LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been slapped with a $2.5 million fine and has been banned from NBA games for life following the weekend release of audio recordings in which he makes disgustingly racist remarks to his mistress. The billionaire octogenarian was heard telling his mistress to remove all black people from her instagram, including pictures of herself with famous sports stars like Magic Johnson, and stating that he supports African Americans on his team by giving “them food, and clothes, and cars, and houses.”
The new NBA commissioner David Silver imposed the fine and ban on Sterling, which is said to be the harshest penalty available, and gave a press conference in which he made the announcement. Over a handful of team sponsors, like Red Bull, Virgin America and Carmax, have already withdrawn their support of the team. Silver said:
“Sentiments of this kind are contrary to the principles of inclusion and respect that form the foundation of our diverse, multicultural, and multiethnic league. I am personally distraught that the views expressed by Mr. Sterling came from within an institution that historically has taken such a leadership role in matters of race relations.” [via Boston Globe]
Now the Board of Governors of the NBA, made up of 23 team owners, has to vote on whether to force Sterling to sell the Clippers. It is widely expected that they will do so, despite some opposition. Mavericks owner Mark Cuban (I know him from Shark Tank) has said that making Sterling sell the Clippers would be a “slippery slope.” From what I’ve read, the other owners support it though. Personally, I don’t see how anyone but another billionaire sports team owner could have an iota of sympathy for this racist a*hole. This guy has no business owning an NBA team.
Meanwhile the lawyer for the mistress heard on the tape with Sterling, V. Stiviano, has asserted that his client didn’t release the recording, that she taped Sterling with his knowledge, and that she wasn’t his mistress. It’s all pretty laughable. Stiviano’s lawyer said that his client worked as an “archivist” for Sterling and that she “had no association with any rich people before this… it’s nothing like it’s been portrayed.” He also claimed that Stiviano is “a hardworking young woman who supported herself working as a waitress and who volunteered to help crime victims.” She works as a waitress and “archivist” and yet carries a Birkin bag. If they wanted us to believe that she didn’t release the tape they shouldn’t have laid it on so thick. Stiviano is being sued for $1.8 million by Sterling’s estranged wife, who is attempting to recover some of the money her husband spent on her. For “archiving.”
He is scum. He should have no part of the NBA.
Out, out damned racist! As for her, the only thing she “archived” for him was his huge supply of viagra and his “Pelts of Animal Fur” wiglet collection.
why is everyone picking on her like she did something wrong? Just because she probably slept with him? She does not anymore, i guess and no matter how appaled you may be, she did the right thing and busted his ass.
As a die hard nba fan, im really glad they didnt ignore this. I didnt think they would sweep it under the rug, but i couldnt be more happy about the ban. It was a blight on a league that is actually fairly progressive.
I know he has a well documented history of racism in the form of housing discrimination lawsuits. I believe the reason the NBA didnt step in until now is this is the first time he publicly made comments related to the game–telling his mistress not to bring black people to the games, the arrogance that he can show them enough respect simply by buying them off by giving them jobs, houses and cars. He deserved this, so much. I’m glad the players, the coaches and the league admins showed tgey wouldn’t put up with it.
The NBA finally stepped in because they were forced to, not because they wanted to. They are simply covering their butts. If they had cared about him being a racist, they would have done this YEARS ago. If you aren’t motivated by the FEDERAL government going after this guy for discrimination, then clearly you aren’t interested in doing anything about it.
Mark Cuban is right about this being a slippery slope. The issue is not whether or not the guy is a racist that makes it slippery. The issue is that they are using an illegal recording of a private conversation. These were NOT public remarks. That’s a big difference.
I really hope the NBA has other recent evidence they are using to justify this vote because otherwise, it is a slippery slope.
The recording was not illegal for the state of California. Also, Sterling is a public figure which is why these tapers were released to the public.
I am not sure why everyone is trying to be “up in arms” over this private-conversation issue now. I mean private conversations completely helped to derail Mel Gibson’s career four years ago. I find it weird now that ppl are commenting on this. It’s like it’s a clever way of obsfucating the central issue in the Stering case. People REALLY do not like discussing race.
Yes, they had to. It doesn’t mean that is the only reason they did it. What’s the motivation not to? They banned him, they fined him, and that’s no loss to the NBA, and if he is forced to sell, they will definitely have another buyer. I think it was something they overlooked because it was not related to basketball until he made comments about basketball players and games.
Also, I’m not necessarily defending it, but where does an owner’s responsibilities for their life outside the sport end? As far a I know, there is no policy about conduct an owner must show outside the sports world. Its not so black and white to imply the should have done something ages ago. Do what? Ban him from games because he lost a discrimination lawsuit that had nothing to do with his job as an owner?
The NBA sure isn’t perfect, not by a long shot, but I think they got this one right.
I have no idea what is in the NBA Constitution. And I agree he is a racist pig. But I have to go with Mark Cuban that it seems a slippery slope legally to be able to force someone to sell something that belongs to them just because you don’t think they should own it anymore. This is not a defence of Sterling in anyway and it depends completely on what is in the NBA Constitution – i.e. is there some kind of ethics or morality clause for owners (LOL) or is there some clause that says the majority rules and as long as they get enough of the owners to back them, the NBA can do whatever it wants? Interesting question.
I agree. I think the guy is a huge douche and I am glad he will be gone… but I don’t know how this applies legally.
He told his nasty gal-friend some nasty things- about a group of people in which HE is the minority. Not too smart. He’d be gone one way or another. Doesn’t look like he is putting up a fight though.
Men’s empires continue to fall because they dip their peen in someone other than their SO. Arrogance gets you every time.
So, in a just society, does being a hate-filled racist.
But sure, let’s put all of this on the woman. That is the lesson here.
Yeah, I’m tired of that narrative.
Mich. His racism was well known and nothing happened. His mistress allegedly released the tapes because she got burned. That is why he is having huge problems right now. It is not about putting all of this on the women. As I stated before, arrogance did.
Yeah, I think this all started because the wife sued for the money he’d spent on gifts for her. That’s when these tapes surfaced, so it pretty much *is* because of the woman and the fact that she’s being sued for almost $2 million by this guy’s wife. Which, when you think of it, is chump change for a billionaire, especially when Stirling’s had her around for four years. I wonder what happened. The lawsuit was filed in March, and now these tapes are released.
The core issue is still his bigotry.
Do we hear her reprimanding him for his racism on that tape?
Absolutely, Mich! And does it matter whether she reprimands him or not, OPuppy? Actually, I do think I recall reading a transcript where she says something along the lines of “you know I’m black too” or words to that effect.
I don’t think this statement has to be a “blame it on the woman” comment. The bigger point is powerful men being arrogant and thinking with their private parts.
There doesn’t have to be a woman involved. You can be a conservative politician caught soliciting sex from men in a public bathroom.
While bad choices and cheating seem to go hand-in-hand with some powerful men, I don’t think it was the cheating that got him here. If he was saying these things regularly, it was only a matter of time before it was used against him by someone who didn’t like it/him. He’s been sued for racial discrimination as the owner of an apartment building before, and that had nothing to do with a woman. His current position is the result of many bad choices, not a siren.
The sick part of it is, the guy’s gonna make a couple hundred million when they finally force him to sell the team. I hope he chokes on it.
