Shirley Sherrod, You’re Fired, You’re Lynched

“Power Concedes nothing without a demand.  It never did and it never will.”  Frederick Douglass

Hello.  You probably don’t know me, but I’m one of those everyday Black Joes who thinks like Shirley Sherrod, but I’m probably known as a troublemaker, like a lot of Black Americans, to those that believe racial discrimination is fine.  You see, most racism is not as overt as what occurred in the case of Sherrod; most racism is initiated by everyday White folks who somehow allowed their conscious or unconscious stereotypes to rear their ugly heads in the workplace and other institutions.  My Cookout Census with relatives from all over the country tells me as much.

What you may not know is that when most Black people have it out with discriminating employers, the police, and other institutions who have committed wrong-dong, there usually is no rallying cry or support from Whites or Blacks like Sherrod experienced.

Most Black people are not as cowardly as White Americans when it comes to discussing race, but they are just as cowardly when it comes to confronting discrimination or doing something about it – choosing to whine and complain to other Black people behind closed doors.  They are afraid of the consequences of complaining to Whites who rarely believe them.

But finally, a new national Black Super Hero, Shirley Sherrod, we can all believe in – White, Black, Brown and Yellow people!  The other super heroes, who have always had their necks on the Racism Frontlines, the Jesse Jacksons and Al Sharptons, the mainstream media has successfully created caricatures out of them.

Mamma Ain’t Scared of No Damn Politician

It has occurred to me that President Obama is the “sheltered” Black kid, dragged back to the “ghetto of racism” by his adopted mamma, Sherrod, to spend time in the summer with his streetwise, tough Black inner-city “cousins,” the Black masses who have it tougher than anyone and will stay on President Obama’s back about taking on Race/Racism.

President Obama has spent too much time out in the suburbs of life in places like Harvard, congress, and now the White House, hob-knobbing and sipping cappuccinos with his mostly White buddies, including his White House staff.  And where has this lifestyle gotten him?  Well, to the presidency, I suppose, but he’s getting beat up even more so now by the conservative bullies.  But this time Shirley Sherrod, the nation’s new prospective leader on discussing race, was also hit by one of those conservative bully’s rocks, really meant for President Obama, while she was just walking down America’s streets, minding her own business.

And why’d they go and do that?  They done pissed off the wrong one now.  Despite the fact that Sherrod was sacrificed by Obama’s USDA buddies and thrown under the bus to get pounded by the conservatives, she adopted President Obama and his responsibility to take on Racism and like any good mother who loves her son, she’s trying to help him toughen up to fight the good fight.

Sherrod is ready and firing back every time the O’Reilly’s, Hannity’s, Beck’s, and Breitbart’s try to criticize her or downplay racism.  She’s even thinking of going out and looking for some “legal get back,” so she says, on Andrew Breitbart by filing a defamation lawsuit.

Up Close

Examining the case closer, Sherrod, a Black US Department of Agriculture Rural Development Director for Georgia, was called on her cell phone three times and asked to pull over to text in her resignation by the USDA undersecretary Cheryl Cook, who told her the White House wanted her to resign.  This overreaction was based on a short edited video clip posted on the website of conservative, race hustler Andrew Breitbart on July 19th, 2010.   The video clip was titled “The NAACP Awards Racism,” showing comments from Sherrod, taken out of context, portraying her as having not done as much as she could have to help a White couple, Roger and Eloise Spooner (they have nothing but praise for Sherrod), because of their race.  This was Breitbart’s third edited video misrepresenting minorities, particularly Blacks.   Yet he cannot legitimately “put Whites on the cross” because they believe their White privilege doesn’t win 110 percent of the time.  And “winning,” he told a conservative audience, is what it’s all about, referring to why he does what he does.  Yup, Conservative White folks10, Black folks 0.

After Sherrod finally pulled off to the side of the road, having been harassed by the under secretary, she told her, stating it was the last thing she said, “The fight hadn’t been in me before, but it’s definitely in me now . . . you haven’t heard the last of me.”  She continued, “I knew I would not take this laying down.”  Responding to an interviewer’s question about her considering a defamation lawsuit, Shirley responded, “That’s one person (Breitbart) I’d like to get back at.  He came at me; he didn’t go after the NAACP.”  And sue she must, or Breitbart will continue with his bullying.  Breitbart never apologized and asked why should he apologize?  “I think he’d (Breitbart) like to see us stuck back in the times of slavery…that’s where I think he’d like to see all Black people end up again…that’s why he’s so vicious against a Black president,” Sherrod told Anderson Cooper during an interview.

