She was presumably referring to the people who established slavery at this nation's founding (but don't take my word or even Andy's for what she said; listen to or read her words yourself, because there's not enough space to include her entire speech). She said: "So that's when they made black people servants for life. That's when they put laws in place forbidding them (i.e., blacks and whites) to marry each other. That's when they created the racism that we know of today. They did it to keep us divided. And ... it started working so well they said, 'Gosh, looks like we've come upon something here that could last generations.' And here we are, over 400 years later, and it's still working."
McCarthy goes on to quote Sherrod apparently addressing the motives of some of Obamacare's opponents. She said: "I haven't seen such a mean-spirited people as I've seen lately over this issue of health care. Some of the racism we thought was buried. Didn't it surface? Now, we endured eight years of the Bushes, and we didn't do the stuff these Republicans are doing because you have a black president."
Do we not see the irony in this mad rush to lionize Shirley Sherrod because she was falsely depicted as a racist by someone who took her comments out of context, when that very same Shirley Sherrod seems to be, in effect, unfairly and categorically demonizing people as racists? How about the irony in the castigation of Breitbart for smearing someone as a racist by people who routinely smear an entire group of people (conservatives) as racists?
To be clear, I'm not suggesting two wrongs make a right. But I am saying that we shouldn't allow this incident to distract us from: a) other important issues; b) the troubling statements that Sherrod did make (in context); or c) the ongoing malicious charges of racism constantly leveled against tea partiers, other conservatives and other Obama opponents, even by many of the people exploiting this incident. You've surely read about the JournoList scandal involving discussion by mainstream liberal journalists to deliberately smear conservatives, including Karl Rove and Fred Barnes, with charges of racism?
Racism is an indefensible sin, but false charges of racism are right up there with it -- bearing false witness against people and putting them in the worst possible light.