can see very well where the two Black officers would refuse to attend and when given the opportunity blame Wray for not begging them to come. He extended an invitation which they refused, so tough. Since I mentioned Lt. Hinson I will say here that to me there seems to be much more “Firm� evidence of hanky panky on his part than any thing we have so far heard about Wray. I have also been a member of two groups where Blacks have made statements of unsavory business dealings they claim he is involved in. These were informal gab sessions about other topics when Hinson’s name came up and the Black members smirked and commented. That is as far as it went since no one else pursued the matter.

    This is rambling and I don’t want to, I am sorry. Maybe you know something I don’t. I just had to tell you that given the high regard in which I hold you this one entry surprised and rather dismayed me. Sincerely, Brenda Bowers
    And David you certainly needn’t display this comment as it really is just my note to you personally.

2 Trackbacks

  1. [...] A few months ago, I stated in a comment that I didn’t believe that former police chief David Wray was a racists.  In short order, Jerry sent me a gentle reminder that I had, in fact, suggested otherwise in previous post directed at Wray’s attorney, Locke Clifford.  The statement Jerry recalled for me was this  “…perhaps Wray is not a “card-carrying racistâ€? …, but I’d sure say he doesn’t like black people very much.”  I thanked him for keeping me straight, then went back in and corrected myself like a good blogger should. -dhoggard 11 comments trackback this article [...]

  2. [...] With all the conflicting commentary and positions in local papers and blogs following the original leak (such as The N&R, The Rhino, Guarino, Hoggard, The Troublemaker and Ed Cone) over the past God knows how many months, there really was no way for any resident of Greensboro (including me) to follow the numerous threads, form an informed opinion on any discrete level and ultimately, trust both city managers and the police department. [...]