That’s what kills me. That and the fact that 2.5 mil for him is like buying a pack of gum 🙁
I don’t know why, but I think the IRS will be paying a lot of attention to this guy.
@bluehare – here’s hoping !!!
He has to sell the team – no self respecting coach or star player would want to work for him. It’s bad for business and it’s bad for the sport for him to be a part of the NBA.
See, I don’t think he should HAVE to sell – for a lot of reasons. I don’t agree with him, I think he’s disgusting, but I don’t think he should HAVE to sell. I think players and fans should walk away. I think the public should turn their backs. I think other teams should petition to not play them. I think this business venture should bleed money until in the end he should want to sell, but not be able to make a dime because the team would be worthless by then.
While this emotionally sounds like the way to go, practically, the only people that would hurt would be everyone but Sterling, to whom this would be a drop in the bucket.
It would end up hurting the players, everyone who works directly with the team, all of the vendors who depend on the franchise for their livelihood and the NBA directly. That’s why they couldn’t simply let this go.
But he’s part of a franchise. This isn’t a singular business, he has responsibilities to the group he joined.
I think he should have to sell for the following reason:
He owns a team which is a part of a larger franchise. Let’s imagine for a second, borrowing from Mitch Hedberg a little here, that he owns a McDonald’s franchise in LA instead. But he decides that he is going to do the same things as he did here (racist/sexist diatribes ad nauseum). McDonald’s, the corporation, would force him out of his LA McDonald’s, the franchise, because his actions reflect poorly upon the corporation and ultimately drive the stocks of the business downward, not to mention other effects of bad PR.
Sterling owns the Clippers, and if his players refuse to play, his coach refuses to coach, and other teams refuse to play against them, the stock of the Clippers takes a dive, but so ultimately, does the NBA. The NBA is taking harsh measures to make sure it is known that they are diametrically opposed to Sterling and to have the support of the majority of fans so that the consequences of Sterling’s views do not blow back onto them. They don’t want the NBA to be affected by the ownership of one terrible owner.
Boogie, the fact that the man is a bigot isn’t news to anyone who knows anything about Donald Sterling. Apparently his racist beliefs are very well documented. All the people who currently work for him have known for years, yet still choose to work for him. It’s only after this latest (most publicized incident) that people are jumping ship.
Okay, let’s look at this objectively. Apart and separate from the NBA, his business practices in housing were problematic and violated civil rights. If they had attempted to push him out at that juncture, how many people would have been wah-wahing (crying ) about how that isn’t fair, and how it had nothing to do with the NBA, the players or how he treated the players or other members of the NBA? Because you know that argument would have been brought up. I’m sure he denied all accusations in prior lawsuits.
Kiddo, I think that is the justification the NBA is using for why they didn’t do anything before. However, if they had really been interested, the lawsuit could have sparked an investigation by the NBA into his business practices and they would probably have easily found evidence that they could have used to kick him out then. But they didn’t want to. I think I read that he actually settled the suits out of court as well.
I’m really curious abut the NAACP who was going to award this guy an achievement award a(and may have done so back in 2009 as well). Is this going to be talked about? I have thought for years the NAACP had lost all credibility. How will they respond to this? Or have they?
@Lucinda, He donated money via free tickets to the games for kids, etc. They decided they weren’t going to honor him. They held a press conference a day or so ago.
I don’t like what the man said one bit, but I’m not really clear on how you could legally force him to sell something he owns because he’s accused of being a racist. I don’t get the legal thinking on that one.
I could easily understand fining him for his ‘improper’ conduct, but I don’t get where the authority exists to say he has to sell the team. Forcing him to do so would be better for the sport, but I’m not clear on how the NBA gets to where they want to go.
He is part of a franchise and thus has to abide by franchisees and conditions. The franchise and its commissioner have the jurisdiction to make these types of decisions.
Mark Cuban says nasty things about different races in private: at least that’s my deduction.
Possibly, or he could be concerned that a private conversation in a person’s own home is no longer sacred. After all BEING racist isn’t actually illegal, it’s only if you act in a discriminatory way in public that the law applies.
OBVIOUSLY Sterling is a raging racist douchebag who deserves all the misery that can befall such a man, but once precedent has been set regarding forcing him to sell his business where do you draw the line? It was only a few decades ago that you could be blackballed from Hollywood for having the “wrong” political beliefs.
Heck, in many countries around the world you still can be executed for “thought crime”…
@Tapioca–Exactly! It’s kind of scary that you could be penalized for an illegal recording of a private conversation that you didn’t know was being recorded. It’s called entrapment.
How is the recording illegal? It’s been said that sterling gave people permission to record him because he has difficulty remembering things.
Also its more than just racist rambling. This guy told her not to appear with blacks and not to bring them to clippers games on top of biased real estate dealings. When a person’s racist sentiment is put into PRACTICE and prevents people from accessing or participating in things based on THE COLOR OF THEIR SKIN…..that’s the textbook classic definition of discrimination.
Racist sentiment is one thing. Putting it into PRACTICE so that people’s lives are effected is quite another.
For the love of Pete. He was not recorded illegally. He gave his permission to be recorded. There is no crime here.
Edited to add: brionne, I agree with you and your voice of reason here. My comments are to the posters who are not understanding the facts. There has been nothing illegal done here with this woman recording a conversation that HE CONSENTED TO.
Agreed @Tapioca. Its not a popular role to play devils advocate but guarding our rights in this country these days is quite a job. Sometimes freedom of speech can suck but I’d say we all want to protect it.
However, seeing its the NBA, they can probably do whatever they want to him for any reason if they vote it that way. Here are the parts of the NBA Constitution that explain what happened:
-The Commissioner shall have the power to suspend for a definite or indefinite period, or to impose a fine not exceeding $1,000,000, or inflict both such suspension and fine upon any person who, in his opinion, shall have been guilty of conduct prejudicial or detrimental to the Association.
-The Commissioner shall, wherever there is a rule for which no penalty is specifically fixed for violation thereof, have the authority to fix such penalty as in the Commissioner’s judgment shall be in the best interests of the Association. Where a situation arises which is not covered in the Constitution and By-Laws, the Commissioner shall have the authority to make such decision, including the imposition of a penalty, as in his judgment shall be in the best interests of the Association. The penalty that may be assessed under the preceding two sentences may include, without limitation, a fine, suspension, and/or the forfeiture or assignment of draft choices. No monetary penalty fixed under this provision shall exceed $2,500,000.
Not saying I disagree but why do think that? Because he doesn’t think Sterling should be forced to sell his team?
I do. I think he doesn’t like the skeletons in the closet being a determination for rights to holding on to the investment. But the point is, Sterling is ruining the NBA brand, so there isn’t anything going on that isn’t all that different from how corporations act in the free market.
Don’t kill me. You ladies know how much I hate Sterling, but I don’t think Cuban’s comments were out-of-place:
“Again, there’s no excuse for his positions. There’s no excuse for what he said. There’s no excuse for anybody to support racism. There’s no place for it in our league, but there’s a very, very, very slippery slope.”
He said forcing Sterling to sell would be un-American:
“But regardless of your background, regardless of the history they have, if we’re taking something somebody said in their home and we’re trying to turn it into something that leads to you being forced to divest property in any way, shape or form, that’s not the United States of America. I don’t want to be part of that.”
Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/mark-cuban-on-donald-sterling-2014-4#ixzz30NNFwVu5
I’m torn on this. Should we be able to take what people say behind closed doors and use that to get them fired?
Part of me says no, that’s not fair in the slightest.
The other part of me thinks that team owners should have a standard to adhere to and the NBA has every right to dismiss people who don’t live up to that standard and don’t represent the league philosophy.
The thing is-I wonder what the Walton Brothers or the Koch Brothers say behind closed doors? Should the Federal Trade Commission be able to take away their business because of what they say in the privacy of their home? Maybe the comparison isn’t accurate in the sense that the FTC is a government-based regulating agency and the NBA is a sport governing body which isn’t tied to the US government and can make it’s own rules as it goes along.
I don’t know..I’m probably alone in this but while I’m not fully on board with Cuban’s comments, I think there’s some good food for thought there. I don’t think he should be crucified for it.
Don’t hurt me please.
@TheOriginalKitten, There are hostile business take-overs all the time, and no one was crying and raging at the machine at Bain when it killed the toy store, right? People have investments taken by force against their will in the free market. This organization is connected. His words damage the brand.
Now if you are arguing that people shouldn’t be surreptitiously recorded, then that’s a separate issue. I wouldn’t want to be recorded just because I believe in privacy. But in the days of the NSA, can anyone really truly believe that they have privacy?
In the end, Sterling was stupid and he allowed someone who he had no respect for, who he was paying , access to his disgusting thought process. That is bad business, even if we remove the racist remarks. He did himself in.
I will add one more thing. I think if this man actually felt even a tingle of remorse about how he felt about race, there should be room for redemption and forgiveness. But I think, at his age, and with his history, it’s highly unlikely.
I’m not going to hurt you OKitt, because I’m pretty torn as well. I get where Cuban is coming from. Sterling is a POS but I dunno.. Why force him to sell his team when he’s is going to make a pretty penny? He bought it at what 12 mil and they’re now worth over half a billion? I thought people didn’t want him to make money off of the team anymore?
@Kiddo I know all about hostile takeovers as my company is going through one now and by tomorrow I’ll be out of a job. And yeah, I’m pretty raged right now.
It’s not his words-it’s how the words were obtained that I take issue with.
The fact that he had a history of bad behavior and went un-reprimanded for years and now gets forced out because of a secret recording is kind of what bugs me.
It seems like there have been ample opportunities to penalize him for his conduct but it took a well-publicized TMZ report which exposed secretly-taped convos that leads to him losing his job? Seems…disingenuous to me. It feels like saving face on the part of the NBA.
Of course people get investments taken from them, but because of something they said in private? Does that happen? I’m asking honestly here.
I guess I would prefer that people get fired because of their public conduct and not what they say in the privacy of their own home. That seems ideal to me.
EDIT: That SUCKS, marie! I wish you were in town and I’d take you out boozing with me 😉
Kitten- I hear what you’re saying with the slippery slope and private conversations. People should be able to say what they want in their own homes, however revolting that might be. But, I think this, in conjunction with his previously documented racial problems was probably the straw that broke the camel’s back. Had he had no other documented occurrences this probably would have been swept under the rug. But since the man has had lawsuits brought against him, people were able to start digging into his past and see that it was a lot worse than just what he was saying in private.
He is a public figurehead in the NBA. I’m sure lots of other people have been fired from their jobs for saying much less. He just got caught. Which is why you shouldn’t say that crap in the first place.
Also, perhaps it was swept under the rug previously because it was (I think) very early 2000’s when this stuff was coming out, sort of before everything in our culture was so immediate. It seems like in the last 5 years or so, everyone knows everything within about 2 minutes. Even 10 years ago we weren’t quite so wired. And most sports owners were not celebrities. Now pretty much everyone is.
If this was an independent company, I would feel totally different, but as it is, he owns a franchise and has responsibilities as franchisee. This isn’t Sterling Inc., this is the NBA team the Clippers.
Also, he is talking about the games and the players here. It has a direct connection to his team and his ability to make money for the NBA.
@TheOriginalKitten, but it was his conduct. If this woman would have come out with these accusations, sans the recording, how many people would have just called her a whore, (like they are doing anyway, but they would have outright dismissed her)? I feel sorry for him in the sense that he is an old fool, maybe suffering dementia in part, but he was using this woman as an object and paying her for time at NBA games, as well. Whether it be for sex or for show, he thought he had all the control. I find it, in a way, a delicious irony. He wanted her to deny her heritage, he wanted her not to have black people in the NBA seen around her.
It probably wasn’t entirely genuine on the NBA’s part, but money talks. It seems to be the only thing some people listen to or hear. The tape was the game changer in the power dynamic .
I get what you’re saying. I think Cuban has a valid point that it *is* a slippery slope to start forcing people to sell off a major investment because of a personal belief.
However, Charles Barkley actually summed this up really well when the story first broke. He said something like: The guy is racist and that’s his thing. We can’t do anything about that. But he is in a position of authority and economic power over the very people he despises, which opens the door for potential troubling abuses. Knowing what we know now, and looking back on the many odd and derided decisions he’s made over the decades as an owner, suddenly it doesn’t look like bad ownership, but decisions made by someone who fundamentally doesn’t value the people who play for him.
He basically said we’re never going to change this guy’s mind and on an individual level, we can ostracize and ridicule him but to an extent we have to tolerate him because he is entitled to his opinions. But institutionally he poses a threat to the values and practices of the NBA, and that we don’t have to take. So oust him, because he isn’t good for the organization. I think Cuban is worried about this setting a precedent for skeletons to be drug out of closets in order to get rid of unpopular owners (and Cuban isn’t very popular), but Barkley makes a good point, that this guy is in a power position and could (and probably has) affect institutionalized racism, which is a major problem.
As for how the recordings came out, I don’t think Stiviano is blameless, but allegedly Sterling asked her to record him because he’s forgetful and she has like, 100 hours of recordings. If that’s true, then he had no expectation of privacy because he endorsed the recording taking place. It’s still shady as everything, but in the end, really, how this came out doesn’t matter. What does matter is that a virulent racist is in a position to determine the economic futures of a predominately black sports team, which, as Barkley pointed out, is concerning.
@blue marie, Sorry hon. Stay strong. On the upside, you’ll have time tomorrow to read drunk/hungover O’Kitt.
Thanks ladies, i’ll definitely be boozing it up tonight.
Thoughtful arguments but the focus is still on what he said and how it impacts the franchise, not on the fact that it was a taped conversation (which is what I take issue with).
I’m hearing a lot of “This taped conversation in particular was ok to use because of what he said” without acknowledging the fact that once you say it’s ok to use this taped conversation, then what’s to say we can’t use other secretly-taped conversations.
Where do we draw the line?
Is it what we deem to be “offensive”, because that’s a wholly subjective concept. I’m just not convinced that this is the best way to go.
Anyway, fair enough and I’ll bow out at this point because I don’t want people to think that I feel sorry for this guy in any, way, shape or form.
Sterling is a racist, misogynistic punk-I think we all agree on that.
@blue marie, I am so sorry to hear about your company’s takeover.
