July 29th, 2010
11:53 AM ET

Sherrod to sue blogger who released video clip

Former Agriculture Department employee Shirley Sherrod said Thursday she will pursue a lawsuit against conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart - the man responsible for posting an edited video clip of Sherrod appearing to say she discriminated against a white farmer looking for assistance.

"I will definitely do it," she said when asked whether she was considering legal action. Sherrod made her remarks during an appearance at the National Association of Black Journalists convention in San Diego.

Breitbart "had to know that he was targeting me," Sherrod said. "At this point, he hasn't apologized. I don't want it at this point, and he'll definitely hear from me."

The controversy surrounding the clip led to a rush to judgment and Sherrod's forced resignation. However, it was later determined that her speech, unedited, focused on how the incident changed her outlook and made her realize people should move beyond race. The incident occurred 24 years ago, before Sherrod began working for the USDA.

She received an official apology from the USDA and a phone call from President Barack Obama once the full text of her remarks came to light.

Sherrod has since been offered another position at the Agriculture Department.

Obama said earlier Thursday that Sherrod "deserves better than what happened last week." Speaking at a National Urban League conference in Washington, Obama called the claim of racism against her "bogus."

"Many are to blame" for the reaction that followed, he said, "including my own administration."

Her whole story, Obama said he told Sherrod, "is exactly the kind of story we need to hear in America (because) we all have our biases."


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Filed under: Civil Rights
soundoff (420 Responses)
  1. Gene

    Teabaggers suck.

    July 29, 2010 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Eric

    Silly wabbits. She hasn't got a case against this guy. What did he do? He posted a portion of a speech she gave on the Internet. CNN posts portions of what people say every day. If every newspaper and blogger could be sued because they published an exerpt of what someone said rather than an entire comment or speech the news and opinion columns just couldn't exist.

    Like someone else said, Ms. Sherrod is riding a wave of public support right now and reasonably so. Lots of people on both sides of the political aisle rushed to judgment. But she's overplaying her hand with this one.

    CAUTION!! The last paragraph was not intended to be a full and comprehensive review of what another poster said; it is just a paraphrasing of an exerpt. Don't sue me!

    July 29, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JC

    Sue him? She ought to be sending that man Christmas cards. Let's see...for being a "reformed" racist and 24 hours of relative discomfort, she is basically set for life. Speaking gigs, book deal, better job, and so much more. And for all you lefitst haters, from the very beginning, he posted the parts of the video that the media has now used to canonize her. Just no one from the NAACP to the regime bothered to look at it until after the fact. I doubt many people these days remember the Rodney king incident, but CNN, ABC, NBC, et. al. for days and days played-on an endless loop-the cops beating the man. What they did not show was the parts of the video just before the beating which showed King being assaulting the officers, which the jury finally saw and based their verdict on. 50+ people died in the riots that followed because of what the so-called unbiased MSM had portrayed. No one in the media got sued over that one, and no one was vindicated like this woman has been. Context IS everything.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • p53

      Conservative teabaggers are so desparate to defend a fellow racist, they don't see that it only makes them look worse. Breitbart is a racist idiot with access to a computer...like you.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Dee


    July 29, 2010 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. WVLady47

    Typical. She makes racist slurs and she will probably get money out of it. Aren't Racist Blacks wonderful? If she had been white and made the same "out of context" remarks about blacks, she would have been crucified! She made the remarks and if she were any kind of an upstanding person, she would take her punishment and go on. Only in America can blacks malign and slander white people and become famous and get rich for doing so!!!!!!!

    July 29, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • LOLBlogs

      WV...West Virginia maybe....LMAO. Are you credible now??? On issues of race West Virginian....LOL

      July 29, 2010 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper Ga

      only in ameirca are people that are so closed minded they would not now or ever accept the truth even if it were a 2"x4" and someone hit them in the forehead with it. You undoubtably are one of the "genius" elite that has not bothered to watch the entire video, but find it easier to repeat what some other misinformed loon has said previuosly. If you watched the entire video you would have understood what she was saying. You didn't watch the entire video.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • p53

      wvlady: You are a real piece of work. The "wv" (west virginia) in your name says it all. You are backwoods, and but-backwards. You have absolutely no logic, or understanding of whats going on around you. Please, please, please, stick to watching tele-tubbies, and leave the bloggasphere to people who have more than one neuron.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Walter

    What a load of garbage, why doesn't she sue her boss for firing her. Oh, yeah, he's a left-winger like herself. Truly pathetic. Any goodwill she had from this debacle is gone.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. LOLBlogs

    It's funny, 350 years of slavery, 50 years of "Civil Rights" and White people are like, "Racism is alive in the Black Community"?? Does anyone see an issue with that?? Don't Black Americans have actual historic grievances against the upper echelon of American society (In the words of Bill O'Reilly, the Male White Power Structure)?? And your grievance against Blacks are, what?? We're not willing to forget 400 years of history. LMAO again....

