Donald Sterling is an American business magnate and former attorney. He is the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers professional basketball franchise of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Sterling acquired the Clippers in 1981 for $12.5 million, and as of 2014, the team is valued at $575 million by Forbes magazine. Sterling has been the longest-tenured owner in the NBA since the death of Los Angeles Lakers majority owner Jerry Buss in 2013.
On April 25, 2014, TMZ Sports released a recording of a conversation between Sterling and a female friend, V. Stiviano. In the recording from September 2013, a man confirmed to be Sterling was irritated over a photo Stiviano posted on Instagram in which she posed with Basketball Hall of Fame player Magic Johnson. Sterling told Stiviano: "It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you're associating with black people" and "You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want", but "the little I ask you is ... not to bring them to my games."
Clippers president Andy Roesen issued a statement the following day, indicating that Stiviano was being sued by the Sterling family and had "told Mr. Sterling that she would 'get even'" with him. A month earlier in March, Sterling's wife, Rochelle, had sued Stiviano for the return of a $1.8-million Los Angeles duplex as well as a Ferrari, two Bentleys and a Range Rover she said her husband bought for Stiviano.
On April 29, 2014, Sterling was banned from the NBA for life and fined $2.5 million by the NBA after recordings of him making racist comments were made public.
I am not choosing the side of 'right' or 'wrong', I am just explaining thoughts. It is not only the fact discrimination. The main problem arises after the white discriminating groups claim that discrimination is an idea of the past. Then, there are situations like Trayvon Martin, Rodney King, Don Sterling, etc. Very few situations reach the media. There are stereo typing and discrimination are exercised everyday, but they are still claimed to no longer be practiced.
On the other hand, this country claims that everyone has a right to believe what they want; right or wrong. Many people talk differently about someone, in the comfort of their own 'home' vs in their presence. (Boss, teacher, associate, etc.) Don Sterling did not-publicly-say anything public. If everyone would be punished, immediately, for their non-public beliefs, there would be many punishments. Don Sterling is being punished for his beliefs.
Yet, the NBA has the right to 'accept' or 'deny' anyone's NBA involvement based on anything. You do not have to do business with anyone that you do not want to. It is known that the actions and beliefs of an organization's involved partner has a direct effect on the organization's reputation. So, how do you view this situation? Unlearn.