Don’t forget to drink a tall glass of water with alka seltzer before you tie one on and another glass of water before bed. I hope the future brightens for you, and you are in my thoughts.
TOK, I do think you bring up an important point: allowing secretly recorded private conversations to be used against you opens up a lot of privacy issues. These tactics could easily be used on “normal” folks by over zealous employers. We also need to be mindful of the ability to edit and misrepresent actual conversations with recordings.
I do agree with you in a big picture way, but at the same time I don’t see the reality of how it can apply to this situation. As a business, the NBA should be making tons of money from Clippers merchandise and ad space right now, because they are in the playoffs. The money should be rolling in. Instead, the team is losing sponsors left and right. It was very noticable in last night’s game that it seemed the banning of Sterling allowed fans to think it was OK to support the team, as they were symbolically no longer supporting HIM. I also think that business owners and employers hold a bigger responsibility than employees in many ways, and that comes with great reward.
Additionally, I know in states like Iowa the very powerful agriculture business has passed laws that make it illegal to secretly videotape food and agriculture production. These secret videos were the ONLY thing that exposed the mass contamination of over 200 Million eggs that were sent out to consumers. Now, instead of focusing on the criminal activity by the food producer, the law is more targeted on the people that would record that illegal activity to expose the crimes. I am for secret recordings in some cases, sometimes it can be the only thing to expose the truth.
Thank you Sloane, I appreciate it!
@Tiffany-I want to let this go because I don’t want argue too forcefully. I don’t want people to get the impression that I’m arguing against the decision that was made by Silver. The outcome is the right one.
But the latter example you used, the agriculture industry–that’s a work place you’re talking about, not someone’s private home.
There’s an important distinction there. If Sterling had made these comments towards an employee who was sitting in his office who secretly taped the conversation, I wouldn’t have an issue with it.
And I don’t really have an “issue” with it, it just doesn’t sit right with me, you know?
I also wanted to add that I’m allowed to be conflicted right?
I agree with the outcome, I just wish it had come about a different way. Sterling has a history of this kind of bad behavior:
I wish people hadn’t turned a blind eye to it and I wish it hadn’t taken a secretly-recorded conversation to undo him.
TOK, please never worry about arguing too forcefully! You make great points, you don’t make personal attacks. If you are challenging other people’s perspectives with facts, it is very welcome! We can only grow from it, so please don’t hold back! 😀 You are certainly allowed to be conflicted. I am conflicted a bit as well…but to a smaller degree.
I agree about the distinction between comments made at home and at the work place, great point. With this, the line is blurred a little bit because he is talking about his work, his employees, and the customers of his franchise.
I do think that this is such a complicated issue (secret recordings) and where the line is drawn will have such a BIG impact on people in many ways. With the advances in recording technology, this is only going to become a bigger issue.
Ahhh the luxury of being “conflicted” about and feeling sorry for the actions of a vile racist scumbag who finally gets some consequences….
brionne, I think she has been incredibly clear that she isn’t defending his actions, she has concerns over the precedence of people’s private conversations in their homes being used against them. She has repeatedly said that she is in agreement with the outcome.
It is like a trial where a confession becomes inadmissable because it was obtained through illegal means. I think it is a point worthy of consideration. Justice assembled with dirty hands isn’t as satisfying as justice served in a completely upstanding way.
Brionne-Here’s a thought: before commenting about or replying to someone, take the time to read their comments first–it’s a great way to avoid looking stupid.
Never ONCE did I say I felt conflicted about my feelings towards Sterling or what has happened to him.
My argument was solely based on a conflict I had with the private recordings being the reason for this man’s downfall and the idea that private conversations one has within the confines of one’s home can be used against a person.
Furthermore, the NBA had multiple opportunities to take a second look at this man’s historically abhorrent actions-things he said and did publicly (um, telling guests to look at Clippers player in the locker room and their “beautiful black bodies”?) but the guy was finally taken down by private recordings between he and his mistress.
Why do you think that is?
Very simply put, before TMZ broke this widely-publicized news story, the Clippers were making the NBA money. Once the sponsors started dropping out and affecting the franchisor’s profit, they had to take public action. I get it-it’s business, but it’s a bit mendacious, that’s all.
What happened to Sterling was the right thing. I simply think it should have happened sooner and for the BEHAVIOR he displayed, not because of a privately-taped conversation.
Not sure how I have any “luxury” over anyone else? The luxury of having an opinion? We all have that “luxury”-it’s in our Constitution.
PS Thanks, Tiffany! 😉
@OKitt – I understand your point. Not that you think that Sterling’s beliefs are okay, but being a crappy person doesn’t necessarily justify having civil liberties taken away. BUT. An NBA team is a franchise, and as so is subject to whatever the body issuing the franchise has in the contract – it could very well be that there are conduct clauses in the franchise agreement. This isn’t the same as free market business, in that the NBA (the governing body) is the arbiter of who many or may not hold a franchise. For example, the Maloof’s would have rather sold the Sacramento Kings to an ownership group in Seattle, but ultimately the NBA chose the Sacramento group as owners. So I don’t know that I would classify it is as a “slippery slope” in the way that Cuban does, so much as the NBA owners are extremely wealthy men that aren’t used to having to abide by any sort of rules other than their own.
I am not American, so for me it is a slippery slope to comment here…
From the perspective of a foreigner, I have to say that they were waiting for proof about his racism and then they took action.
Freedom of speech or not, this guy owes his millions to a lot of black people and then he spits on them. It feels a bit like a treachery of the worst kind.
Sorry, but what would you do if the president of a rape charity (like Rainn) had an audio tape leaked where he says that raping is ok and sometimes he has fun doing it?
He is in agreement with Silver. He tweeted about it.
I’m not so sure. Cuban is, above all else, a capitalist. To him, the free market should be allowed to take its course. If people truly find Sterling that repellant, stop going to Clippers games. Don’t support the team. When the team becomes unprofittable, Sterling will sell. At least, that’s how he thinks.
I think your logical jump is a bit much. I can understand Cuban’s concern. As of right now, the team is Sterling’s rightful property – he bought it, he owns it fair and square. It does seem awfully odd (and frankly, more than a little off legally) that a person could potentially be deprived of a lawful property right because they said things that other people did not like. As a lawyer, that sets my radar off as well. Sterling is a piece of crap, but his legal rights don’t stop because of that. It sucks because if he insists on holding on to the team, the players will likely suffer the most, but again, the other option makes me (and others) really uneasy.
The difference here is that this is a franchise. A franchisee (Sterling) can have certain duties to the franchisor in their agreement which allows the franchisor to take action if the franchisee does anything to damage the brand. This clearly damages the brand (Larry Johnson made comments calling for an all black league in the wake of these comments), and therefore the NBA likely is within their rights to force him to sell the franchise. Obviously I have no idea what the terms of the franchise agreement are, but I would be shocked if there wasn’t some way to force the sale of a team if the franchisee was damaging the brand so seriously.
I don’t think Serling own’s the value in the team in the true sense of the word – rather, he owns a basketball team that also has a franschise agreement allowing the team to be part of the NBA, which is where the true value lies. Forcing him to sell is better for Sterling than just eliminating the Clippers franchise, since participation in the league is where the value is. If the team isn’t in the NBA, its probably not worth a whole lot.
