Banned For Life: An Authentic Reaction to Donald Sterling
This was a difficult decision for Adam Silver, Commissioner of the NBA. With only three months in his position, he has this dropped in his lap. He is forced to make a decision that will undoubtedly set a precedent for not only the NBA, but for all of professional sports. It’s a marvelous job, in my opinion. There is no way Donald Sterling, now former (active) owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, could continue being associated with the NBA. Also, it’s almost certain that he will be completely gone for good once the NBA owners vote him out, with only three quarters of votes needed. However, this isn’t something out of the blue. Donald Sterling is a habitual line stepper as it pertains to his racist ways and there is specific evidence which has now become public.
Sterling has harassed his employees racially, specifically former player, Baron Davis. Davis has spoken out about this, stating that he has been called a bastard, the devil, crazy and has been cussed out by Sterling. There are countless other accusations, but the main thing here is that action has been taken: the only action that makes sense. It was clear that no one wanted to be associated with this man. You could see it in Clippers coach Doc Rivers’ eyes and words and in Clippers players when they throw their warm up gear in a pile at center court in Game 4 against the Golden State Warriors. The only option was to ban Sterling for life so that a franchise and its employees could begin to move on and think forward in their duties.
Removal From Ownership
There’s a strong sense from Adam Silver that the owners will vote for the removal of Donald Sterling as owner of the Los Angeles Clippers. Silver took it as far as he could in regards to the NBA Constitution-fining Sterling the maximum $2.5 million and putting his fate in the hands of his peers. It’s a momentous occasion for the NBA and sports in general. The words spoken by Sterling in that recording were atrocious and disgusting. It’s even worse that this isn’t a new belief and it has been exerted on his employees for decades with no effective consequences until now.
As Mark Cuban (owner of the Dallas Mavericks) stated, this is a slippery slope that could open up a world of other ethical dilemmas, especially because this was said by Sterling in the privacy of his own home. Sadly, I think there will always be racism in this world and I don’t think this is going to be something easily put aside. This is a critical moment, not only in sports, but also within our culture. This is something that is no longer tolerated even if we all know it’s still prevalent and will continue to be in the future.
Banned For Life
The only way this could end for Donald Sterling is for him to be banned, stripped of his ownership (presumably), and be forever disassociated with the NBA brand. It’s unfortunate that it has come to this, but it’s a landmark ruling that will go down as one of Adam Silver’s biggest decisions of his career despite only being commissioner for three months. This is monumental in terms of both sports creating change in our culture and pushing the movement of civil rights in the right direction. There needed to be maximum punishment and hopefully a change in ownership. It is an emphatic statement. Adam Silver, I thank you.