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View Diary: Adam Silver's decision on Donald Sterling may be being made for him (130 comments)

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  •  Because you don't understand discrimination (0+ / 0-)


    •  as I understand discrimination law (1+ / 0-)
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      you can sue for acts, not for thoughts. I'm open to correction, though.

    •  In discrimination law (0+ / 0-)

      Is private racism taken as automatic evidence that all business decisions are made based on racial discrimination?

      Please educate me.  Who should be suing him towards what end and on what grounds?

      •  I agree that the grounds wouldn't (0+ / 0-)

        be related to racism, per se--I think any suits would probably have something to do with "losing sponsors" and other money-related, uh, "pain and suffering".

        The whole thing, dragged into court, would be a nightmare for the league. Therefore, it would seem that the NBA needs this to go away and it needs it to go away quickly. If Occam's Razor ever holds, anywhere, then in this instance, "the shortest distance" is for the league to not do anything that drags this shit out.

        This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

        by lunachickie on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:39:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Fear of a legal nightmare (1+ / 0-)
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          May be why the league has done little to Sterling in the past:

          For all the years former commissioner David Stern let Sterling slide, there's a strong belief Stern simply feared Sterling in the courts. Sterling is an attorney – he loves litigation – and Stern feared Sterling would become Al Davis to his Pete Rozelle.
          The "shortest distance" is probably to levy the maximum permissible suspension and fine and let others, such as boycotting sponsors and fans, create the financial pressure that might convince Sterling to sell.
          •  Great analogy (0+ / 0-)
            Stern feared Sterling would become Al Davis to his Pete Rozelle.
            Good Lord, the real Al Davis was bad enough. You bet the league doesn't want to see that!

            This all started with "what the Republicans did to language".

            by lunachickie on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:09:49 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  I think this idea that personal/private (1+ / 0-)
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        beliefs shouldn't cost anything is bullshit. First of all, if his beliefs were purely private, we wouldn't be having this conversation because we wouldn't know about them.

        Second, the idea that people just believe these things without "acting" on them is folly. When people are racist, it's never just private. If a person really believes what Sterling believes, they will voice those beliefs and/or act in ways that belie those beliefs.

        And Sterling has acted on them several times in the past, and been sued for them several times.

        Now, if Sterling were a fan then nobody would care. If he were not in a position to employ people or to influence the value of his franchise or to lose the NBA money, then I'd agree that his racism, while abhorrent, doesn't really warrant any action beyond condemnation.

        But he employs people, some of whom have alleged that he brought his mistresses into the locker room and encouraged them to admire his players' "beautiful black bodies".

        Now, if that's not creating a hostile work environment, I don't know what is.

        That's disgusting, and has no place in the NBA; and we certainly shouldn't be minimizing it by pretending that Sterling is no more than a private racist.

        •  Who is saying that this shouldn't cost him? (0+ / 0-)

          There are those who argue that there are legal limits to what it should cost him.  One limit is that there may be no legally permissible way for the NBA to directly force Sterling to give up ownership of the Clippers.  I don't think I've seen anyone say that this shouldn't cost him a fine and a suspension.  I haven't seen anyone who has said he should be allowed to retain his role as chairman of the board for the Clippers.

          If it were allowed, I would advocate taking away his ownership, but I don't think they are allowed to do that and I'm not going to pretend that they are so that I can get the desired outcome.

          •  Actually ... (0+ / 0-)
            Q: Is it possible for Silver and the NBA to terminate Sterling's franchise ownership?

            A: Yes. Under the terms of Paragraph 13 of the constitution, the owners can terminate another owner's franchise with a vote of three-fourths of the NBA Board of Governors, which is composed of all 30 owners. The power to terminate is limited to things like gambling and fraud in the application for ownership, but it also includes a provision for termination when an owner "fails to fulfill" a "contractual obligation" in "such a way as to affect the [NBA] or its members adversely." Silver and the owners could assert that Sterling's statements violated the constitution's requirements to conduct business on a "reasonable" and "ethical" level.


            I'm not a lawyer, but I'm pretty sure there's language in NBA contracts that bars racial discrimination and a hostile work environment.  If I were a player, and I felt compelled to stage a televised, silent protest because of public outcry over the owner's racist statements, I would feel that Sterling has violated the terms of that contract. I would sue him, and I would hope that others encouraged a boycott.

            •  You'd probably lose your lawsuit (0+ / 0-)

              It's theoretically possible that the NBA could terminate Sterling's ownership, but I think there are enough owners who don't think that Sterling violated the NBA's constitution and are honest enough to vote that way.  If I had a vote, I probably would hold that Sterling did not violate the requirements for "reasonable" and "ethical" conduct of business.

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