“The free market should be allowed to take its course.”
Um. Yes. And that’s exactly what’s happening. The free market is standing up and saying you need to get rid of this owner because it will not support this team if he stays on. The players won’t play for him, the coaches won’t coach for him. That’s the free market talking really loudly and really clearly.
Yes, it’s personal, but that again is up to the free market. Why does the market choose or not choose to support a brand? It’s entirely subjective and personal. If I don’t like the owner of the company, I can decide not to support the brand. My choice. I’ve spoken. It doesn’t matter if it’s logical or sensible or defensible in a court of law. It doesn’t have to be.
People who talk as though Sterling’s rights are being trampled on, calling this ouster un-American, are completely severing any understanding of who the market consists of and how those demands are made.
It’s really clear to me. The free market has spoken and said they will not support the Clippers or even the NBA if they allow Sterling to keep his franchise. Loud and clear. So it’s up to the NBA to ignore the market or fix the problem.
And they’ve decided to fix the problem. Don’t be misled: for the market/fans/players, it’s about Sterling’s racism, but for the NBA, it’s about the business and keeping their market happy.
Look at it this way:
The NBA gets a portion of all Clipper money from Advertising Sponsors, Merchandise, Ticket Sales. They are in the playoffs right now and should be making tons of money off of these things. Instead, sponsors left in response to his comments, people were saying they weren’t going to go to the games, etc. At the playoff game last night, they only had ONE sponsor on the floor boards!
In a pure business sense, his comments directly hurt the NBA’s bottom line, as he tarnished their property. The very existance of a Board of Governors made up of team owners shows that the NBA is a group effort, governed by communial decisions.
I don’t think Cuban said nasty things about other races, but sure, there could be skeletons in his closet. I understand that being “punished” for private remarks is a slippery slope, but when you are in a position of power there ultimately have to be consequences.
@ Kiddo: HAH! I was just saying that to a few people yesterday! Thats got to be why Mark’s so concerned over Sterling’s leaked conversations.
Banned for life? Well he’s 80 right?
Still a good move on the Commissioner’s part.
I was out to lunch with friends at a Sportsbar yesterday when this was announced. This man sitting near us mumbled “he didn’t deserve this, paid his bill and left. My friend shouted yep racism is still admired by some even right here in good ole NY. The man just looked and kept walking.
Don’t even get me started on some of the comments on my hometown paper’s website, who can always be counted on to represent the worst of humanity. If I have to hear the words “thought police” again I’m going to throw something.
Agree that this was the right move by the NBA.
People like that baffle and enrage me in equal measure. I just don’t get it.
as 1 smart guy wrote on SI NBA if he were to sell he would have to pay + 300 million in taxes on capital gain difference but if his kids were to inherit the team after he passes and then they were to sell the team, taxes would be only on difference between market value of the team at time of his death til actual sale, meaning they would pay below 50 million. in taxes
that’s +250 million difference! no way he will sell.
+ his views are obvously dead wrong and I guess at his age he is incapable of any sort of rehabilitation but … he is currently paying his players of all color top dollar, has highest payed coach in the league (African-American) … my question is … if he is a douche privately does that really matter what privately he thinks ??? He got his “life imprisonment without possibility of parole” sentence (can you imagine this in real life, being sentenced 2-3 days after a crime ?), but will they go for the kill as well ? we will see ..
It does matter because his opinions were about specific people within the organization and it puts a stain on the group in its entirety. The fans and consumers of the NBA are also black people who generate revenue. Leaving him in place let’s everyone know that this is an acceptable practice and mindset for the organization as a whole.
He won’t have a choice if 3/4 of the other owners vote to strip him of his ownership rights. Sucks being in a franchise, huh?
To me the difference in amount of taxes paid on the sale of the team doesn’t mean that forcing a sale means Sterling is being unfairly punished for being a racist D-bag; it means there’s a fundamental flaw in the tax law. His descendants should have to pay just as much taxes if they sell after his death. Crap like this is why the uber rich continue to be uber rich, while the middle class is squeezed to death.
I agree that even if they get the 3/4 votes it may not mean a quick sale. He will get a team of attorneys to litigate this issue. He has been involved in extensive litigation already. He is a billionaire and has endless resources to fight this out in court. He is going to say he was illegally recorded without his knowledge when he had a reasonable expectation of privacy. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
Well, they could allow him to keep the team, but kick him out of the NBA. Then his team would have no where to play. Since it will take time in litigation, all the players could jump ship by then, or sue him because they got tossed out of the association through his desire not to sell, or to otherwise release them to other teams. Remember, their contracts are contingent upon being players on the team WITHIN the NBA. He’d be better off taking the money and running.
So THAT’s when his team should walk. Make him sell then or force the value to zero.
OK, I’m now good with this.
I want to say that in CA taping is legal as long as one of the participants in the conversation is aware of the taping?
And if the value of the team went to zero, what about all the people that depend on that team for their livelihood? The vendors that supply, the trainers, the doctors, the restaurants near the Staples Center… when a business goes under, a lot of people get hurt.
This guy has the face of an as*hole
My a$$hole would like to have a word with you. In private.
I’m so glad the NBA is taking this seriously. I hope he’s forced to sell.
Since you brought up Shark Tank, it sounds like an applicable solution to this mess; let’s put Sterling, his estranged wife and the archivist in a real shark tank and see how they fare. If he only wants whites around, let’s make ’em Great Whites.
Mr. Rochester loves you because you are made of awesome! 😀
LOL, j.eyre! I like the way you think.
They would kill each other before the sharks get them lol
Force him out. His antics are well documented and shouldn’t have been tolerated. He was the cheapest owner in the league for decades. He shouldn’t be allowed to partake in the billion dollar revenue off the backs of players he despises simply because they are black.
apparently Mark Cuban is now on board with forcing him to sell.
I think he tweeted something about being “100% in agreement with Silver”, or something like that.
That’s what I had heard on the news last night as well, which is why I was confused by this posting. I googled and put the comments he made above. Guess he changed his mind?
He appears to be in the early stages of dementia. It’s too bad no one is demanding a thorough neurological assessment.
I’m sure if he has dimentia that will get diagnosed and with the money he has he will get all the medical help he needs.
Are you tying to say that dimentia makes you forget your basic morality? You don’t become a disgusting racist because of dimentia. I’ve seen it in my family several times and that’s not the kind of change dimentia brings on in people.
I don’t feel one bit sorry for him and don’t think he needs any help from anyone right now.
Dementia can be fickle….. Sweet Christian women turn into raunchy cussing sex machines…. That’s just one example, I have seen it all (my mom was a nurse in a nursing home)
@ melodycalder – maybe the dementia just made them forget they were repressed because of their strict Christian upbringing… 😉
So you have sympathy for a racist slumlord?
I am thrilled with how the NBA handled this and how quickly they handled it. Of course, they knew full well that if they didn’t take a strong stand, the players were prepared to go on immediate strike. Good luck having a profitable business with no players!
Taco Bell back on the menu?
Well done to the NBA (although his racist attitude was not some out of the blue shock given his history, but OK). The sale issue is tricky. Legally I don’t know of a way to force it, so unless there is something in NBA by-laws? It would be better for everyone if he sold…but he strikes me as the self-righteous type.
