The Donald Sterling Aftermath

Posted by Clevis Murray on Sunday, April 27, 2014 with No comments
The late great Michael Jackson once said "It Doesn't Matter If You're Black Or White" and he's right about that but in the year 2014 some people fail to realize that the color do our skin is just a small sample of us, it's the first thing you see and it shouldn't be the last if you get to know the person. Late Friday night TMZ obtained a contentious tape between Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling and his model girlfriend V. Stiviano and as expected the tape was passed around twitter like a note in elementary school and everyone had their own perspective of it.

Sterling, 81, has a history of making racial remarks; in 2006 the U.S. Department of Justice sued Sterling for housing discrimination because he didn't want Koreans, Latinos/Latinas and Blacks in his complexes. He allegedly said Spanish people just "smoke, drink and just hang around the building" and for African-Americans he had said "black tenants smell and attract vermin"... The case was eventually settled for $2.275 million.

Back in 2009 he was sued by then Clippers executive Elgin Baylor for employment discrimination due to the color of his skin and age. Sterling allegedly told Baylor that he wanted the Clippers roster and coaching staff to be assembled with "poor black boys from the south with a white head coach." Now the NFL and NBA have the perfect ensemble of black and white and yes, most teams are predominately black and the staff being Caucasian but that comment in general in that context he used it in is perfectly attributed to hate.

Sterling's mouth has gotten him to do more wrongs than rights but for some odd reason he was awarded the with the NAACP lifetime achievement award in 2009 and after he recent outburst, he was scheduled to receive the award again next month but as expected they have decided to to no longer give him the award.

"NAACP statement: "As the investigation is in progress, we urge the LA Branch of the NAACP to withdraw Donald Sterling from the honoree list."

But back to his remarks, in the video obtained by TMZ he was upset with his very young girlfriend about taking a picture with Hall of Famer Magic Johnson and her boasting about the image on Instagram and he became infuriated with her showing off a black man. Among the comments he said:   

"It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with black people. Do you have to?"

"You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want.  The little I ask you is not to promote it on that ... and not to bring them to my games."

"I’m just saying, in your lousy f******* Instagrams, you don’t have to have yourself with, walking with black people."

"...Don't put him [Magic] on an Instagram for the world to have to see so they have to call me.  And don't bring him to my games."

Find it funny that he doesn't Magic at his game despite both being allegedly friends... Magic would later go on a tirade on twitter:

My problem with Sterling's comments is that he made them and he no remorse for what he was saying. Now I have no problem with him hating people who aren't white because that's his choice and we shouldn't attempt to change his views on multiple communities. But the big issue here is that he made those remarks and owns a team which is made up of his best players being black, one of them mullato and his head coach being black. Sterling has a reputation of being a frugal businessman as he has historically shown skepticism of bringing top tier players to put out a respectable product on the court. It took over 30 years for him to actually get the Clippers out of the shadow of the Lakers and from being the joke of the league to being the headliners.

But despite the ignorant people of the world and people on social media who try to make jokes to get "likes" and "retweets" there are people who took a stand on twitter as it's commonly used for fun and is a place to relax and communicate with other people with he same views as you. But if there is a major topic in the world that becomes bothersome then black, white and spanish twitter unite to showcase their concerns it wasn't better showcased than all-day Saturday.

Magic Johnson, Kevin Hart and other high profile people in the world had much to say about the situation and just like the Trayvon Martin situation back in 2013, many people changed their twitter "avi" to a black picture which was started by center DeAndre Jordan on Instagram. 

Many other public figures shared their thoughts on the Sterling situation from some wanting him to sell the team to him being a disgrace.

"Donald Sterling has mentality of an antebellum slave master," Chris Broussard of ESPN said.

"No one should be allowed to own a team if they have in fact engaged in this kind of racial language," Reverend Al Sharpton said. 

"Donald sterling is the definition of racism," Rapper Meek Mill said.

"time for #Clippers players to step up. Refuse to play till NBA moves against this racist jackass #Sterling. NBA can't defend him," Keith Olbermann of ESPN said via twitter.

The crew of "Inside the NBA" have a reputation of being comical most of the time but with a huge problem with the magnitude of Sterling's hate comments they took time at halftime of the Pacers-Hawks game to address the issue and gave their input.

"Racism is a refuge to ignorance," Kenny Smith said. "Sterling has shown his primitive uneducated thoughts. It a shame the only thing you are rich in is money." 

"If it's true...there's no space in the NBA for Donald Sterling," Ernie Johnson said.

"this is the first big test for Adam Silver," Charles Barkley said. "You can’t have this guy making statements like that. He has to suspend him and fine him immediately…. We can not have an NBA owner discriminating against a league that’s…we’re a black league."

