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NBA Action More Racist than Sterling's Statements

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The NBA has criticized L.A. Clipper owner Donald Sterling for his statements that many regard as racist. However, shortly after the recording of his conversation became public the NBA took an action that was a racist insult to the black players of the L.A. Clippers. The NBA offered to make a "grief counselor" available to the Clippers.

Grief counselors are often provided to children to help them cope with the death of a classmate. The NBA commissioner's office essentially was indicating that it believed the Clippers were such immature children that a minor questionable statement was the emotional equivalent of a death. I can understand the black players being upset by Sterling's statement, but not grieving about the statement.

Discussion of Sterling's comment to V. Stiviano about attending games with black athletes has focused on what was said and ignored the situation itself. His decision to order her not to attend games with black athletes is consistent with the behavior of a man who is having trouble getting a daughter or granddaughter to follow his advice.

He doesn't explain his reasoning very well, a common occurrence when a man tries to offer dating advice to someone young enough to be his granddaughter. He appears have been attempting to warn her of the sexist stereotype image of NBA players, especially black players, that comics have encouraged with jokes about NBA players leaving children all over the country. I don't know the attitudes of L.A. residents, but, putting it bluntly, Sterling is suggesting that people will think she's just some kind of a sex toy if she attends a game with black athletes, especially admitted lothario Magic Johnson. He seems to have been attempting to warn her of the attitudes of others rather than talking about his own attitudes.

Johnson along with the late Wilt Chamberlain are largely responsible for creating the [probably exaggerated] image that NBA players are frogs rather than princes. A frog jumps from bed to bed. A prince is devoted to his princess. Chamberlain claimed to have sex with over 20,000 women. Johnson claimed he once had 300- 500 sex partners per year.

A passage from a book by Jerry West says: “That November, as a new season was set to open, Magic Johnson announced to the world that he was HIV positive, a stunning event that brought revelations about the climate of sexual frivolity around the Lakers. Johnson admitted he had been sleeping with 300-500 people a year. The team’s locker room, and its sauna, had been a place where the star and other players had entertained women, even right after games. Johnson would retire to the sauna after a game, have sex, then put on a robe and return to the locker room for his post-game media interviews. How far had the team gone in condoning such questionable behavior? ‘I cared,’ West said in his interviews for this book. ‘I did things for those guys. It was ridiculous, some of the things I did for those guys. If the public knew they’d be outraged. It was a pretty crazy period for us.’"

If NBA teams, including the Clippers, still allow this behavior it would have provided part of the motivation for Sterling's warning to Stiviano.

a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kobe_Bry...">Kobe Bryant was arrested for rape in 2003 when he misinterpreted a visit by a female hotel employee and thought she was there for sex like the other women he normally attracted.

After my first post on this s subject I received an email about Rev. Russ Weaver's sermon titled "Easily Offended" that he delivered that week on Cowboy Church. Weaver's most important point is that a person can choose to be a "Victim" who lets himself be offended or a "Victor" who doesn't allow someone to control him with mere words. I'll remind readers that I'm a Vietnam Vet so I know what it's like to be called names.

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