You remember James O’Keefe — the guy behind the fake prostitute scam that took down ACORN, the guy who got an anti-racist government official fired by pretending she was a racist, the guy who plotted to trap a female journalist on a boat and videotape himself making crude sexual advances against her.
Well, he’s at it again.
In August of this year O’Keefe sent a handful of operatives to a teacher’s union conference in New Jersey. They were armed with miniature video cameras, and they were looking for dirt — anything they could find, any way they could get it.
One of O’Keefe’s minions struck up a conversation with a teacher named Alissa Ploshnick at the hotel bar. She was 38 and single. He was younger. He engaged her in conversation. He flirted. He bought her drinks.
He taped the whole thing.
At one point, they got talking shop, and she told him a story about how tough it was to get teachers fired:
It’s really hard to fire a tenured teacher. Really hard. It’s really hard. Once you get that three years and a day, it’s like, “schwing!” It’s really hard. Like you seriously have to be in a hallway fucking somebody.
We had this, we had a teacher just recently that was like, “you nigger!” — he’s been moved down — to a student. And the teacher has been demoted, but is still teaching.
When O’Keefe posted this audio on YouTube, it was accompanied by Ploshnick’s name, photo, and title. It carried a voice over claiming that Ploshnick had “brag[ged]” about teachers “not getting fired for calling black kids the N-word,” though she had done no such thing. It carried a summary claiming that in it “NJEA Union Teachers call black students n******,” though again, she’d done no such thing.
Not long later, O’Keefe himself showed up at Ploshnick’s home and asked her — on camera — whether she’d ever “referred to a student as the N-word.”
Again, Ploshnick hadn’t called anybody anything. She hadn’t bragged about anybody getting away with calling anybody anything. She’d merely quoted someone using the word — just as I’ve done in this post — in the course of telling a story in which that quote was absolutely pertinent. For that she was suspended for teaching for nine days and docked a scheduled pay raise amounting to several thousand dollars.
Ploshnick has been a special ed teacher for twenty years. In 1997 she was seriously injured when she threw herself in the path of an oncoming van, saving a group of her students from being run down. (She got a commendatory letter from President Clinton after that incident.)
But ultimately this story isn’t about Ploshnick, who is merely collateral damage. The story is about James O’Keefe.
James O’Keefe, who dressed up as a racist caricature of a pimp to promote videos which he deceptively edited to give the impression that ACORN officials seeking to help a young woman were in fact supporting prostitution.
James O’Keefe, who got a black woman fired from the Obama administration by deceptively editing another video to portray her moving story of her anti-racist values as a racist tirade.
James O’Keefe, who conspired to bring a female CNN reporter onto a boat where he would videotape himself making sexual advances on her, surrounded by dildoes and other sexual aids.
James O’Keefe has a track record. It’s a track record of deploying false charges of racism against anti-racists. And it’s a track record of using deception and sexual harassment to bring women down. He keeps doing it. He keeps doing the same thing over and over again.
And why shouldn’t he? It works.