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Deggans to appear Thursday with Shirley Sherrod at NABJ convention in San Diego



Shirley Sherrod Photo Now that the National Association of Black Journalists has released its own announcement, I can reveal the news: I have been asked to appear with Shirley Sherrod Thursday, joining a panel of journalists at the group's national convention in San Diego to talk about race, misinformation and the media.

Sherrod, who lost her job at the USDA just last week after conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart posted misleading video clips from a speech she gave at an NAACP dinner, has become a symbol for some of the dangers inherent in our sped-up, 24/7 media culture.

Initially made to look as if she was condoning helping white people less than black people in her job, Sherrod was initially criticized by the NAACP and said the White House pressured her to resign within hours of the clips' appearance. After the NAACP discovered and released a full version of the video, even Fox News Channel pundit Bill O'Reilly apologized for his mistake in calling for her resignation (just before insisting that she still sees life through the prism of race).

The NABJ also invited Breitbart to join in the discussion, and he accepted before later declining. Still, the group will present one of the biggest newsmakers of the past week in a special 8 a.m. session which will precede its national convention opening ceremonies.

I will join a panel of journalists to talk over the issues with Mrs. Sherrod, exploring the problems and pitfalls at the nexus of race and media that NABJ was established, in part, to help correct.

If you have any questions you'd like to see me ask Mrs. Sherrod -- pointless Obama-blamers and hysterical critics of any talk about racial issues need not bother to respond -- feel free to place them in the comments section, and I'll see if I can work one or two of them into the discussion.

And, as always, I hope to blog about the whole experience sometime in the middle of the day. So keep an eye out here Thursday for the full scoop.

Click below to read NABJ's press release

Newsmaker Shirley Sherrod to Address Black Journalists at Annual Convention in San Diego

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (JULY 27, 2010)- Newsmaker Shirley Sherrod is set to appear before thousands of journalists on Thursday, July 29 at the National Association of Black Journalists  (NABJ) Annual Convention in San Diego, Calif.

Sherrod has made headlines over the past two weeks for her forced resignation from  the U.S. Department of Agriculture after conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart posted video excerpts of Sherrod's address at a March 2010 NAACP event on  his website. The NAACP initially condemned her remarks and U.S. government officials called on her to resign. Upon review of the unedited video in context, the NAACP, White House officials, and Tom Vilsack, the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, apologized soon after and Sherrod was offered a new position. Sherrod has not yet decided if she will accept the job offer.

Sherrod will have a candid conversation with a panel of journalists during a newsmaker plenary, "Context and Consequences: A Conversation with Shirley Sherrod." The discussion will focus on the reporting and coverage of this incident and the role that race still plays in a runaway media culture.

NABJ also extended Breitbart an invitation to this session. He initially accepted, but later declined.

EVENT:                     Context and Consequences: A Conversation with Shirley Sherrod and the National Association of Black Journalists

TIME:                          8:00 a.m. PST July 29- Newsmaker Plenary

LOCATION:               Manchester Grand Hyatt, Room TBA


[Last modified: Thursday, August 12, 2010 2:16pm]


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