The White, White Underbelly

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Memo to Donald Sterling's defenders: WHY DO YOU HATE PRIVATE INDUSTRY?

As you probably know by now, the NBA has banned Donald Sterling for life, and wants to vote to force him to sell the L.A. Clippers, because the NBA is not a place for racist douchebags. Or at least racist douchebags that get caught.

Sterling doesn't think the NBA can force him to sell the team. The NBA thinks they can. It'll probably be settled in court. But two things are certain. First, this is about how the National Basketball Association chooses to run their business and enforce the ethical conduct clauses of their contracts, and second, a lot of people don't understand that.

So we devote today's column to those people, people who would never, ever condone racism, but who strenuously object to racists facing consequences for their racism. So we can add the meaning of the word "condone" to things they don't understand. Let's dive into the Star Tribune's comments, shall we?

"Not condoning racism by any means but political correctness has gotten to the point that we can no longer have opinions or beliefs, except for what the media continues to dictate to us as acceptable.” - "genericlogin".

I'm not sure where "genericlogin" thinks he is, but it seems to me that he has opinions and beliefs, and is sharing them in a space provided to him by... THE MEDIA. I mean, yeah, newspapers are dying, but they're still the media. Way to disprove your thesis by stating it, fuckwad.

"Does offense trump the Constitution? I don't have to like what he said but I will defend his right to say it. If you don't like this you should live in a country where your speech can land you in prison.” - "markap".

Donald Sterling isn't going to prison. His boss is punishing him. And the Constitution doesn't guarantee you the right to own a billion dollar sports franchise if the guy that runs the league thinks the things you had a right to say make it impossible for his league to function. Sterling's not even having the team confiscated. He'll walk away from this with a giant pile of money, he just won't be able to spend that money on NBA tickets. Cry me a river.

"No room for public comments that he said...except that it was not public...and if a black man says this same type of thing about a white person..well it's just not news...such a double standard world we live in!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” - "justwinbaby".

Fun statistical fact. "justwinbaby" used 14 exclamation points in his comment. If you subtract the number of comparable black-on-white situations from that number, you get a total of 14. Feel free to keep being outraged by your fantasy universe, though.

"We are entering in a Facists state and we are allowing it.” - "elle2008".

This one gave me pause. Because I do admit, when I saw pictures of Donald Sterling, I had shameful feelings that could be described as facist. And it's wrong of me to judge Donald Sterling based on his weird, creepy face. I don't think that makes America a state full of facists, though.

"When one of the black players says "why are you dating that white girl" to a black player, will he then be fined and banned for life? What about hanging out with rappers with lyrics so unbelievably racist, sexist, and offensive they won't print them? Can they still be best buds? How does this not deserve fines and suspensions? I think it is a complete knee-slapper that they are going to donate the money to a group that promotes after themselves showing absolutely no tolerance. ” - "BillG".

I hope Bill has a stockpile of false equivalencies in his basement, because he's going through them like they were going out of fashion. Man, do I wish they were going out of fashion.

Sterling didn't care who dated who. He just didn't want it known that black people were going to his basketball games. Not the same thing. Hanging out with a racist is not the same as being a racist. Being racist is not the same as being offensive. Making any damn sense is not the same thing as your last sentence.

But let me extend an olive branch to all these white commenters afraid that, thanks to the obvious double standard, white people are getting the short end of the stick. I guarantee you that when an African-American billionaire team owner gets recorded saying that he doesn't want his half-Swedish, half-Norwegian mistress to post pictures of herself on Instagram with Caucasians, he's going to be in big trouble.