Is Donald Sterling America’s newest super-villain? Well he’s at least the newest face of racism in America. The National Basketball’s Association commissioner Adam Silver handed down the punishment to Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling in the wake of publicized comments he made in regards to African-Americans.
In addition to a lifetime ban from the NBA, Sterling is also being fined $2.5 million and possibly forced to sell the franchise.
Quite a steep penalty to pay, but according to, not only public outcry, but also to the delight of several vocal NBA players, this maximum punishment handed down is just about right. And unfortunately, even though it seems harsh, this super-villain, like all the others, may just have the last laugh.
The tape that was released just a couple of days ago, had Sterling verbally upset over his girlfriend associating with African-Americans. Sterling’s girlfriend, who herself is half-black, took a picture and posted it on Instagram of herself and NBA legend Magic Johnson.
Sterling was heard on the tape saying, “It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with black people. Do you have to?” Sterling continued, “You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask is you is not to promote it on that…and not to bring them to my games.”
The tape also goes into Sterling’s feelings on NBA owners, his feelings on holocaust and other disparaging remarks on various other athlete’s and friends of his girlfriend, who appeared on her Instagram account.
Whatever kind of convoluted relationship Sterling had with his girlfriend, Commissioner Adam Silver made sure that he, nor anyone else involved with the NBA, doesn’t have the same. Sterling is immediately barred from attending any NBA practices or games, including the Clippers playoff run this year. He is also not welcome in any Clippers office or facility, team meeting, business or player personnel decision. Sterling is not allowed in any league business at all.
But the rain on Sterling’s parade pretty much ends there. And the fact is, that’s probably just a little drizzle to him.
The lifetime ban and the $2.5 million fine, while probably warranted, is probably just a show. This is America and you have the right to say whatever you want, but as long as it’s not illegal to be a racist, no one can do anything about it but disagree with you and distance themselves, which is essentially what the NBA is doing. It’s their league, they can ban him and fine him whatever they want. But does that really matter to an old multi-millionaire who’s probably not gonna change and attend many basketball games any more anyway? And Not for nothin’ but Sterling will still come out on top after he’s forced to sale the team, netting him half a billion dollars in the process. That’s not losing.