The Los Angeles Clippers have a PR nightmare on their hands. TMZ obtained an audio clip of owner Donald Sterling forbidding his biracial girlfriend from publicly associating with Black people. His racist rant, which went on for nearly 10 minutes, started after she posted an Instagram photo of herself with Magic Johnson.
The heated argument took place on April 9th with V. Stiviano — who is Black and Mexican. “It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with Black people. Do you have to,” he asked. “You can sleep with [Black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on that…and not to bring them to my games.”
“I’m just saying, in your lousy f******* Instagrams, you don’t have to have yourself with, walking with black people,” he continued. “Don’t put him [Magic] on an Instagram for the world to have to see so they have to call me. And don’t bring him to my games.”
In response to the shocking audio, Magic Johnson said he feels betrayed and wants Sterling to step down from his position. “I thought we were friends. We’ve broken bread together several times. It’s almost like, do you smile in my face but behind my back you talk about me? I’d have felt better in 1979 if you would have just told me you don’t like African Americans, and then I would have known how to deal with you,” he told TMZ. “He has to step down or sell the team.”
Johnson went on to encourage Black fans to boycott future games. “He wants our money but doesn’t want us to show up,” he added.
.@cjbycookie and I will never go to a Clippers game again as long as Donald Sterling is the owner.
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) April 26, 2014
Of course, Internet is in uproar. Snoop Dogg posted a curse-filled video, where he described Sterling as a “racist piece of s**t.” Rapper Meek Mill tweeted “Donald Sterling is the definition of racism.” And Jesse Jackson released a statement, saying the league “must respond and respond quickly.”
“The NBA must investigate L.A. Clippers owner, Donald Sterling’s, recent racial comments that were caught on tape and discipline him. No one should be allowed to own a team if they have in fact engaged in this kind of racial language,” the activist told EURweb. “We are prepared at National Action Network to rally in front of the NBA headquarters if this matter is not immediately dealt with.”
@NotBillWalton: Hey @CP3 @blakegriffin32. Money can’t mean everything to you guys. We need you to publicly denounce Donald Sterling. Do Not stay silent.
@SurvivinAmerica: If Dr. King can risk his LIFE to stand up against systematic racial injustice, @CP3, Doc Rivers, Blake Griffin & Clippers can risk a paycheck.
@NelsonEmpowered: @CP3 so are you gonna keep making that money for slavemaster or stand up for blacks? #boycottclippers
@ThePhenom007: The ball is literally in your court @CP3 and the rest of the Clippers. Boycotting today’s game would be the move against your racist boss
@outtherebad: If Blacks ever wanted to show power & soladirity, Now’s the time. #LAClippers players should walk on court and NOT PLAY. @CP3
The National Basketball Association has officially launched an investigation into the audio recording. According NBA Executive Vice President of Communications Mike Bass, “We are in the process of conducting a full investigation into the audio recording obtained by TMZ.”
He continued, “The remarks heard on the recording are disturbing and offensive, but at this time we have no further information.”
This wasn’t the first time Sterling was accused of racism. According to TMZ, he was sued twice for refusing to rent apartments to Blacks and Latinos, and longtime Clippers executive Elgin Baylor filed an employment discrimination suit on the basis of age and race in 2009.
The scandal definitely puts Clippers players in an awkward situation. They have a playoff game tomorrow.
Listen to the disturbing audio and share your thoughts in the comment section, below.