The Case of Shirley Sherrod is a sign of how cowered Democrats have become by the rightwing slander machine.
A Tea Party racist, Andrew Breitbart, smeared a good, decent, innocent woman because she had spoken at an NAACP banquet and Breitbart hates the NAACP.
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack displayed the knee-jerk cowardice of a whipped puppy fired Ms. Sherrod purely on the word of a known liar and without any attempt to discover the actual truth. The NAACP also reacted with knee-jerk cowardice when they condemned Ms. Sherrod even though had they been listening at their own event they would have known that Breitbart's tape was shit.
Now that the truth is getting out we are discovering that Ms. Sherrod is the only hero in this story. The NAACP, at least, has apologized. Vilsack, looking like a weasel, is saying he is "reviewing" her dismissal when he should be abjectly apologizing and begging Ms. Sherrod for forgiveness. (If I were Ms. Sherrod I'd tell Vilsack to go fuck himself but I suspect she is too much of a lady to do that.)
As for Brietbart? He stands by the story, blames someone else, and says his character assassination of Sherrod was all the fault of the NAACP for daring to criticize Tea Party racists like himself.
And what about President Obama who was the real target of Brietbart's lie? He is going to end up passing the buck, blaming Vilsack, and looking like a weakling who can be manipulated by his enemies. This administration, top to bottom, has to grow a backbone or it will continue to be whipsawed by Republican demagogues and liars.
Update: It's good to read that Vilsack manned up and apologized, asked Ms. Sherrod for forgiveness, and has offered her a better job in the department. (I was right, Ms. Sherrod is more a lady than I am a gentleman. She accepted the apology while I would have insisted on a face-to-face meeting to spit in his eye.) I hope the "teachable moment" Vilsack spoke of is that the entire Obama Administration realized that everything coming from Breitbart, Beck, Limbaugh, Hannity, and the rest is unadulterated shit and the only attention that should be paid to it is to throw it back in their faces. (I'm speaking to you, Rahm Emanuel, stop being such a fucking pussy.)