A 3/4 vote from other owners is required to strip him of his ownership rights. And he obviously doesn’t get a vote himself.
If I own a McDs franchise but don’t stick to the franchise rules, I lose my franchise.
The board of governors will vote (they are the other owners). This is an option because the teams are franchises of the NBA. It isnt an independent company, it is a part of a bigger organization.
I feel like if he had any decency, he’d say “I’m sorry for all this, I’ll sell right now and you’ll never hear from me again.” Since that seems unlikely to happen, I think they should vote him out. They need a show of force to make it clear that sort of garbage will not be tolerated. If that makes Mark Cuban nervous, maybe he should ask himself why.
I don’t get how the wife can sue the mistress for the money this nasty old dirtbag spent on her? That just seems so pointless and pathetic. I don’t even get how that would work!
I replied to you below. In the wrong spot :/
Oh, I think it’s all just a way of embarrasing Stiviano and beating the bushes for more ammo against her husband if need be in any legal action of her own.
I scrolled all this way to see if anyone else thought this. On what possible grounds can you sue someone for receiving gifts from a letchy old man? I don’t get it at all.
She has been married to him for decades and they live in a community property state. So she is basically saying that he gave Vivian 2.5 million in property and money, and she did not give permission for those gifts.
@ Patricia-The suit alleges that Stiviano embezzled $1.8M and “transferred … community property … to or for the benefit of defendant Stiviano …. ” further that Mr. Sterling apparently quite voluntarily and without any duress “regularly provided community property funds to defendant Stiviano …
Sounds more like she Mrs. Sterling should be suing her husband.
Let’s see, they’re going to punish him, by giving him 600-700 million for his team and telling him to go away.
I’m sure the owners have some sort of morals or dignity clause in their agreements, so bu-bye.
Cynicism aside, a huge and long over due cultural moment in America. Well done NBA.
He’ll have a huge tax hit for it. And I’ll be willing to bet the IRS looking over his shoulder making sure he pays it all.
Sure, as he should.
Please update. Mark Cuban tweeted support for all of Silver’s decisions.
This guy is a douche no doubt and despicable, but this doesn’t sit right with me. These were private words said in confidence. Not aimed at any players or any ethnic person. He was expressing his opinion to his mistress. It’s a sad day when we can’t speak our own minds in our own homes. Being a racist, misogynist or what have you is not illegal. He is a jerk for sure, but something about this doesn’t sit right with me and this is coming from a mixed race female. I hate that it looks like I’m defending this idiot, I am NOT- but my Grandfather (and uncles) fought for free speech for Blacks in the Civil Rights Movement and for the right to vote. Freedom of speech must be only what is politically correct to say I guess.
As far as we know he wasn’t discriminating against players or not hiring ethnic players correct? He’s just a racist who doesn’t like photos of his mistress taken with black people? That isn’t illegal as far as I know.
This has nothing to do with freedom of speech. Freedom of speech protects you from the government. This is a private entity that doesn’t want to be associated with him. And this isn’t an isolated incident. He’s been accused of discriminating against minorities in his properties so while he may not have treated his athletes poorly he has treated others poorly.
He has been sued for discrimination in the workplace. He at one time held the dubious distinction of having to pay the largest fine in history for discriminatory housing practices in the slums he owned. It has been alleged that he would bring whatever young thing he was interested in screwing at the moment into the locker room when his players were showering to ogle their naked ‘black bodies’ (how would you feel about your boss doing that to you?).
It would have been nice if something had happened to him in relation to those things. And the NBA has been specifically asked why it didn’t act sooner. As to these being private words, as the Commissioner said, it doesn’t matter. They are out in the open now.
I still don’t understand the reasoning. If I go home after work, I can’t call my boss or co-worker a piece of sh@t? If everyone here were to be held accountable for things we say about others in private, I wonder how that would go over? I stand by my opinions and goes against everything I stand for. Wanna be a douche, racist, jerk? So be it, just don’t discriminate or harm people. Period. In this SPECIFIC incident, I think they were wrong to punish him so harshly. We can agree to disagree.
So to protect Sterling’s right to be a racist in private the NBA should allow its brand to become inextricably linked with racism, have its players go on strike, have sponsors drop it like a hot potato, have fans boycott?
That would be a very poor business decision.
Sterling has every ‘right’ to be a racist. He is not facing criminal charges. What he does not have is protection from any consequences from society at large.
That’s the great thing about freedom of speech – it protects your right to say certain things (subject to some limits..), but it doesn’t change the right of all other private citizens and companies not to associate with you because you are a d-bag.
Free speech means you can blab all you want, within limits and you can be a racist. It doesn’t intend that you have protections within private industry that has its own rules and codes of behavior. And I don’t understand your comment about a “Mixed race female”. Would it have had more significance to you had she been white?
p.s. “That isn’t illegal as far as I know. ”
I was unaware that he was facing criminal charges. Can you point me towards a link?
zbornak syndrome, you are exactly right and this is a slippery slope. Just wait til the thought police start coming after us little people. There was no uprising about his previous racial sins and now the world is up in arms for a private conversation. A player choked his coach and then was allowed to play again. Thought police are biased as well.
Its all about market pressure, not the “thought police”.
Chick-fil-a’s is a good example. The CEO opposed same-sex marriage. Those who disagreed started a boycott. Huckabee initiated a Chick-fil-a appreciation day in response to the boycotts and the company had a record breaking day of sales. The market said, “nope, we don’t care that the CEO of the company opposes same sex marriage, we’re eating there anyway” and they did. The market will not tolerate racist d-bags. Advertisers pulled out, the players protested and would likely have refused to play, the NBA would have had a serious issue. So Sterling is gone.
Had the previous racist incidents been widely publicized I suspect we would have seen the same result. Perhaps I live under a rock, but I had never heard the guys name until the latest controversy.
I’d like to see everyone be this passionate about the wholesale collection of private citizens’ information by the NSA, as an assault against the constitution. Instead, we see everyone getting upset, feeling that people’s rights to say, think and act on sh*tty impulses about race is when the freakin’ sky is falling. Nice priorities we’ve got going. BTW, the use of ‘Thought police’ is usually code for people who hold prejudicial ideas near and dear to their hearts.
It was a “private” conversation that he REQUESTED TO BE RECORDED. So there is no hidden agenda by any thought police.
The recordings were NOT secret! Stirling agreed to be taped by his mistress.
Also, his mentality was the he was the white plantation owner and his black players/coaches were his slaves. He is disgusting.
I would have no problem at all even if the recordings WERE secret. We live in a society where people have public personae which have nothing to do with who they really are. I think his girlfriend is a skank, but I wanna thank her for putting the tapes out there. As far as support by the owners goes, well, these guys know which side their baguettes are buttered on. A lot of them will probably be pissed, but they won’t jeopardize their own pocketbooks by siding with Sterling. And personally, I think the whole taped conversation was more about penis envy. He was upset about his girlfriend showing up at games with big black guys. Doesn’t change the fact that he’s a racist bastard.
If they had been “secret” could she try a whistleblower defense? 🙂
He should not have to sell. He OWNS the team. It is his. If there is a board of directors of the team then maybe they can force him out, or the public can decide to no longer support the organization.
