by BAR editor and columnist Jared A. Ball, Ph.D.
Even the NAACP's language oozes weakness. "No longer are we even 'hoodwinked,' or 'bamboozled.' No, just 'snookered.' "I suppose its the difference between being outwitted and being without wit at all."
"Snookered" by Liberalism
"The NAACP makes deals with super predator Wells Fargo, accepts Obama's absence of a Black Agenda and then is "snookered" by an already-exposed media fraud into condemning Sherrod."
When discussing the case of Shirley Sherrod we cannot forget that the true culprit is an endemic political liberalism. It is not the Right or the conservatives at Fox News. It is not the Tea Party or its media punditry and it is certainly not some right-wing operative who keeps doctoring videos. It is a soft reformist liberal politics that is to blame. Sherrod is yet another in a procession of reasons to be disgusted by the absolute weakness of President Obama, the Democratic Party, civil rights leaders and of liberalism itself. This is what was ultimately behind yet another Black woman being publicly scorned, forcibly removed from rightful position and blamed for all that is wrong in the world. It is a liberalism that has long frustrated true progressives.
It is why Malcolm warned of the liberal fox and King described the racial solidarity that often resulted in the liberal "walking off" with the aggressor. And it is why Stokely called the white liberal the "weakest" element of their community whose only real purpose was to stem a more revolutionary tide. It is this self-fulfilling liberalism, a loyal opposition liberalism, that produced the conditions in which Sherrod would be condemned. Of course, it is this same liberalism which made Sherrod possible, which made Obama possible and makes the Black liberalism which supports them both; the Black liberalism which is the most vile of white supremacist production.
In the military we were told that "stuff" rolls down hill. This meant that bad orders started at the top, picked up steam, while increasing in size and severity of impact, all culminating in a horrible crash upon those at the bottom. And in a white supremacist, capitalistic and patriarchal society Black women quite naturally are that proverbial bottom upon which all society's ills fall the hardest. Shirley Sherrod was ultimately ordered to the side of the road, told to resign and forced to pay a public and private price because of the "stuff" which formed at the top. It formed in the failure among us to reignite more radical movements which allowed Obama to eventually be seen as progress. It is Obama's condemnation of Reverend Wright; his refusal to attend the World Conference Against Racism; his lack of any meaningful commentary on Sean Bell; his backing down to a white cop and to an institution that routinely brutalizes Black people which ultimately supports the killing of Oscar Grant and now James Rivera, another 15 year old Black child killed this week by police.
"Sherrod is yet another in a procession of reasons to be disgusted by the absolute weakness of President Obama, the Democratic Party, civil rights leaders and of liberalism itself."
From there the "stuff" continues to roll. The NAACP makes deals with super predator Wells Fargo, accepts Obama's absence of a Black Agenda and then is "snookered" by an already-exposed media fraud into condemning Sherrod. Taking their cue from the president, who takes his own from the most liberal economic and politic elite, they offer a trifling apology for what only occurred because of this fundamental liberalism. And isn't the depth of this pitiful liberalism voiced by its own language? What organization can be popular, powerful and Black with leadership that not only can be so easily "snookered," but then says out of its mouth that it has been "snookered!?!" No longer are we even "hoodwinked," or "bamboozled." You know, tricked but strongly tricked. I suppose its the difference between being outwitted and being without wit at all. We can't even be the more 21st century "pimped." That's how soft we've become. Now we are "snookered."
Liberalism is our greatest problem. Not the Right, not the conservative media and not even lunatics on television who seemingly can topple a Black president and the most revered civil rights organization. It is by not pressing a more sustained, public and vigorous response to the ravages of racism in this country that liberalism has allowed for this, yet another demonstration of weakness.
Having mentioned one Revered Wright felled by liberalism let me close with the words of another Reverend Wright who warned of that very dangerous liberal tendency almost 200 years ago. In 1837 Reverend Theodore Wright made a challenge to the liberal Abolitionists of his day saying, "I fear not all the machination, calumny and opposition of slaveholders, when contrasted with the annexation of men whose hearts have not been deeply imbued with [the] high and holy principles [of racial equality].... remember this prejudice must be killed or slavery will never be abolished."