I want to talk briefly about Shirley Sherrod. Her mistreatment by the press and government has been despicable. That being said, if I had been in a decision making position I’m not sure I would have acted differently. That troubles me.
Most of us are willing to rush to judgement when we see documentary proof of a believable event (and sometimes even a non-believable event like Breitbart’s doctored ACORN video where characters straight out of Super Fly ask how to break the law without getting caught). It’s sad.
Here’s the weakness in the system. When Andrew Breitbart presented the Sherrod video everyone assumed he had vetted it. Breitbart was already a lightning rod for left wing criticism. He wouldn’t dare lie on a controversial matter.
Underestimation! As it turns out he hadn’t vetted the video and as subsequent reporting has shown he’s not above lying¹.
Luckily for all of us Shirley Sherrod wasn’t the person Breitbart said she was. She was the opposite! In the interviews I’ve seen she comes off as level headed, sincere and well spoken. She is a racist’s worst nightmare!
Breitbart picked a fight with someone racists don’t think exists. And, of course, that is the weakness of racism. It’s a philosophy built without benefit of truth.
In the end Breitbat was the one blindsided. Good.
Will this episode start a new dialog about race? Maybe. That part is tough to predict.
Undoubtedly this is the end of Andrew Breitbart as an on-camera interview and source. Thank God for small favors. He’ll still have influence behind the scenes, but that’s just not the same and he knows it.
It is that realization and not guilt over what he did that’s made him look so bitter the past few days.
¹ – Even if you allow Breitbart might not have originally known about the video’s editing he did later say, “the audience was laughing and applauding as she described how she maltreated the white farmer,” which of course is totally untrue.