- Cheryl Cook (Deputy Undersecretary of Agriculture) -- Since Cheryl Cook was so desperate for Shirley Sherrod's resignation that she insisted that Sherrod pull to the side of the road and text if from her Blackberry, I think she should set the example. She's a disgrace to her office, to the department, and to her country, so she should be willing to be the first to throw herself on her Blackberry sword and get the hell out of the department, before someone picks up on the fact that she's still working there.
- Tom Vilsack (Secretary of Agriculture) -- Oh, sure... he apologized. But let's face it. This was the kind of bell you just can't unring. Once the accusation of racism has been leveled, and then fortified by the victim's own employers and party, the taint is never fully cleansed by an apology. Tom Vilsack behaved abhorrently in this entire affair, and he needs to admit that, quit and let someone step into the job who has brain AND a heart.
- Ben Jealous (CEO of NAACP) -- Of all the tragically shameful characters in this fiasco, Jealous is the worst. When Ms. Sherrod's comments were recorded, she was speaking at an NAACP event. Does he now want us to believe he had no access to a transcript or complete tape of the event, against which to verify the accusations? Ridiculous! Furthermore, Shirley Sherrod is the wife of Charles Sherrod, who co-founded and organized the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, which played a key role in the American Civil Rights Movement in the 60's. The SNCC members risked their very lives by going into rural communities in Georgia and Mississippi in order to register voters and encourage participation in the Movement, at a time when people were being killed for doing that! The mention of Shirley Sherrod's last name should have been a tip-off to the NAACP in general. Charles and Shirley Sherrod have dedicated their lives to the abolition of bigotry and prejudice. Jealous should have known that this story wasn't all that it seemed. Certainly, a single phone call to the white farmer in question would have put an end to all speculation, since he and his wife have been on network news all week, referring to Sherrod as a "lifelong friend" who "saved us from bankruptcy." But no such call was ever placed -- not by Jealous, nor by anyone else at the NAACP. Pull over, Mr. Jealous, we'll be needing your resignation immediately.
- Jim Messina (Deputy White House Chief of Staff) -- In a staff meeting the morning after Sherrod's firing (less than 24 hours after the story had broken), Messina was quoted at a staff meeting of saying: "We could have waited all day — we could have had a media circus — but we took decisive action, and it’s a good example of how to respond in this atmosphere." Ironically, if Messina had waited all day, he'd have probably figured out that the story he was being told wasn't the true story at all. Messina, of course, reports directly to my least favorite person certainly in the White House, and possibly in the entire world, Rahm Emanual. If Messina had a hand in any of this, then it was certainly NOT without Emanuel's complete knowledge and blessing. Which brings us to Number...
- Rahm Emanual (White House Chief of Staff) -- The biggest mistake Barack Obama ever made was in recruiting this guy as his Chief of Staff. Classless, heartless, soulless, with a sinister, self-promoting agenda that has little to do with a desire to serve his country, Emanuel has always done what is best for one person and one person only -- Rahm Emanuel. When Cheryl Cook called Shirley Sherrod on her now-infamous drive home, Cook specifically told Sherrod that the White House wanted Sherrod's resignation immediately, and couldn't wait for Sherrod to return to her office. Later, Vilsack back-pedaled on that statement and took complete responsibility for Sherrod's dismissal. As reprehensible as I think Cook's behavior was in all of this, I doubt that even she would have the unmitigated gall to invoke the color of White House authority were she not damn sure the order was actually coming from them. And if it was coming from the White House, it wasn't coming from President Obama. I think if we've learned anything about the President by now, it's that trying to get him to actually act on something -- ANYTHING -- is an exercise in frustration and futility. This entire affair smacks of the impulsive, take-no-prisoners, cut-em-off-at-the-knees style of Rahm Emanuel. He needs to resign just on principle, because he's bad for Obama, he's bad for the country and he's bad for us.
As for Andrew Breitbart, I'm guessing Ms. Sherrod has already gotten several calls from attorneys dying to take on a civil lawsuit. With any luck, this sick, sad little man and his pathetic little righty-bloggy thing be driven forever into the ground.