In a free society how can you be forced to sell anything you own? I I guess maybe since it is an overall organization they can make him not welcome.
Yes, you can be forced to sell. Hostile take-overs. Being part of a franchise. In fact, even the government can come and take your property for a variety of reasons. This does not go against the pale. I don’t understand why everyone is so up in arms for rich racist guy. Much worse things happen to the middle and working class people with no more than a shrug.
Hostile takeovers are a bit more complex then you make them out to be. In hostile takeovers, the company buys the company through non-direct means, usually – but their is still consent – it just comes from the shareholders as opposed to the Board. They generally either buy publicly available stock through the open market, engage in a takeover through a proxy fight, or make a tender offer through the mechanisms set up by the Williams Act. A “hostile takeover” simply means the acquired entitiy’s BOARD rejected the offer – not the shareholders. Usually it is the shareholders who consent to the sale through selling their shares. As far as I know, NBA teams aren’t publicly traded in any capacity, so this is a poor analogy for the Sterling situation.
I was giving examples for “In a free society how can you be forced to sell anything you own?” in answer to the first person, not necessarily specific to Sterling. They could remove him from the NBA franchise and let him keep the team, essentially rendering it worthless, in essence creating a hostile takeover, where he would receive money for the sale, or the value of ownership would be obliterated if he kept it.
Kiddo, I understand that. I can support the NBA taking all the logical steps it has the legal power to take to punish Sterling (although I would question the wisdom of taking some actions that will disproportionatley impact the coaches and players as opposed to Sterling). Is there any way to legally disassociate Sterling from the team while doing minimal damage to the players and staff? I doubt it. Frankly, this is a legal bind, and no matter what happens, it will not be good. But I do question people who – in their zeal to punish this guy – are just going to hurt a lot of less-well off people even worse. That is why I am personally so cautious.
Sam, I would think that the players and coaches would have immediate cause to sue, having signed agreements to the NBA franchise. Sadly, I don’t know whether all the people hired have agreements, like people who clean up the showers, and whatnot, the facilities, ticket people, concession people and so on. If Sterling drags this out, it will make him look worse for all of those people’s sakes. Are they hired by the association or by whoever owns the structure? Although, I’m not sure if he would really give a damn about any of those people.
Sam, I think that’s exactly what the NBA is trying to do – get rid of Sterling with minimal impact on the coaches/players/other people involved in the organization. To do that, Sterling needs to sell the team outright. If not, the only other option to get rid of him is, as Kiddo has said, kick the franchise out of the NBA. That leaves Sterling with an essentially valueless company. While this wouldn’t be so bad for the players/coaches would could go elsewhere, it could be terrible for the other people involved as Kiddo has outlined.
You are right, in theory. However his team is a part of a franchise, the NBA. Its close to owning a burger restaurant and then buying into the Mc Donald’s franchise. If your burger restaurant does not fit the standards of the agreement you made when you joined McD’s, then you are no longer a member of that franchise.
So yes, he could keep his “team” per se– but he would lose *every* route of making money from them; no one to play, no merchandising etc.
NBA players are not allowed to strike: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_NBA_lockout#Racial_comments
If the NBA tosses the Clippers team from the NBA, then they wouldn’t be striking against the NBA. Right? New ground, I have no idea. I would imagine that they would just play out the rest of season and go from there.
The only thing she was archiving was his nasty old dong (and apparently their conversations). Hope it was worth it to him. I do wonder if someone paid her to record him.
Just wondering, huh?
In case others on this thread haven’t heard, certain pundit ‘luminaries’ such as Rush Limbaugh are ‘just wondering’ if Magic Johnson didn’t set Sterling up. They are ‘just wondering’ if it isn’t a little too convenient that he has said he might be willing to buy the team.
Ugh. Why won’t Rush Limbaugh just go away already.
Really? I hadn’t read that. It just seemed to me like given his history with racism and her apparent love for other people’s cash, she would be a good target if someone wanted to bring him down. I was actually thinking it might have been the person (? Baylor) who lost the lawsuit against him.
Everything is a conspiracy against rich white privileged men, doncha know?
LOL Kiddo, +1480324820
My objection to forcing him to sell is that then this idiot makes $$
1. The name of the mistress is Vanessa.
2. All of this is in retaliation for the wife suing her to get the money he spent on her back.
3. A picture of her hamming it up with Bishop Don Juan (if you don’t know who that is, google him. He’s definitely not a bishop) that is leading a lot of folks to suggest her profession of “archiving” is not new.
No I’m not saying he’s not at fault. Just find these interesting and inquiring minds generally want to know.
Cuban just wanted his name out there hedging his bet. Sorry Mark, there is no slippery slope here. If the owners care about the game of basketball (and the profits it brings) and the making the NBA be as good as it can be, and of course the obvious – treating everyone with respect and equal rights, then the Donald Sterlings of the world deserve nothing but the hand. And the hand says, sell up and move on.
He has brought pain to the game, it’s players and it’s fans. He needs to acknowledge this and cut ties to let the wound heal.
I am a little surprised that the NBA does not have the power to cancel what is essentially a franchise situation. That as “head office” they can’t cancel it and take over day to day operations until a new ‘owner’ can be found. Maybe change “team owner” to “franchise holder” hmmm?
I would guess that Sterling owns the team, but has a franchise agreement allowing that team to play in the NBA. All of the contractors with the players/coaches/vendors/etc are with Sterling, who has an agreement with the NBA that the Clippers are part of the league. If that’s the case, all the NBA could do would be to cancel the franchise agreement and kick the team out of the league, but not have someone else take the whole thing over.
No matter how I feel about this disgusting person, I cannot get behind making someone sell their property. I think that crosses a line. You should not ever have a judgment against you that forces you to sell something you bought. Repossession or something is understandable but this goes against our whole idea idea of property and rights to. Agree with Cuban it crosses a line that I doubt would hold up in any American court, if it had to be taken that far.
An NBA franchise is not ‘his’ property in the way you are implying.
This has been explained very well multiple times in this thread.
I’ll try another example.
Let’s say there’s a local McDonalds near you with the best play area around, and gets a lot of business from families with small children as a result. The owner is found guilty of sex offences with young children, none of which were committed onsite nor was the owner ever at the McDonalds during mealtime hours when the majority of children were there. Would you still support him/her keeping ownership of that McDonalds franchise? Not quite the same scenario, but something done on private time as well.
I don’t disagree with the decision, but I think the difference in your example is that the owner was convicted of a crime. Sterling’s racist remarks weren’t criminal, nor can he be tried for them. I think that may be where people are coming from. Honestly though, the only way to stop certain actions/behaviors is for there to be real consequences.
I understand that pedophilia is a crime when you act on it, Peppa. Or are you deliberately trying to miss the point?
I maintain that Mrs Sterling didn’t think it through when she sued the mistress (Ms Stiviano). Mrs Sterling HAD to know the mistress had dirt on her husband that could come out – after all, she was “Archiving” lol. Either Mrs Sterling wanted what happened to happen or she was very naive. I can’t imagine why she’d want what happened to happen because it is damaging their net worth (what the team is worth) and she’ll get less in their divorce when it happens or she’ll get less when he dies. Mrs Sterling would have been better off writing off the $1.8 million given to the mistress and letting the mistress walk away on good terms without spilling all the dirty secrets. Expensive mistake Mrs Sterling!
