Shirley Sherrod: My Response to Commentary on Controversy

By Gloria Dulan-Wilson

On Sun, Jul 25, 2010 at 5:33 PM, this message was forwarded to me from one of the BlackList Rise Up Net contributors. He was forwarding to me an email he received on Friday, 7/24/2010 1:16:04 AM Eastern Daylight Savings Time, and his response; to wit:

“In New York City, for example, an average of 20 people for every 100,000 residents in the Upper East Side (a wealthy area where Mayor Bloomberg lives) were arrested for misdemeanor marijuana charges in 2007-2009. In that same period, the arrest rate for the same offense was 3,109 people for every 100,000 residents in Brownsville, Brooklyn, a neighborhood that is 75% African-American.” -jypzzz

“This, dear friends, is the real point. The harsh and swift judgment Mrs Sharrod received (From her own people) is culturally imbedded.   It is what we see every day in our criminal justice system and most prominently in the War on Drugs/Black men!   No white man or women would have been treated so harshly.   "Plausible denial" (the white man's get out of jail free card) is not something that is available to black people!   Not that Mrs. Sharrod had anything to deny, but it wouldn't have mattered. Just a thought to add to a well reasoned essay. mike“ 

Below are my comments on the Shirley Sherrod situation:

DearMcFad3: This is one of those times when I totally agree with you.  A great many of us are prone to rush to judgment when it comes to our own people and a matter of their guilt or innocence.  That is indeed something that we have to deal with - the evil in our own eye when we look at each other. 

I do, however, want to point out, just for the record, that Ms. Sherrod was libeled, slandered.  And in journalism, there are (or were) laws against libel that really should cause Breitbart some serious financial damage.  When he went to all the trouble to take excerpts from Ms. Sherrod's speech, and present it as though it was the sum total of everything she had said, it was libelous and slanderous.  It is the highest (read lowest) form of defamation of character.  It really boils down to an attempt to sully Ms. Sherrod. 

Yes, there may have been a rush to judgment.  However, I daresay, given the presentation in the original format, it would have been difficult to have to come to any other conclusion.  And as duplicitious as the mainstream is when it comes to trying to vilify us, I don't think many of us (including yours truly - who doesn't trust them any further than I can throw them), would have suspected  them of  having the temerity and the gall to present a tape that was so doctored and distorted. 

But that, folks, is what Macchiavelli's "The Prince" called the big lie.  It is a lie so big, and so bold, and so outrageous, that most reasonable, regular people could not imagine someone going to such an extent to do so.  Why would they?  What would they get out of it?  So it must be true? Right?  But we have been victims of the big lie all our lives...you know the ones - we're inferior, Black people are 3/5's human, and so on and so forth.

So when the clip was presented of Ms. Sherrod allegedly making a racist statement, and it's in video, and it's her, it was difficult for someone to say - oh, wait a minute, could this be a doctored tape put together to make us jump down this poor Black woman's throat and show that we don't know how to see through a set up?  We, as usual, are trying to maintain the "golden rule of do unto others."  I.e., if we wanted mainstream to stop discriminating against us, how then could we continue to employ some one at the federal level, who by her own words, appears to be practicing reverse discrimination?  So of course the next logical move was to summarily and dramatically terminate her; making sure the world knows that we, at least, are dealing evenhandedly with wrong doers.

Breitbart must have thought this was a tremendous joke.  President Obama, Ben Jealous, the head of the Department of Agriculture, and a large number of Blacks and whites had all been fooled by his bogus video.  What a lark!!  Of course Ms. Sherrod, who had been doing an excellent job for decades found herself in a maelstrom of controversy.

The positive thing, however, was that when the truth came to light, profuse apologies were offered all around.  The head of the Dept. of Agriculture offered her her position back.  But, as she stated on The View, "I don't know if I want to go back to that department.  I think, given the circumstances, I need to be in another department, maybe even another division of the government."

Now, down to the real nitty-gritty:  What else have we learned from this?  As our Indian relatives have told us for hundreds of years "white man speak with forked tongue."  And in Breitbart's case, this is patently true.  Secondly, no matter how big a stack of Bibles they swear on, we must always do our own due diligence before we accept what they say as true. (So, for those of you who have been following the actions and activities of the "Tea Party" you already know they are bogus, racist, and a throwback to the bad old days).

As a kid in Oklahoma City, it was taught that the more the mainstream media spent vilifying a Black person, the more likely he or she must be doing something right.  I was in the 4th grade at the time.  It is as true now, as it was them.  So when you read hostile headlines about President Obama in the Post, Daily News, New York Times, etc., or Congressman Charlie Rangel, David Paterson, or Kanye West, or whomever, consider the source.  They have yet to prove to me to be the bastion of truth and honesty when it comes to us and our affairs.

The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) which represents 220 Black Newspapers nationwide, are dedicated to keeping Black people informed and abreast of issues that directly affect us.   I strongly suggest you maintain a subscription to at least one of them. And of course, thank goodness for The BlackList, and other websites that are devoted to things Black people need to know.

Soooooooo, what have we learned from this, and what will we teach our people?  There is an element of mean-spirited, negative, evil, low-lifes, who will spend every waking minute in the pursuit of racism, racial hatred, and pitting people against each other.  They are not to be trusted. 

You should be able to smell them from far off.  When you read them, when they come on the news and spout stats; when they are on their talk radio shows and, the ersatz religious and news TV shows, going under the guise of legitimacy, while spouting invectives against you, the President, or anyone else who is trying to make sure we have our fair share; you should now be able to point your finger at them, look at them with a wise and knowing eye of wisdom, and say in a loud voice - YOU ARE A LIAR, back up and back off!!! (in church they would say "the devil's a liar"; or "get thee behind me satan" - it works the same way).

Bottom line then is this: WE WON'T BE FOOLED AGAIN - EVER!

Gloria Dulan-Wilson

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