Who’s taking who out of context?

The mainstream media has been saying that Andrew Breitbart took Shirley Sherrod’s words out of context in order to bring her down, or something to that effect. The fact is, Andrew Breitbart did no such thing:

“In the first video, Sherrod describes how she racially discriminates against a white farmer. She describes how she is torn over how much she will choose to help him. And, she admits that she doesn’t do everything she can for him, because he is white. Eventually, her basic humanity informs that this white man is poor and needs help. But she decides that he should get help from “one of his own kind”. She refers him to a white lawyer.
Sherrod’s racist tale is received by the NAACP audience with nodding approval and murmurs of recognition and agreement. Hardly the behavior of the group now holding itself up as the supreme judge of another groups’ racial tolerance.” -Andrew Breitbart (emphasis mine)

You can watch the clip yourself here.

In fact, the “new evidence” that the mainstream media are saying proves Breitbart’s allegations don’t tell the whole story was provided in the same clip posted by Breitbart. Everything Breitbart said is true: pay attention to the audience’s reaction when she tells her little racist story, because at that point in the speech, she had not yet explained that the story was an illustration of how race didn’t matter. Had a Tea Party crowd been presented with a white bureaucrat speaker that proudly told a story about refusing to help a farmer because he was black, the speaker would have been booed off the stage.

Breitbart’s argument holds water, because he was illustrating the undercurrent of racism in the NAACP, which was shown by the audience’s reaction in that clip. He did not call for Sherrod’s termination or resignation. He didn’t even call her a racist. Yet he is being accused of quoting people out of context in order to do them harm, something the mainstream media does every time Rush Limbaugh goes on the air!

If anyone is to blame for Shirley Sherrod’s firing, it’s the mainstream media for jumping on a story before they had a full understanding, something that they do far too often. The difference is that when a mistake is made that harms their side, they are quick to offer full apologies and to point the finger at whatever conservative “caused” the confusion. When a mistake is made that helps their side, they pretend it never happened. This then becomes part of the common narrative, of which the NAACP took full advantage when they accused the Tea Party of racism, by citing those false examples again, which the mainstream media did nothing to disprove.

I listened to all 43+ minutes of the Sherrod speech (which puts me ahead of 90% of the mainstream media), and personally I would fire her solely on the grounds of falsely accusing the Tea Party and Republicans in general of racism, which she does at about 23:20 here. The crowd again murmurs their approval, of course.

The NAACP and the mainstream media are not about civil rights or being objective. They’re about politics, and they need to stop pretending they’re not.


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