Maybe not. If he is still worth billions and this forces him to sell the team and sever ties with his paid companion, then Mrs Sterling doesn’t have to worry about the tape leaker being included in any future wills, especially if Mr Sterling was beginning to lose his marbles, so to speak. Her suit against the ‘mistress’ seems to imply that she was doing things outside of Mr Sterling’s agreement with her.
Personally I don’t think the NBA is that great. I mean they should have investigated him earlier because he has a documented history of discrimination. They were backed in a corner because of the tape but I bet he isn’t the only racist high up in that organization. This is a choice about keeping their organization profitable,containing scandal and keeping players on the court .
This situation reminds me of Mel Gibson and Oksana Gregorevia. I guess it’s the tapes.
Did V. release the tapes — or did wife’s divorce lawyer demand they be released? That’s what I heard.
I think everyone in this situation is to some degree a horrible person. The worst is of course Donald Sterling who is without a doubt a racist bigot. No amount of money can mask the sad, old man inside. Not to mention his cavorting with women 40 years his junior. Disgusting, period.
That said, the women involved are not much better. His wife, turns her eye while still being associated with this scumbag just to presumably keep her lifestyle. Shallow and pathetic. Why doesn’t she divorce him?
And the mistress… “V. whatever” (rolls eyes) Ok, fine, its commendable that she ousted this pig’s rantings for the world to hear, but it just smacks of self serving motives. Why did this come out now when the wife is suing? Why is she consenting to be with this disgusting old man? Why does every picture she takes reek of look-at-me-desperation?
Horrid people, and a sad reflection of too much money and not enough education/morals/whatever.
Over the last several days, I have been seeing some incredibly judgmental comments being made about both Sterling’s estranged wife and V. Stiviano. I love how everyone can sit back and say that they would not be willing to stay with an uber-rich man (Sterling) because he is an evil racist/asshole.
Look, I’m sure many people would do the same thing both of these women were doing to ensure their own financial stability (and security) and the stability of those that they love. I am a well-read, educated, and critical thinker woman, but you better believe that I would stay in communication with a person of Sterling’s stature if that meant that I could get financial stability (he gave V. Stiviano MILLIONS over the years), network with well-connected professionals, and provide financially for my family. Times are hard, so I’m not going to hate or judge them.
This conversation should be about HIM and the things that HE said. We shouldn’t instead be focusing on the women and making incredibly disparaging remarks about them. I am especially appalled because a lot of the responses about these women have been profoundly sexist.
I’m not a fan of hers but really, her background and lifestyle is NOT the focus here.
This story is much, MUCH bigger than whatever Sterling’s arrangement with her is.
For the record, I think it’s mainly being used by certain people as a deflection tactic.
Like, they can’t form a solid argument to defend this guy so throw her under the bus instead.
I also wonder if Sterling has trolls out there hitting up the comment boards just trashing her in order to make the conversation about her and not him.
Either way, it’s f*cking gross.
Fox news said that she was a paid employee of of the Clippers in ‘hospitality’. Now, if she was charged with that responsibility as a member of the Clipper’s staff, and he is telling her about a ‘white’s only’ policy that he wants her to adhere to, then this takes on an entirely different tone about discrimination practices of his organization within the NBA. If she was an employee, and not just a paid lover or companion hired independently for Sterling, then he wasn’t speaking his mind only to some friend, but to a person within the organization.
I believe she admits to the recordings but not the leak. But if she was responsible for the leak, then this does seem to make her more of a whistleblower, being employed by the Clippers, and not just Sterling.
@ Kiddo: Thanks for the information! Wow–just another layer to this wild story.
I think they’re just as bad as he is. I give his wife a little leeway because she’s been with him for so long but not his girlfriend. Given his history, I have a hard time believing he never once uttered a racist term in front of her. If you’re going to sit by someone’s side while they behave like this, especially if you’re a person of color you’re just as disgusting to me. He’s not her husband or family. She could have walked away but as long as the Bentleys and Birkins were coming in she stayed by his side. She’s no victim. She condoned his behavior.
No, I don’t think he should be forced to sell – and I will tell you exactly why (I have 2 reasons why, actually). For one, legally, they would have a hard time forcing him to sell. They can – and likely will try – and Sterling can – and likely will – tie it up in litigation until the day he dies, costing the NBA millions in legal fees. Sterling (a billionaire lawyer) can afford it. The NBA can not and will pass their legal fees on in terms of higher ticket prices.
Secondly, we’re talking about what someone said in a private conversation that was illegally recorded and then broadcast to the world. “He who casts the first stone” comes to mind. Which is not to say what Sterling said isn’t disgusting – it is – but he said it in private. Who here hasn’t said something in private they would be mortified of if it was made public? Imagine calling up one of your co-workers to bitch about your boss, thinking it was a private, confidential conversation, only to have your co-worker record it, play it for the boss and get you fired. I just think it sets a really dangerous precedent and reaks of mob justice, which I do not support.
Also keep in mind that if Sterling is forced to sell, he will make a HUGE profit – so all you’re oing is making a rich man richer. I hardly call that a punishment. Personally, I would do things a little differently. Devalue the team. Have players refuse to renew their contracts. Have free agents go elsewhere. Make it impossible for him to recruit good coaches and players. Have people stop going to the games. Turn the franchise into crap and then – THEN – hold a fire sale. That way, he doesn’t make such an obscene profit from it.
For the millionth time, he consented to the taping, as in, he knew he was being taped. There is nothing illegal about what she did.
FFS-my high school students have better reading comprehension skills.
What difference does that make? That doesn’t negate my point that 1) if he forced to sell, he’ll tie the NBA up in years of costly litigation and 2) if he sells now, he’ll make a massive profit that I’d prefer that repugnant man not receive. That the profit would come from Magic Johnson or Oprah Winfrey is an irony not lost.
People say he doesn’t “deserve” to own the team because of his racist views. Fair enough. But it’s okay if he profits from them? Who, exactly, is going to have the last laugh in that situation?
Your second reason was, ” Secondly, we’re talking about what someone said in a private conversation that was illegally recorded and then broadcast to the world. “He who casts the first stone” comes to mind.” That was one of 2 reasons why stated in the first sentence of you have exactly 2 reasons why he should not be forced to sell. Secondly, and then a reason followed by that word, indicates to me that there is a SECOND point. In this case it was to say why you don’t think he should be forced to sell.
It’s slippery slope taking/forcing the sale of someone’s property for thoughts they expressed in his own private opinions while he was being illegally recorded (the Sunshine Laws in California state that *both* parties to a conversation have to give consent for recording) and then having it leaked.
The man is a pig, no question, but doesn’t the US have a First Amendment that covers free speech, *especially* in one’s own domicile?
Apparently he did consent, so both parties knew.
Also, the first amendment protects you from the government impeding your free speech, not private parties. He’s not being charged with anything by the government.
AND HE AGREED
Again, reading comprehension, people.
And, as Sighs also said, the First Amendment protects you from the government preventing your free speech.
I suggest Grammar Rock, which also happens to include a few basic civic lessons as well. People really should watch.