Longer Tape Of Donald Sterling's Alleged Racist Rant Released, Obama Condemns Statements
If Clippers owner Donald Sterling was hoping he could dismiss a taped, racist rant attributed to him with a vague, sort-of denial, he should think again.
Deadspin acquired the alleged 15-minute, unedited version of the tape that puts the conversation in context. With much clearer audio, a man’s voice can be heard saying that blacks are treated “like dogs” in Israel, and that the woman, allegedly his then-girlfriend V. Stiviano, shouldn’t bring black people to the games.
When she tries to reason with him, he says he’ll find a girlfriend to do his bidding if she won’t. You can hear the whole, sad, pathetic exchange over at Deadspin.
President Barack Obama was on a diplomatic mission in Malaysia when questions turned toward the tape of Sterling allegedly making racist comments, a CNN video reveals. Obama replied by basically saying let the guy speak—he’ll condemn himself.
“I don’t think I have to interpret those statements for you—they kind of speak for themselves,” he said. “… When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don’t really have to do anything, you just let them talk. That’s what happened here.”
He continued, calling the comments “incredibly offensive,” saying he was confident NBA commissioner Adam Silver will address it, and that it was an example of how “the United States continues to wrestle with the legacy of race and slavery and segregation.”
“That’s still there, the vestiges of discrimination,” he said. “We’ve made enormous strides, but you’re going to continue to see this percolate up every so often.”
Yesterday, Sterling and the Clippers offered a statement saying they didn’t know if the original tape leaked by TMZ “was legitimate or had been altered,” and that the “recording is not consistent with, nor does it reflect his views, beliefs or feelings.” However, fallout continues to pour in from all over the place.
NBA great and majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats Michael Jordan has issued a statement about Sterling, according to The Associated Press’ Jenna Fryer:
“I look at this from two perspectives—as a current owner and a former player. As an owner, I’m obviously disgusted that a fellow team owner could hold such sickening and offensive views. I’m confident that Adam Silver will make a full investigation and take appropriate action quickly. As a former player, I’m completely outraged. There is no room in the NBA—or anywhere else—for the kind of racism and hatred that Mr. Sterling allegedly expressed. I am appalled that this type of ignorance still exists within our country and at the highest levels of our sport. In a league where the majority of players are African-American, we cannot and must not tolerate discrimination at any level.”
And Larry King broke his silence about the controversy with the following tweet:
If that weren’t enough, the L.A. chapter of the NAACP had been scheduled to give Sterling its Lifetime Achievement Award at its 100th anniversary gala dinner May 15, according to City News Service. The state NAACP called its L.A. chapter to urge it to cancel its plans, which it agreed to today.
“He is not receiving a lifetime achievement award from the NAACP,” Lorraine Miller, NAACP interim vice president, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The state NAACP also urged black and Latino basketball fans to stick it to Sterling by doing what he asked for—not attending Clippers games.
Watch the “NBA Countdown” crew offer their thoughts on the controversy, as Jalen Rose calls it the most “inept, irresponsible thing that a owner could possibly do” and says he’ll not go to any Clippers games until Sterling’s ownership of the team is addressed.