This story - a Profile in Cowardice if ever there was one - should make you sick:
Hoo boy. Conservatives apparently aren't going to back down from ever more overt appeals to racial resentment this summer. BigGovernment.com "broke" a story yesterday about a speech given a few months ago by Shirley Sherrod, USDA Georgia Director of Rural Development, at an NAACP Freedom Fund dinner. In it, Sherrod tells a story from 24 years ago about not helping a white farmer as much as she could have because she was "struggling with the fact that so many black people had lost their farm land."
The point of this story, told in a public venue, was that she quickly realized that she had done wrong. "That's when it was revealed to me that it's about poor versus those who have. It's not so much about white...it is about white and black but it's not, you know...it opened my eyes." This could easily be a heartwarming, three-hankie movie on Lifetime, but no matter:
Sherrod told CNN on Tuesday that she was told repeatedly to resign Monday afternoon after the clip surfaced. "They harassed me," she said. "I got three calls from the White House. At one point they asked me to pull over to the side of the road and do it because you are going to be on Glenn Beck tonight."
Sherrod said the calls came from Cheryl Cook, USDA deputy undersecretary for rural development. "The administration was not interested in hearing the truth. They didn't want to hear the truth," she said.
Sherrod said she and the white farmer she referred to in the video, Roger Spooner, became friends. Spooner's wife, Eloise, confirmed to CNN that she and her husband considered Sherrod friends. "She helped us save our farm by getting in there and doing everything she could do," Eloise Spooner said. "They haven't treated her right."
Sherrod said she told the story to make the point that at the time she thought that white farmers had the advantages because of their race but she learned that was not the case. "The point was to get them to understand that we need to look beyond race," Sherrod said.
In a second video, BigGovernment.com says "Ms. Sherrod confirms every Tea Partier's worst nightmare." Although this is ostensibly a reference to a joke she made about no one ever getting fired from a government job, that's not really every tea partier's worst nightmare, is it? On the other hand, a vindictive black government bureaucrat deciding to screw you over because you're white? Yeah, I'd say that qualifies.
This is just appallingly ugly, and the White House's cowardly response is pretty ugly too. This is shaping up to be a long, gruesome summer, boys and girls.
What a coward Barack Obama is.
Nothing makes him run and cry like a little nastiness via Glenn Beck or some other right wing smear merchant.
Not interested in defending a government employee who seems to be innocent of the allegations made by the right wing, the White House instead threatened her to do the expedient thing and resign.
Guess the only people they feel qualified to stand up to are teachers unions and teachers.
I am going to repeat what I said earlier this week:
Not enough bad stuff can happen to the people running this White House.
UPDATE: Monsanto Whore/Obama Agriculture Secretary Tom Ballsack, er, Vilsack, says it doesn't matter if the government employee fired for charges of racism is innocent of those charges. Her ability to do her job has already been impaired by the Breitbart video, so she had to be fired:
When the department heard about the video yesterday afternoon, they immediately put Sherrod on administrative leave, according to the official. Then, officials called Vilsack, who asked if Sherrod was willing to resign. According to the official, Sherrod said yes.
The official said Sherrod had a chance to explain herself. But her explanation -- that her story is "about getting beyond the issue of race" -- had little effect.
"The comments create a situation that make it really hard for her to do her job," said the official, explaining as Vilsack did in an earlier statement that the agency is struggling to overcome a perception of racism. And it doesn't matter that Sherrod apparently ended up helping the white farmer. "The issue is the comments that she made."
Vilsack, speaking to CNN, said he was concerned about future allegations of racism against Sherrod.
"When you're the state rural development director your principle job is to try to develop job growth in the state of Georgia," he said.
"Unfortunately, the statements and the context of the statements created a circumstance where in the future if people were not satisfied with the decisions that the rural development director made, they could attribute the decision to a wide variety of reasons that weren't necessarily related to the job," he said.
The White House says the decision was completely Vilsack's, but they back him up 100%.
Leaving aside the total dickishness of Monsanto Whore Vilsack firing the employee even before investigating the charges, I must ask why the woman who was fired said on CNN she got THREE PHONE CALLS FROM THE WHITE HOUSE TELLING HER TO RESIGN.
So why is the White House lying about this?
Come on, Barack, you applauded the firing of the teachers in RI.
Own up to the firing of Ms. Sherrod too.
The only thing worse than a wanker is a cowardly one who won't own up to it.