Beyond Henry Louis Gates: Many Scholars Find Inspiration in Discrimination

Beyond Henry Louis Gates 1

Alex Brandon, Associated Press

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have a beer with Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. (second from left) and Cambridge, Mass., police sergeant James Crowley (second from right) in the Rose Garden of The White House in Washington.

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Alex Brandon, Associated Press

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have a beer with Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. (second from left) and Cambridge, Mass., police sergeant James Crowley (second from right) in the Rose Garden of The White House in Washington.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. might never see eye to eye with Sgt. James Crowley over his highly publicized arrest last month, but the Harvard University professor has credited the Cambridge police officer for this much: inspiring him as a scholar.

In an interview with The Root, an online publication that he edits, Mr. Gates said he planned to draw upon his arrest as "a teaching experience," and he talked with PBS about producing a documentary about racial profiling.

Mr. Gates,