July 23rd, 2009
03:50 PM ET

Photo Gallery: Black in America pre-show

Program Note: In CNN's Black in America 2, Soledad O'Brien reports on the innovative and unexpected ways people are transforming the black experience by confronting the most difficult issues facing their community. Tune in TONIGHT at 8 p.m..

Suvro Banerji
AC360° Intern

These behind-the-scenes pictures were taken last night at Times Square during the live pre-show of Black in America Part 2. It featured some of the most prominent voices in Black Radio including Prof. Henry Louis Gates, Steve Harvey and D.L. Hughley.

soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Touche'

    My comment is this, if anybody thinks the tables are turned and have been made level, because we have a black leader for this country,or we are now able to be mistreated while walking thru the front door now, or even to beleave that just because the chains of slavery are off, even though we wear a unlocked shackle. Well you are an embarrassment to what ever color of people you come from.
    Being from african decent myself, never been in any find of trouble, a goody two shoes, I have been pulled over for everything under the sun. 1 time, a police car was going in the other direction, did a uturn, came up behind me, when asked what did I do Sir, he replied, "you fit a apb just sent out and I noticed you looking at me. Well when did it become a law against looking in someone's general direction, especially when I don't and have never had a criminal backround, and still don't to this day, the concern of getting into trouble never crossed my mind. But I am pulled over at least 2-3 times a week. If not, they ride right behind you until the end of the community they are from ends. Yes, there have been officers who have done nothing and sent me on my way, and have been very helpful to me if I were lost, but accross the board, it's not been the best time to be dwb (Driving While Black) in the this, the midwest of america. As for Michael Jackson, never seen a more concerned man for the safety of other peoples children as him, what a normal millionare to have worked around for the month that I did. R.I.P M.J How many charity's did he sponser, Hmmmm. People, there are more things to be concerned about in this day and age!

    Just trying to get in where I fit in, and not able to do so!

    July 24, 2009 at 2:16 am |
  2. Doug - Huntsville, Al

    Soledad is sooo pretty. Thanks for the behind the scenes thing.

    July 23, 2009 at 10:48 pm |
  3. Josiah

    Nice comment Carol!

    July 23, 2009 at 10:36 pm |
  4. lampe

    Do you all actually believe for one minute, that if Gates was White, that the police officier would have just left and not questioned him anymore? If you do you all are living in a dreamworld. This police Officier didn't know, if Gates was a robber, a unhappy husband who wanted to hurt his wife, or anything else. Would Gates, had yelled and screamed at a Black Officier doing the same job?

    July 23, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  5. Jean

    It is so very sad that in 2009 that can't come together as a country and resolve our race issues, but we can send our children to a fight a war that is to bring peace to thier land.....

    July 23, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  6. Ruby Coria LA., CA.

    It was good to see the young people involed in making a differance, the Latino's can relate to the struggle, the good thing for the Blacks is that, they have leaders young people can look up to. It's also good to go back to the roots, it makes you love your culture more.

    I understand that whites can't relate to what happen to Mr. Gates, that's a good thing they don't have to go through that. The President was so right cop's point out Blacks & Latinos. (they love us..not.)

    July 23, 2009 at 9:55 pm |
  7. Aiseah Achesah (Isiaha)


    July 23, 2009 at 9:48 pm |
  8. Carol Hornbaker

    Power struggle is the issue. Mr. Gates, a prominent man of power. The police officer, a man who has a position of power.
    If we are cornered or in a situation we automatically use all the power we can muster together. It seems inate within us to want to put forth all the power of who we are in the face of insecurity.
    As people regardless of our color, fianancial status, tall, short, thin, fat beautiful, or ugly we need to care more about the other instead of needing always to prove how powerful we are.
    Yes, there is a job to do when a cop is called. Yes, there are times people mis-use their power. It seems in this case both men could have used their power just a little less self serving.
    It is so important to lay aside me and care a little bit more for you.

    July 23, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  9. Isabel • Brazil •

    Nice behind-the-scenes!! Thanks!!!

    Great pictures!!!!

    July 23, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  10. S

    Lets get real here people always say they want racism to end but it will continue to exist because everytime a minority gets in trouble they use the race card! It makes people angry so they hold on to the hate. If we are honest the only people who are TRULY being discriminated against is the WHITES! Blacks are allowed to have their own award shows, TV stations, colleges etc if whites tried that it would cause a major uproar of blacks screaming descrimination & racism. Hell even latinos have their own TV stations so do the gays. Yet if whites tried to say anything about being descriminated against all hell would break lose. Its reverse descrimination!!! Why is this acceptable? This is exactly why there will always be racism because the more minorities are favored whites are repressed. Its only a matter of time before whites start getting really pissed & start demanding to be treated equally! Sooner or later this reverse racism will cause a major blow up, the governments had better get their heads out of their butts and see what is happening around them because the anger is starting to rise among white people.

