There are those who will argue that such a ban is a violation of Mr. Sterling’s free speech rights but it would be wise to consider a few things:
1. There are countless organizations that require adherence to a specific code of conduct for continued membership. Many of them—like police forces, example—forbid members from making certain types of public statements, or even expressing those sentiments in circles that might leak out. Folks get thrown out of scouting for breaking the rules or excommunicated from church for infractions. They can be banned from business organizations for going against the stated principles of that group.
2. The right to free speech does not mean that it comes without a cost. As many elders used to teach, do and say what you want—just be willing to pay the cost of those actions. One cost might be an economic boycott. But, if you’re principles are true, so be it.
While we don’t necessarily agree with it, we have to applaud the courage of those folks in Arizona who don’t want to serve gays and other folks they say go against their “religious beliefs.” Nor do we have a problem with the Texas gun shop owner (we think it was Texas, not that we were paying much attention) who refuses to sell guns to Obama supporters. At least they have the courage to own their particular biases. But, by the same token, we support the opposition’s right to free expression which might take the form of an economic boycott. After all, we’ve never understood some people’s rush to give money to people who openly admit they despise those customers.
Such situations also might have an unexpected truly American boon: We can see some businesses getting extremely rich by expressing their desire to serve those social castoffs. We’ve always said that, at the end of the day, race is about the politics of money! At times, there’s money to be made by setting people who look different against each other—it keeps poor folks of all colors from seeing their commonality and it allows the oligarchs in charge to create a “buffer race” to keep a class revolution at bay. And, on the other hand, there’s money to be made by picking up those customers no one else seems to want. For example, there are some “high end” department stores that laugh at the online pictures of common folk coming through the doors of a well-known, massive discount chain. But, who’s the biggest? Again, there’s something to be said about serving those whom the elite consider castoffs.
NBA bans Clippers owner Sterling for life
By Steve Almasy and Ashley Fantz, CNN
(CNN) — Basketball Commissioner Adam Silver slapped Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling with a lifetime ban from the sport and a $2.5 million fine Tuesday over racist remarks attributed to Sterling.
Silver said the National Basketball Association “will begin immediately” the process to force Sterling to sell the team, which he has owned since the 1980s.
“Sentiments of this kind are contrary to the principles of inclusion and respect that form the foundation of our diverse, multicultural and multi-ethnic league,” Silver said. Regardless of whether Sterling’s views were expressed in private, “They are now public and they reflect his views.”
Sterling admitted it was his voice on the recording, Silver said. Asked whether the owner expressed any remorse for the comments, Silver said, “Mr. Sterling has not expressed those views directly to me.”