Monday, May 5, 2014

A Sterling Reputation

What do you think of the recent taped comments from Donald Sterling, the owner of the NBA Los Angeles Clippers that portray his personal dislike for his mistress associating in public with black people? What do you think of the NBA's response to these admittedly "hateful" and non-politically correct private comments that were taped without Mr. Sterling's consent or knowledge that became public and the announced fine of 2.5 million dollars, a lifetime ban from attending Clippers games and being involved with the team he owns and the pressure exerted by current commissioner Adam Silver for Sterling to sell the Clippers? Hmmmm?

While Mr. Sterling's comments are not to be condoned or approved of do you think that maybe as Dallas Maverick's owner Mark Cuban expressed recently that this may be the start of a "slippery slope" of "political correctness" that to me may escalate if continued in further examples of opinion management and restraint of people expressing their rights to free speech (especially private free speech not intended for public consumption?) The public airing of these private conversations has made many NBA and Clipper sponsors reconsider their involvement with professional basketball. Pro basketball franchises are a rare and valuable commodity and I wonder if the mistress was somehow enticed by people interested in acquiring an NBA team to steering these taped conversations in order to "pound Sterling" and put pressure on him to force the sale of the Clippers.

I wonder what the future will hold if all  "politically incorrect" speech and behavior were dealt with to the extent of the punishment and sanctions proposed for Mr. Sterling. There are plenty of examples of black leaders such as President Obama's Minister Rev Jeremiah Wright who said that America had "(9-11) it coming due to its support of terrorism against Palestinians and Black South Africa. "God Damn America".
Louis Farrakhan, of the Nation of Islam said "The Jews don't like Farrakhan, so they call me Hitler. Well,  that's a good name. Hitler was a very great man."Mr. Farrakhan is of the opinion that the Hurricane Katrina levees were bombed so that the New Orleans area where black people live was flooded while the areas of the city where predominantly white people live was not flooded.

There are countless examples of professional athletes that have lived a less than "sterling life". The Bible says " Judge not lest he be judged". And, unless we as a society wish to be ruled under a strict moral code such as the "Taliban" and have every one's private thoughts and conversations constantly monitored and judged then I think we need to be careful as to how we react to people's expression of their private not for public opinions. We need to tolerate and defend the right of all people to express their opinions; even when we don't happen to agree with them. We should all try to develop a "sterling reputation" just not in this case a "Donald Sterling reputation".