    July 29, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Art H

    Clearly, she fell victim to a sneaky smear artist and such tactics will continue unless we nip it right in the bud. This individual who tried to ruin this lady, by his smear tactic, should pay for his actions and should be put completely out of business, so that he (or others like him) will no longer indulge in such cheap tactics that will ruin others' lives.

    The USDA certainly jumped the gun by asking her to resign, on the basis of this rogue's posting, but they went back and apologized and made amends. But this rogue smear artist should never get away with his action.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  9. James

    Anyone that takes Fox News programs for anything but a parody needs to wake up and smell the roses. The tooth fairy is more beliveable than Fox News.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Chuck in Jasper Ga

    Wow.. sure are a lot of Attorneys posting today. Ok, I jest, people that think they are. The courts would have a little to say about who or what she can sue for damages, to include Faux News (the Fantasy Channel). I don't hold a lot of stock in what people with little if any intellect. Simply because some people claim Faux did not do this, or Faux did do this, does not mean a hell of a lot. Most of you are expressing an opinion which has little to do with law or facts.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  11. danny gans

    You libs are a joke. "yeah, sue him for all he's worth". I guess it's no secret commun.. errr Democrats don't like to make their own money. And all of you missed the entire point of the video; the racist reactions to racist Shirley Sherrod's racist story by the racist NAACP crowd.

    You're all so blind that I feel sorry for you.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper Ga

      Blind? Hmm. I must be.. I don't see any communist, socialist, Marxist. etc.. it's pretty evident by your posting you do. Better to be blind than a paranoid "chicken little".. "the sky is falling, the sky is falling". "Hey look over in that shadow, there's a socialist hiding there". or a sheep blindly following and bleating the same noise because they have no real reason for opposing something or someone except the wolf told them to. Ignorance is bliss. Sure seem to be a lot blissful conservatives/tea baggers/repukelicans posting today.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • LaffingMyAddOff

      Hard to earn a decent living when people like you own the store.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Pat

    I wonder what she sues Brietbart for doing? What crime did he commit?

    Posting a video? Shortening a video from an hour to a few minutes?

    Watching helplessly while a race-based organization and a fearful administration over-reacted?

    Not being clear enough that the racism in the video was exhibited by the NAACP audience who cheered Sherrod's racist comments – and before *she* told them that this way of thinking was wrong?

    I'd like to watch that trial, because I think every news organization in the world could be charged for doing the same thing.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  13. ACE

    The jake who wrote about liberals and character insults, we may indulge in character insults but the right indulges in character assinations and they need to be held accountable, sue baby sue. I'am surprised the idiot Palin hasn't had anything to say on this subject,she must be busy counting her money that she makes of the backs of the idiots who support her

    July 29, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Samuel Mungo

    Interesting that the Fox supporters began with the idea that Fox never ran the story until after the firing. This was a verbatim quote from the channel by the way. Once that was shown to be false they go with a different tack, blaming liberals for, well, whatever. What about going back to this claim that Fox never ran the story? Does anyone now still claim this?

    Its as if conservative commenters here just run with a list of quotes taken from the channel, without checking or considering facts. This is textbook brainwashing people. Remember Joseph McCarthy? He had a list too...

    July 29, 2010 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Paul Cooper

    Well it was inevitable that Sherrod would try to extend her 15 seconds of infamy by suing someone. Odd though, that she would choose to sue a guy who merely rebroadcast her public statements. He didn't fire her. All he did was expose her for exactly what she said. Sure, it was taken somewhat out of context, but that kind of stuff happens all the time, and it comes with the territory. I doubt this suit will get very far. One against the administration would have a much better chance.

    July 29, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck in Jasper Ga

      I must have missed your posting about what type of law degree you have.

      July 29, 2010 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
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