Comedian Kevin Hart chimed in also on his twitter account with a vast amount of tweets with one of them saying, "The owner of the Clippers is a flat out racist and will never see a dime of my money!!! Donald Sterling is disgusting...this sh*t is sad."

NBA players from past and present also wanted their voices heard about the discriminatory remarks by Sterling.

"As a VP for the Hawks it is appalling to wake up to this story," Dominique Wilkins said. "It is in no way anything that I know MY NBA at ANY level to promote, condone or harbor behind closed doors or openly. As a black man living in the South, this is not something that is a surprise. Racism is prevalent, still a problem and something that can not be taken lightly in any context. As a former Clipper, I feel for the community of LA. It is a melting pot of culture and ALL races. For Clipper fans, staff and players, I do hope this is dealt with swiftly and justly. It is just totally disappointing."

"He has a history of being a bigot and racist," Indiana Pacers forward David West said.

"I can only imagine if a player came out and said something of that stature. What would happen to us?," LeBron James said. "I believe in Adam (Silver). I believe in the NBA, and they have to do something and do something very fast."

"There is no room for Donald Sterling in our league," James said. "There's just no room for him."

"I couldn't play for him," Lakers guard Kobe Bryant said via twitter. (Bryant almost signed with the Clippers in '04)

Charles Barkley wants the NBA to suspend Sterling, which they could do making him the first owner to be suspended since Glen Taylor of the Minnesota Timberwolves as he was the last owner to be debarred due to salary cap violations which less his team to forfeiting draft picks and losing $3.5 million.

A suspension towards Sterling could happen but him being kicked out of the NBA won't happen unless it's on his own power:

NBA owners Michael Jordan (Charlotte Bobcats) and Mark Cuban (Dallas Mavericks) gave their input on the debacle. 

"I look at this from two perspectives – as a current owner and a former player," Jordan said." As an owner, I’m obviously disgusted that a fellow team owner could hold such sickening and offensive views. I’m confident that Adam Silver will make a full investigation and take appropriate action quickly. As a former player, I’m completely outraged. There is no room in the NBA - or anywhere else - for the kind of racism and hatred that Mr. Sterling allegedly expressed. I am appalled that this type of ignorance still exists within our country and at the highest levels of our sport. In a league where the majority of players are African-American, we cannot and must not tolerate discrimination at any level."

"The obvious is obvious," Mark Cuban said.

What makes this situation more intriguing is that the Clippers have Chris Paul who is the Nation Basketball Players Association (NBPA) President and Doc Rivers who is on the competition committee. Both men gave their input on the situation. Also it's worth nothing that the Clippers did indeed plan on protesting but Rivers was against it and believed it would be better for fans to boycott rather than the talent.

"On behalf of the National Basketball Players Association," Paul said. "This is a very serious issue which we will address aggressively. We have asked Mayor Kevin Johnson to expand his responsibilities with the NBPA, to determine our response and our next steps. As players, we owe it to our teams and our fans to keep our focus on our game, the playoffs, and the drive to the Finals."

"Were not happy with any of it," Rivers said. "Were going to let the due process happen."

The man who helped keep the Sacramento Kings in Sac-Town and the major of that town, Kevin Johnson released a statement on the matter.

"The reported comments made by Clippers owner Donald Sterling are reprehensible and unacceptable," Johnson said. "The National Basketball Players Association must and will play a very active role in determining how this issue is addressed. There needs to be an immediate investigation and if the reports are true, there needs to be strong and swift action taken. I have spoken with NBPA President Chris Paul and will be leading the NBPA in addressing the implications of this serious matter. I will be formally reaching out to the NBA today to determine our next steps. While I originally came on to lead the Executive Director search, this issue requires immediate attention from the players association. I will be keeping Chris Paul, the Executive Committee, and all player representatives informed of every step."

The president on the United States, Barack Obama released his opinion and on Sterling from Malaysia — as he is a avid NBA fan but Sterling's comments he found very disrespectful like anybody else would.

"When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don't really have to do anything, you just let them talk. That's what happened here," Obama said. "The United States continues to wrestle with the legacy of race and slavery and segregation. That's still there, the vestiges of discrimination. We've made enormous strides, but you're going to continue to see this percolate up every so often."

There are people sadly who took Sterling's remarks and it into a somewhat joke:

Andy Roeser the president of the Los Angeles Clippers released a statement saying: 

Assuming that the recording is authentic and it is Donald Sterling saying those comments, it will be interesting to see how the league deals with it because his history plays a impact on it and there is no way for Sterling to escape as his reputation nationally has been hindered mightily and can't show his face at a NBA arena again or at least for a long time. Wonder how long it'll take? Wonder what disciplinary actions the league takes? Also, Are there other owners or people associated in the NBA who feel this way?

Wonder what he was thinking when he took this picture with former Clipper, Elton Brand:

-- Clevis Murray