An apology to Sherrod for her forced resignation came from USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, who had been dealing with racial issues regarding Black farmers (average White farmer’s loan processed in 30 days; Black farmer’s loan was over 90 days), who eventually won a $1.25 billion settlement that the senate just voted to not pay, yet again.  In 1999 Sherrod and other activists sued the Department of Agriculture and eventually won the aforementioned lawsuit.  Unknown to most, however, is that Obama can use a political maneuver to override congress and pay the Black farmers, who have suffered discrimination for decades.  But I believe it will be a cold day in H*# before he does this because he knows that mainstream America just won’t be able to wrap their minds around Black farmers getting so much money, despite their suffering and loses being so much more.  In fact, those Black farmers have a better chance of going through the most racist congressmen who are currently denying them their money.

President Obama finally called Sherrod – at her request through the media – but he didn’t exactly apologize.  Nonetheless, the real problem is that Obama is paranoid about discussing race, and he and his administration fired Sherrod almost immediately without her receiving due process.  The White House was shaking in their boots that her story was going to hit the conservative FOX airways.  A big part of this travesty is that Obama’s decision-making is narrow; he needs more Blacks in his inner circle.   And Sherrod offered, after talking with Obama, that maybe he doesn’t really understand the issue of race/racism enough.

To better understand Sherrod, one must consider her past.  Her husband was one of the founders of SNCC, the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, and her father was murdered by a Klansman, two weeks before the little boy he was praying for (he had five girls younger than Sherrod) was born.  Sherrod has recounted how in1965 she and her sisters were to the principal’s office to tell them that their father, Hosie Miller, 39 years old at the time, had been shot by a Klansman (never prosecuted) after a dispute over cows.  This led her to dedicate her life to Civil Rights, organizing Black farmers in rural Georgia. After her father’s death, the Klan went to her house and burned a cross in the yard, trying to intimidate the Sherrod family, but they called their Black friends who came to their rescue, armed, surrounding and daring the Klan to do something.  And in one interview, Sherrod’s now adult son even remembers bullet holes in the wall over his bunk bed.

But what hurt Sherrod more than anything regarding this debacle was when the NAACP hastily repudiated her because her entire life had been about fighting for Civil Rights.  The NAACP called her actions “shameless” and they threatened to identify and take appropriate action against the Black NAACP members at the event because of their seemingly supportive response to what they charged as Sherrod’s racism.  Wow!  These crazy ass bourgeoisie Negroes went after her harder than any Klan posse, hound dogs in tow, chasing Sherrod down like a runaway slave.  I don’t know about you, but I’d prefer the conservative Klan posse catch me than the Colored People NAACP posse, hell bent on showing White America that they can run down and lynch a Black person faster than anybody so they can get that White Approval pat on the head at the end of the day, and save face because of their previous denouncing of the racial elements of the conservative Tea Party.   It’s no wonder they can’t recruit more Blacks.

Sherrod also shared, responding to a reporter’s question, that she agreed with Attorney General Eric Holder, an African American, who said we are a nation of cowards when it comes to dealing with race.

Race Going Nowhere Fast?

What’s going to happen now is that more and more people are going to have to discuss race because of the controversy and Sherrod might be one of the leaders because she has been repeating the need that our nation, and hopefully with Obama’s lead, will start discussing race, at least for awhile.

But what many may have missed was that Robert Gibbs, Obama’s press secretary, dodged three separate questions about when the administration would be handling the Race Issue.  Joe Biden, the president’s right hand man previously told the New York Observer:  “I mean, you got the first mainstream African American (Obama) who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. . . I mean, that’s a storybook, man.”

Ultimately, Sherrod will become an even greater hero, and probably lead our next big discussion about race, while our supposed leader, “Johnny Obama come lately,” will only reluctantly join in, like he always does.  Even democratic and republican leaders refuse to strongly call elements of the Tea Party racist, despite being shown video footage of Tea Party members carrying around signs portraying Obama as a monkey and more.

What I love most about Sherrod is that she is not backing away from the racism issue and she’s calling it what it is – RACISM, which virtually none of the Black media professionals were doing before Sherrod incident came about.  And most still don’t want to say it.  This has driven me crazy since forever, and I have little respect for most of the Black journalist and hosts I see on TV.  Maybe Sherrod can inspire them to get some “backbone,” too?

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