The fallout from racist remarks by L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling continues. After audio taping of disparaging remarks against Black players emerging, reactions came from a number of people. From the blunt and profane Snoop Dogg, to the guarded and pragmatic President Obama, Donald Sterling has been rightfully berated. Although I have to say that as someone who is not surprised when we discover the bigotry of these owners of NBA teams, this all seems very easy. Now, what do I mean by that?
I mean, that it is easy for people to direct their outrage at individual, freshly exposed racists. We are almost certain to see an official response from NBA Commissioner Adam Silver sometime this week. However, despite all of the commentary, its easy to vilify “lone” racists and lose focus of the bigger, systemic and institutional racism that is too pervasive to be exposed by secret recordings. Last week, the Supreme Court did some serious damage to decades of attempts to remedy racial inequities, and there was no unified response from celebrities and politicians-aside from the progressive faithful. Aside from enjoying the various memes and mocking photos of various Clippers branding, lets not forget that there are bigots out there who are far too smart to be caught on tape.
Also, in so far as the comments about the Clippers players themselves, these are not the days where athletes take their cues from activists. Aside from symbolic protests, the culture of working towards a social goal with wider causes doesn’t seem to be there. So, it may be a mistake to expect that on a wide scale. As things progress, and more details reveal themselves, its sure to get more interesting.