Donald Sterling: still adjusting to the times
With a lifetime ban from the National Basketball Association and a 2.5 million dollar fine slapping him in the face, Donald Sterling continues to twist and turn racial boundaries, reminding the nation as to just how much the hauntings of history are still present in today's "equality for all" society. And while enduring racism and discrimination isn't old news, even in a world with refined morals, the revelation of Sterling's true colors must be seen as a much more heartbreaking truth.
Unlike the more recent cases of racial controversy such as the Trayvon Martin case or the Riley Cooper incident, which are both very deserving of their own media storms, this incident involves the billionaire owner of the multi-million dollar Los Angeles Clippers.
Celebrity status certainly does not equate to greater importance, but the significance of such a revelation is hard to argue.
Sterling's comments on a tape recording obtained by TMZ, were not any more racist than the previously mentioned cases. However, this case in particular paints a discouraging picture on just how little society really knows about the authority figures it supports.
The Clippers are a team that consists primarily of African-American athletes; a team who partly represents a city filled with a diversity of races and ethnicities. To find out that it has been run by a racist with what many have called a "plantation mentality", is especially troubling for those who fight for racial equality.
"People feel certain things," Sterling said in the audio. "Hispanics feel certain things towards blacks. Blacks feel certain things towards other groups. It's been that way historically, and it will always be that way."
Whatever the desires of society may be, it has become painfully obvious that racism and discrimination can never be fully abolished. There is always going to be the individual who lives under a racist cloud simply because they will not change the way they choose to think.
Sterling dares to put the blame on history for the hypocrisy in his own senile mindset. His mentality is no different than any other human being unable to break free from the clutches of racist culture.
However, he is not just any human being. He is a man in a strong position of power. This is a man who has sat courtside at Clipper games, interacting with fans and players, including those of African-American descent.
Such a racist figure living under the noses of an entire city as well as an entire franchise raises questions on just how much trust should be put in the leaders of our time.
By making the unjust comments, Sterling did not simply become just another person unable to let go of idiotic views and values of the past. In turn, he unraveled a plethora of possibilities of what others may be living among us under a corrupt ceiling.
Sterling's revelations are not nearly as impacting as the earth trembling power that the Lance Armstrong disaster carried, but they couldn't have come at a more delicate time. In today's day and age, humans seemingly scratch and claw for racial progress everyday, only to be set back by inhumane individuals like these.
In the tape, Sterling tells his girlfriend that it is fine to fraternize with black people and black athletes as long as she does not promote them to the public by posting Instagram photos of them and taking them to the games.
Thoughts like these are what keep the world in a strangle hold. Love black people, as long as you are not seen with them, right?
The main argument Sterling poses in the audio is that the society lives in a culture where certain groups dislike other groups based on race and ethnicity, and anyone opposed to it needs to adjust the way they live.
Apparently Sterling has failed to notice how the world has drastically changed since the 1860s and it is he who has failed in adjusting with the times.
He may think that his comments represent what the rest of the world may be thinking, but it is he who has gotten lost within himself, unable to climb out of the racial hole he was dug in.
"How about your whole life, you could do whatever you want," Sterling said to his girlfriend. "You can sleep with them, you can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it, and not to bring them to my games."
Remember that "plantation mentality" that people are talking about? Sterling brings it full circle with when his girlfriend asks him if he understands which race makes up the majority of the team he owns.
"I support them and give them food, and clothes, and cars, and houses. Who gives it to them? Does someone else give it to them?," Sterling said.
These players were given a job to do and they have performed at the highest level for their owner. They played a fantastic season only to have it tarnished by an ungrateful owner who sees them more as his pawns than his players.
People like Sterling don't move forward. They don't see the world as it is because they only see what is in their own hypocritical minds. There is no arguing with them and there is no changing the culture which they abide by.
"But maybe you want to adjust to the world," Sterling tells his girlfriend.
I think it's safe to say that Mr. Sterling wants the world to adjust to himself.