    July 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  11. Tim Gibson

    Seems the Gates issues prevails here. Yet, if Mr. Gates attended to his professional status as educated and upstanding, had held himself to account for his own actions of being the victim, turning a normal procedure into one of racial profiling to make a valid point, is in itself invald. Just as President Obama's remarks were for his old pal.

    If I blamed my whole life on the failings of my own upbringing I would not have made it to where I am in life myself. White does not mean an easy ride, nor instant success without work on your own behalf.

    It is about pulling yourself out of the cycle you may find yourself in by birth and turning what could be a tragic life into the life of a winner. Not by mercy, but hard work and determination.

    July 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  12. Mary Park

    So Mr Gates was arrested..its not about being black though as many of us truly know. Police arrest EVERYBODY and frankly society is tired of hearing this black/white issue. Why does the media continue to provoke Americans as racists?? In my opinion, the media is "causing" and making issues be black/white. Most americans are NOT racists ...hatred is out there against all types of people....Im finding whites are being abused by this marketing process and whites are harrassed but no one in the media wants to discuss this as white segregation. Mr gates was not doing anything wrong howver the laws may be different in his state....where i am he would not have been arrested unless he did something violent at the moment which gates was said to have done..The police have a habit of being abusive and call it "just doing there job".....

    July 23, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  13. Ann F (IL)

    Black OR white or any other color, he was asked to identify himself. He should happy that the neighbors were watching and that law enforcement responded. What if he had been being held against his will, and they left and he was murdered?

    July 23, 2009 at 5:27 pm |
  14. Michal Meaders from Pensacola Florida

    You are so right Kylie!! But would this officers reactions to the situation have been different if he was a white man in a business suit? Like it or not racism and racial profiling is alive and well in America!!

    July 23, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  15. Kylie

    Your liberty is not cheap and should not be abridged for being jerk.

    It is not about being black or white. The arrest power should not be abused.

    July 23, 2009 at 5:03 pm |
  16. Michal Meaders

    I am sure if Mr. Gates was white and in a business suit nothing but professionalism would have transpired. Not all people areopenly bigotted or racist and some people may not even realize what they are doing and then there are the dangerous ones who do know what they are doing, which is the Harvard cop ?? He wont apologize for his actions so were they based on race or what??? How can he justify habdcuffing this man even after he knew he was the resident of the home in question, I would be made too if some cop tried to arrest me for entering my own home.

    July 23, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  17. Susan

    Obrien you are scrating the surface, but at least you have people talking about being black in america.

    July 23, 2009 at 4:54 pm |
  18. Sabrina In Las Vegas

    OH, I love the behind the scenes stuff.

    I think it is good for those who don't work on a set to see all the stuff that goes into it.

    I wish I could have been there, even on the side.

    Usually I am one of those in the audience as background...keeping the scene stable and focused on those on the stage instead of "can you see me, I'm holding my phone and waving my hand...I'm on TV"....I got stuck with a few of these on one set where we were mock press to stop that.

    The A.D. freaked out and came over to get them out of the shot and thanked me for keeping my focus and not responding/reacting to them.

    When we went to break I laughed so hard at them...it really is funny to see how REAL people react to TV cameras instead of actors.

    July 23, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  19. Paul Adams

    I voted for Obama but i think his comments on the so called STUPID cop was out of line ,just like he stated he did not know the whole situation but he protects his Harvard buddy there where plenty of witneses that stated that his Harvard friend was loud and abusive and playing the RACE Card...this proffesor should be ashamed of himself, the police dept should NOT have dropped the charges,good for the POLICE Officer for STANDING his ground..........

    July 23, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  20. Angelo P.Johnson

    I will be watching tonight to see just we're portrayed. Being a black man in my fifties , I can tell you it's still difficult to say that things are improving when it comes to race relations in America. We've come a long way , but we still face certain struggles in our daily lives.

    July 23, 2009 at 4:10 pm |
  21. Jenefer Ford

    The President was correct in his assessment of the arresting policeman's action against Louis Gates. Mr. Gates is a prominent senior living in a nice community. He had gotten into his home already and surely was not found looking like a hoodlum nor robbing the place. He was probably imbarrassed and shocked to have the police question him. The arresting officer should have picked up on this and handled the matter differently. By all means he should be told to apologize, since he doesn't have the common decency on his own to do so.

    Also, President Obama is bringing more energy and willingness to work for the people to the White House than what any of us have ever seen. Yet many commentators and newspersons are concentrating on negatives that have no bearing on Congressman/ Senators working hard to get the job done. Most of you act as if it's the President's job to write the laws. What are our Congressman/Senators being paid to do? Voice this in your commentary. Ask them if they have had town meetings to explain the proposed plans to the people in their districts. It should be what the people need, not what they want.

    July 23, 2009 at 4:09 pm |