Today\’s quote is from Adam Silver, National Basketball Association (NBA) Commissioner, and is in the form of his announcing the punishment he intends to mete out to Los Angeles Clippers owner donald sterling (according to the article at CBS – Los Angeles, Silver had a forensic expert check the tapes, and it was determined they are authentic):
“Thehateful opinions voiced by that man are those of Mr. Sterling. Theviews expressed by Mr. Sterling are deeply offensive and harmful.That they came from an NBA owner only heightens the damage and mypersonal outrage. I am banning Mr. Sterling forlife from any association with the Clippers association or the NBA.Mr. Sterling may not attend any NBA games or practices, he may not bepresent at any Clippers facility, and he may not participate in anybusiness or decisions involving the team.”
Adam Silver wins Quote Of The Day award for handing down a punishment so severe that even the most demanding critics will probably be happy with it. (Whether sterling accepts this punishment or fights it legally…which, given that this is a freedom of speech issue, coupled with the fact that if California has a two-party agreement law for phone conversations – which I think it does – this may not even be admissible, he probably would win).
But he also gets a question from me (and, I hope, others): what will his punishment be for New York Knickerbocker executive, and former NBA star, larry Johnson, who tweeted that:
“Black people your Focusing on the wrong thing. We should be focusing on having our own, Own team own League! To For Self!!”
johnson\’s comment is every bit as repugnant as what sterling said. And let\’s remember that he did not say it in private, thinking it was to just one person….he tweeted it out to the world.
So how much is johnson\’s fine going to be? Will he be banned for life too? Will he be banned from going to Knick games? Or is racism punishable only if it comes from a White owner, but fine and dandy if the source is a Black executive?
Oh, one other thing: we have yet to find out whether donald sterling will accept this punishment or fights it in court. And if he does, it is very likely he will win, because a) this is a freedom of speech issue and b) since California requires two-party consent for making telephone conversations public, his comments would not even be admissible in a court of law.
In other words sterling, if he cares to, could create enough of a mess so that the NBA just might have to rethink its decision.