Target: Donald Sterling, owner of LA Clippers, NBA basketball team
Goal: Demand team owner apologize for racist remarks
Donald Sterling, owner of the National Basketball Association team the LA Clippers, was caught on audiotape going on a tirade of vicious racism. While his lawyers maintain that his girlfriend, V. Stiviano, may have altered the tape, it is difficult to overlook that Sterling has a history of racial discrimination. The rant was in response to Ms. Stiviano posting a picture on Instagram of herself with former NBA star, Magic Johnson. Many people from Magic Johnson himself to President Barack Obama has weighed in on the controversy. While Mr. Sterling’s First Amendment rights guarantee him the right to express his despicably racist opinions, he nonetheless owes an apology to the African American players he employs, his girlfriend, who is herself half African-American, and to the many fans of the Los Angeles Clippers who were offended by his remarks.
In the tape, which seems to chronicle a heated argument between Sterling and Stiviano, Mr. Sterling is heard raging against his girlfriend for posting pictures of friends who are black at Clippers games. He rages, “And I’m just saying that it’s too bad you can’t admire him privately. And during your ENTIRE [EXPLETIVE] LIFE, your whole life, admire him — bring him here, feed him, [EXPLETIVE] him, I don’t care. You can do anything. But don’t put him on an Instagram for the world to see so they have to call me. And don’t bring him to my games. OK?” Although Mr. Sterling’s lawyers maintain that the tape was doctored and have worked to characterize Ms. Stiviano as a jilted gold digger, his history of racial discrimination has lead many to believe the accusations. Mr. Sterling has settled multiple lawsuits brought by tenants of rental properties he owns, who claim they were discriminated against by Mr. Sterling.
Magic Johnson, the subject of the Instagram picture alluded to in the recording, spoke to news outlet TMZ saying, “It’s a shame that Donald Sterling feels that way about African-Americans. He has a team full of amazing African-American basketball players that are working to bring a championship to Clippers fans. The Clippers also have a strong minority fan base.” Clippers player DeAndre Jordan also responded on Instagram. According to some sports journalists, Clippers players have been meeting in secret to discuss what action to take. Even President Barack Obama weighed in, calling the remarks, “incredibly offensive.”
Dear Donald Sterling,
Your remarks were unconscionable. At the very least you owe an apology to your girlfriend, Magic Johnson, Clippers players, and fans. Your remarks were hurtful and offensive, and belie a prejudicial attitude toward black players, fans, and sports experts.
I am writing today to condemn your words and demand that you publicly apologize to all those involved.
[Your Name Here]