The NAACP Was Conned By Andrew Breitbart

Yesterday the NAACP posted a denunciation of USDA official Shirley Sherrod, based on the edited, misleading video cooked up by Andrew Breitbart.

Today this page comes up blank.

But Google’s cache still has it: NAACP STATEMENT ON THE RESIGNATION OF SHIRLEY SHERROD | Press Room | NAACP.

(BALTIMORE, MD) NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous issued the following statement today after learning of the resignation of Shirley Sherrod of the United States Department of Agriculture:

“Since our founding in 1909, the NAACP has been a multi-racial, multi-faith organization that— while generally rooted in African American communities— fights to end racial discrimination against all Americans.

We concur with US Agriculture Secretary Vilsack in accepting the resignation of Shirley Sherrod for her remarks at a local NAACP Freedom Fund banquet.

Racism is about the abuse of power. Sherrod had it in her position at USDA. According to her remarks, she mistreated a white farmer in need of assistance because of his race.

We are appalled by her actions, just as we are with abuses of power against farmers of color and female farmers.

Her actions were shameful. While she went on to explain in the story that she ultimately realized her mistake, as well as the common predicament of working people of all races, she gave no indication she had attempted to right the wrong she had done to this man.

The reaction from many in the audience is disturbing. We will be looking into the behavior of NAACP representatives at this local event and take any appropriate action.

The right thing for the NAACP to do at this point would be to issue a sincere apology to Sherrod. They were played by a con man, and it’s clear that they reacted without the proper balance because they wanted to appear completely fair after the “Tea Party racism” resolution.

The NAACP isn’t the truly guilty party here; the one who lied and smeared an innocent person for purposes of race-baiting was Andrew Breitbart. But this should lead to some soul-searching for the NAACP too, because they overreacted without having all the facts, and ended up helping Breitbart do his dirty work.

The sad thing is that the damage is done, and the truth won’t get anywhere near as much coverage as the lie.

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