Fox’s release of a two minute clip of Shirley Sherrod speech at an NAACP meeting was fraud. Fox producers and on air personalities abdicated all responsibility to verify the content and context of Sherrod’s presentation. They knew Breitbart’s reputation for slicing and dicing video clips and quotes to serve his own agenda. But Fox wanted the tapes and accepted the tapes as they were handed over, no questions asked.
That is the real news and central issue of the Shirley Sherrod case. Without Fox enabling, Breitbart would not have had such a large distribution for his lie, the Secretary of Agriculture would not have jumped the gun in firing Sherrod, and the Obama Administration would not have egg on its face over another ‘race’ issue. Fox commentators can no longer hide behind the ‘opinion journalism’ shield they’ve used to ward off critics in the past. They’ve been caught red-handed by the 24-hour news cycle they so proudly try to control. The network’s rank amateurishness in releasing tapes before verifying their newsworthiness would be laughable if Fox hadn’t lent its ‘fair and balanced’ hand to creating the news, rather than reporting it.