NBA Los Angeles Clippers owner’s remarks show lack of progress

Sports Editor

It has been difficult to tune into ESPN or other sports networks to not find a headline or mention about NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling’s leaked recording of his making racist comments.

In his argument with his then-girlfriend, V. Stiviano, Sterling was upset that he received a phone call stating a picture of Stiviano and NBA legend Magic Johnson was posted on her Instagram account. 

In the audio released by TMZ Sports, Sterling told his girlfriend he didn’t mind if she loved black people, but he wanted her to keep it private. He also told her to not bring them (black people) back to his games.

As the consequences for his remarks, NBA commissioner Adam Silver ordered Sterling be banned from the NBA for life and mandated he pay a $2.5 million fine. There is also talk about forcing Sterling to sell the Clippers.

As part of silent protests, teams, including the Miami Heat and Clippers, gathered in center court prior to tip-off and threw their warm-up shirts to the ground. Warm-up shirts with solid colors were worn to replace the teams’ logos.

With all of the hype and talk about Sterling’s controversial remarks, there is one solid undertone that surrounds it all: some people, such as Sterling, have not progressed into what America has become since the end of segregation.

It is sad, but true, that some people have not changed their mindsets regardless of how they were raised, and that is not only limited to Sterling. NBA legend Larry Johnson tweeted on Saturday that in the wake of this controversy, it is time for blacks to create their own league.

This is the exact opposite of what needs to happen. Does this mean America should return to segregation and embrace discriminatory ways? No.

With these actions taken by Sterling, this is a time the industry and people of the world should grab one another’s hands and stand up for what America is really about. Show those with the unchanged mindset that times have shifted, and all men, women and children are created equal.

One thing I applaud the players of the Clippers and others from the organization is that there has not been any retaliation resulting in violence. With the silent protests displayed by the Heat and Clippers, it shows they have learned from great leaders of the past, such as civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and baseball legend Jackie Robinson.

Violence is never the answer, and that is not just limited to physical attacks, but also verbal insults. The Clippers have handled themselves well to not respond to racism with racism.  

Bottom line, Sterling allegedly said what he said. There is nothing we can do about that or his mentality toward African Americans. All we can do is continue to move forward and turn the other cheek.