The Shirley Sherrod saga has one common thread. Follow the thread as it weaves its way through the news cycles of the week.
I am probably going to regret writing this; yet, I think it needs to be done.
The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day One
Before reading any further you need to be aware of the fact that the word gullible has been written on the ceiling above your head. ↑↑ Now, remember your reaction to the previous sentence.
The story began July 19th when Andrew Breitbart published an online story with this edited video of the now much discussed Shirley Sherrod. The story quickly gathered steam as Ms. Sherrod resigned her USDA position at the request of Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Major news organizations were duped by the misleading video clip. Fox News led the charge and was quickly followed by CBS News, ABC News, and most of the others; some with glee, others with misgivings.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) jumped on board condemning her in a statement, wherein the NAACP President and CEO Ben Jealous calls her actions shameful. It appears that news outlets, as well as the NAACP, has scrubbed their websites of the original NAACP statement.The first 24 hour news cycle has ended; cue day two.
The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Two
News of the full 43 minute video makes the rounds when the NAACP posts the video on YouTube. The NAACP made a Second Statement On The Resignation of Shirley Sherrod wherein they issue an apology for condemning Ms. Sherrod. Further, the organization proclaims, “...we have come to the conclusion we were snookered by Fox News and Tea Party Activist Andrew Breitbart...” The Secretary of Agricultural announces that he will review the resignation of Sherrod.
The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Three
Secretary of Agricultural Vilsack has watched the full video and offers Sherrod an apology and a 'unique' position in the USDA.
The 24-Hour News Cycle: Day Four
Not one to be left out of the limelight, let alone four 24-hour news cycles, President Obama apologizes to Sherrod . Sherrod spent the rest of the day as a reality star on talk shows.
The 72-Hour News Cycle: The Long Weekend
The weekend, which for news cycles seems to begin on Fridays, saw the name game, the blame game and the same game on every news outlet, every news show. Depending on the commentator's personal take on the story one of these three scenario made the circuit. Regardless of the talk show game these were the central players: Sherrod – the non-racist racist, Breitbart – the bamboozled blogger, Jealous – the snookered chief, Vilsack – the turnaround terminator, and Obama – the apologist in chief.
In less than 72 hours Shirley Sherrod went from unknown to overblown, from recently hired to just fired, and finally from just fired to preferred re-hire. The full video of Sherrod's speech makes it very clear that she was not promoting racism, rather she was presenting an account of an incident that changed her own ability to act in a racist way. That is not to say that some of Sherrod's comments are not of concern to conservatives; however, racism should not be one of those concerns.
The Contiguous Thread
There is one point in this sordid story that has failed to make the news. Perhaps it is a non-issue; yet, it seems pertinent as it is the common denominator. Let's review.
Ms. Sherrod, believed to be a member of the NAACP, gave a 43 minute speech at the NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet. The NAACP contracted for the speech to be video recorded by a production company. The video is apparently the property of the NAACP. A clip that was edited by the production company was posted in a story at Biggovernment.com and the “fire” storm began and ended within 48 hours. Throughout this story there is one common denominator, one contiguous thread: the NAACP. It was an NAACP banquet, an NAACP speaker, an NAACP video, an NAACP condemnation, and an NAACP reconciliation.
Finally, we are to believe that the NAACP, including its highest officials, was snookered by an NAACP video.
Quick – the word gullible has been written on the ceiling above your head. ↑↑ Oh, you have met my grandfather – the one who always said, “Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me!”
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