Back in July I was one of the first conservatives to criticize Andrew Breitbart for releasing the tape of Agriculture Department official Shirley Sherrod making a seemingly racist comment at a NAACP dinner.
I was wrong.
Not only was Shirley Sherrod not innocent in telling a white farmer to seek “his own kind” for help, but she had a $13 million reason for doing so.
While I still feel Breitbart’s release of the now infamous tape was inappropriately framed, there is no question the NAACP audience in that room reveled in the “his own kind” comment. But, like thousands of other Americans, I still had a nagging question in the back of my head: “Why did they fire Sherrod so quickly and without a hearing?”
My concern wasn’t misplaced.
Former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown, of all people, provided part of the answer. “This woman has been a thorn in the side of the Agriculture Department for years. She was part of a class-action lawsuit against the department on behalf of black farmers in the South. For years, she has been operating a community activist organization not unlike ACORN.”
The class-action Brown was referring to has become known as the “Pigford Settlement,” and Shirley Sherrod used her “not unlike ACORN” organization to personally profit from that settlement. Shirley Sherrod and her husband received $13 million and she was hired by the USDA for her end of the settlement.
Pigford v. Glickman is one of those stories that reads dry, but at its core is a leviathan of corruption and race-baiting Democratic Party abuse.
Pigford v. Glickman was a class action lawsuit against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), alleging racial discrimination in its allocation of farm loans and assistance between 1983 and 1997. The lawsuit ended with a settlement in which the U.S. government agreed to pay African American farmers $50,000 each if they had attempted to get USDA help but failed.
In essence Pigford, while originally a legitimate grievance by about 400 black Southern farmers against USDA, has become a reparations Ponzi scheme that will cost taxpayers billions when the Obama orchestrated “resettlement” is paid out. It is rife with fraud, corruption and even murder.
In the end, virtually any black person who ever grew a pansy on their windowsill could file a claim as a farmer. There are no more than 33,000 black farmers in the US; 94,000 have filed claims. And Pigford opened a floodgate of lawsuits by other minorities to settle claimed injustices by the USDA. This week Native Americans who jumped on the bandwagon were awarded $4.55 billion, as well.
This is Pigford II.
Says Breitbart: “It is a classic story of a legitimate grievance by a small group of individuals that has been exploited personal profit and political gain.”
Andrew Breitbart had no knowledge of any of this when he released the Sherrod “His own kind” tape in July, but he had one of the most shocking stories of taxpayer fraud by the horns.
Breitbart’s breaking story, released today, on how this legitimate cause by 400 black farmers was hijacked by scoundrels like Sherrod, is a masterfully crafted exposé of Barack Obama’s blueprint to buy the Southern vote for his upcoming 2012 election bid.
The new GOP Congress should immediately open investigations and should not relent until every single person who participated in this fraud is brought to justice.