Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Are we really any different from Clippers’ owner when it comes to race?

I see that the National Basketball Association plans to make an announcement Tuesday to impose some punishment on the owner of the never-won-anything Los Angeles Clippers on account of his recent remarks to a girlfriend about how much he hates it that she associates with black people.

Clippers' unwelcome 'houseguest'?
But I’m not sure I see the point of such punishment for Clippers’ owner Donald Sterling.

THERE ARE TIMES I wonder how many of the people who are piling onto Sterling these days have thought much about how guilty many of us are in feeling the same way that he does about modern-day race relations.

I heard a summary first of what was supposedly caught on tape of a conversation between Sterling and Vanessa Stiviano – one in which he lambasts her for associating with so many black people and makes it clear he does not want her to bring any of them around him.

When I heard the actual recording, I have to admit that it sounded much less incendiary.

By that, I mean it sounded much like the thoughts that are felt by many people all across the Chicago area who make sure they live in the “proper” neighborhood or the “right” kind of suburban community.

WHICH USUALLY TRANSLATES to them wanting to be surrounded by individuals just like themselves racially or ethnically. “Diversity” is a sentiment they may give lip service to, but often don’t really want to experience all that much of.

Unless, perhaps, it means eating out at an ethnic (albeit, not too funky) restaurant occasionally. Although some people don’t even want to go that far.

So the fact that Sterling doesn’t want to be around black people? I suppose that’s his right. And our benefit, because we really don’t want to be around him, either.

What does Doc think of his boss?
There are times that I think people like Sterling suffer the ultimate punishment, and it’s completely self-inflicted. They surround themselves with like-minded people, and they all wind up being miserable together.

ALTHOUGH I PERSONALLY think the real victim in all this are any black people who, by circumstance, are in situations where they have to be around him. Why be around a grouchy, miserable ol’ cuss like himself?

Let the rest of us experience our joy in life by not having to deal with people of the sentiment of Sterling!

I really don’t think that anything the NBA could say or do would have any real effect on the way he thinks – even if they went the route that Major League Baseball did a couple of decades ago when then-Cincinnati Reds owner Marge Schott (another ol’ cuss, even if of the opposite gender) let it be known that maybe there were a few redeemable qualities to Adolf Hitler.

She wound up being pressured to sell the ball club to less-outspoken interests. Just as some are saying that perhaps Los Angeles Dodgers owner Earvin “Magic” Johnson (also the one-time Lakers player) should buy out Sterling’s share of the Clippers.

IT MIGHT HAVE some sense of irony, in that it was Stiviano’s admitted admiration of Johnson that caused Sterling to go into rant-mode.

But somehow, I suspect it will just make Sterling (and his admirers, who are now keeping a low profile publicly) think they’re the “victims.” I can already hear their cries of “political correctness” running amok.

Personally, I think the worst thing that could happen to Sterling is if Stiviano and his wife, Rochelle, were to pair up against him. Currently, the wife has a lawsuit pending against the girlfriend because of all the gifts her husband has given to Ms. Stiviano.

Most attention Clippers ever received?
That’s the lawsuit in which Rochelle’s attorneys wrote that Stiviano, “engages in conduct designed to target, befriend, seduce and then … receives as gifts transfers of wealth from older men whom she targets for such purposes.”


Just think of the damage they could do to him if they worked together? I don’t think the NBA could come close to matching that kind of venom!


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