I don't usually watch TV, but I was stuck in the Sacramento airport on Tuesday so like most of you, I saw this clip of Shirley Sherrod's "racist" comments over and over. The clip was devastating and created a national firestorm and she was quickly fired. I read on the blogs later that the clip had been taken out of context and that she was being offered her job back. Now I've seen the whole clip and I realize how out of context it really was.
If you saw the first clip and haven't seen the full story, I would urge you to start at about 16 minutes into this clip and listen to her tell the full story. The bottom line is that her experience with this farmer was the turning point when she realized that her job wasn't just about helping black people, it was about helping poor people and while she was tempted to do the minimum for this white farmer, she realized that he had no other place to turn and she did everything in her power to ensure that he got the help he deserved. That was her personal turning point, the point at which she realized that the struggle was not black verses white, it was a struggle to help poor people of all races.