Tell President Obama to reinstate Shirley Sherrod

Stop the right-wing smear machine

The White House just fired Shirley Sherrod, a Black official from the Department of Agriculture (USDA), after she was smeared by race-baiting right-wing blogger Andrew Breitbart and his friends at Fox News.

It's bad enough that we have to fight the constant smear campaigns and appeals to racial paranoia from FOX and their right-wing media allies. But it's completely shameful and outrageous for the Obama administration to throw their people like Sherrod under the bus because they're afraid to fight back against the lies.

Please join us in calling on the White House to reinstate Shirley Sherrod and to stop caving in to right-wing smears.

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Read the e-mail message that we originally sent to our members about this petition.

Below is the message we'll send to President Obama. You can add your own personal comments in the box to the left.

Dear President Obama,

Secretary Vilsack's decision to fire Shirley Sherrod in response to Andrew Breitbart's fabricated attack on her is unacceptable. That the White House has endorsed that action, given the facts that have come to light, is unconscionable.

It's one thing to rush to judgment. It's another to refuse to correct the error when it becomes clear that you were wrong.

Andrew Breitbart is a right-wing con artist with a reputation for attacks on Black leaders and institutions. We cannot afford an administration that is unable to deal with likes of Breitbart or others who engage in race-based attacks. Every time you fold to right-wing smears, those perpetrating them are given an incentive to continue their lies and fabrications. This is not just a problem for Ms. Sherrod, or for Black America, but for America on the whole.

To enjoy the respect of the American people, it is critical that your administration admits when it makes mistakes and rectifies them. That is what is called for here.

I therefore respectfully demand that Ms. Sherrod be reinstated to her position, and that your administration seek the truth before emboldening the far-right by caving to their baseless smears.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

cc: Secretary Tom Vilsack