NBA Bans Clippers Owner Donald Sterling for Life Over Racist Comments

3 years ago

Editor's Note: On Tuesday, April 29, the NBA banned Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life and fined him $2.5 million for the racist words believed to be by him on tapes released on the Internet last Saturday. -- Julie

Four Great Posts About Clippers Owner Donald Sterling and Racism

Over the weekend, TMZ released a tape of Los Angeles Clippers owner, Donald Sterling, saying he didn’t want his girlfriend, identified as V. Stiviano, to bring black people to his games. Stiviano is black and Mexican herself, although the recording reveals Sterling believes she can (and should) pass herself off as purely white or Latina.

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Here’s a snippet of the conversation:

DS:"There’s a culture"

GF:"What culture?"

DS:"People feel certain things. Hispanics feel certain things towards Blacks. Blacks feel certain things towards other groups. It’s been that way historically and it will always be that way."

The discussion apparently stemmed from photos posted on Stiviano’s Instagram account, on which she had posted photos of herself with black people, notably basketball player Magic Johnson and baseball player Matt Kemp.

At Jezebel, Erin Gloria Ryan writes in Your Biracial Girlfriend Won’t Cure Your Horrible Racism:

"…it brings into sharp relief the fallacy of claiming that dating, loving, or befriending a member of another race somehow inoculates a person against racism. "But My Husband/Wife/Best Friend/Top Performing Employee/Hookup Buddy Is Black!" is not an insurance policy against racism. In fact, in cases like Sterling's, surrounding himself with black people has only served to embolden his chainsaw-fucked world view."

Image: ©Jayne Oncea/Cal Sport Media/

Carolyn Edgar writes on Salon, that Sterling’s remarks—like those of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy—are not just an old man’s harmless babbling but what modern racism looks like:

"For his part, Donald Sterling is not only the owner of the Clippers, he is also a real estate mogul who has faced numerous lawsuits alleging that he discriminated against blacks and Hispanics who sought to rent his apartment units. He is not simply a harmless old bigot speaking nonsense in the heat of a lovers’ quarrel with his much-younger mistress. Sterling’s well-documented racism was largely ignored by the NBA and the mainstream media for years."

Blogger Christelyn Karazin writes at Beyond Black & White:

"With all that man’s money, why wouldn’t he just have an Aryan girlfriend? Why try to make a mixed one into his ideal? Geezus, it’s like listening to a slave owner telling  his mistress to pass for white so she can show herself acceptable to polite society. This man seriously needs to be dumped in wax and displayed at a museum."

And the always-incisive Jay Smooth has three things to say about the taped comments (don't miss the last one, below):

Should the NBA take action against Donald Sterling? What about the players or fans? Let's talk about it in the comments...

News and Politics Editor Grace Hwang Lynch blogs about raising an Asian mixed-race family at HapaMama.

This is an article written by a member of the SheKnows Community. The SheKnows editorial team has not edited, vetted or endorsed the content of this post. Want to join our amazing community and share your own story? Sign up here.

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