Shooting 106 at Poolesville this morning gave me a lot of time to think about Shirley Sherrod.
For those who don't know who she is or what is the issue, here is my attempt to explain:
Shirley Sherrod was the USDA's rural development director for the state of Georgia. A couple of days ago a video was released, championed by conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart and aired initially on Fox News, showing Sherrod, a black woman, stating she found it hard to help white farmers. The NAACP and the Obama administration (through Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture) immediately denounced her comments and she was forced to resign.
Soon after the resignation, video of the entire speech became public. While Sherrod did say she initially found it hard to help the white farmer (in fact, steering him towards an white lawyer), she quickly determined the error of her ways, helped the farmer keep his farm and now she and the farmer are friends. In fact, the farmer in question has come out repudiating any bias against him and his family and called for Sherrod to be reinstated.
Now, everyone involved is scrambling for the lifeboats. Pundits on the left and right are clamoring for Sherrod's reinstatement. The NAACP has apologized for Sherrod. In an embarrassingly tone deaf statement, the Obama administration attempted to lay all blame on on the Dept. of Agriculture (as if it isn't a part of the Obama administration). Even Andrew Breitbart, who is pugnacious by nature (I'm trying to be nice and not call him a asshole) said the video was not released to get Sherrod fired, but to show the NAACP is the real racist organization and not the Tea Party movement, which the NAACP suggested a week ago.
I couldn't care less what Andrew Breitbart does. I care slightly what Fox News does. but they are grown men and women and can run their network as they see fit. My ire is pointed right at the Obama administration and the NAACP. Someone should be fired from both organizations.
The fact that no one in either organization thought to check out the whole tape before running to the closest microphone they could to denounce this woman is as close to dereliction of duty as you can get without leaving your post in Kandahar. The remarks were made an an NAACP function for crying out loud. Here, I'll write your comments for you:
The Federal Government takes raced-based bias seriously. We will fully investigate the charges brought against Mrs. Sherrod and take appropriate action.Please give me the $200K job of the person who should have done the above.
Not only is it a fire-able offense on its face, it speaks to the lack of readiness the two political organizations have against political opponents. If someone had done a bit of research before rebuking an innocent woman, we would be talking about how irresponsible Breitbart and Fox News are. Instead, we are talking about how reactionary and cowardly the Obama administration is.
Someone messed up bad here, costing a low level civil servant her job. Whomever that someone was shouldn't get another chance to mess up. And those around that someone need to know that screw-ups on such a grand scale have consequences. This is the big leagues. Start acting like it.