2 Views on NBA's Sterling Punishment

League wins praise for tough action, but shouldn't an invasion of privacy trouble us?

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 29, 2014 5:22 PM CDT

(Newser) – The NBA today came down hard on Clippers owner Donald Sterling after audio surfaced of his racist comments, with the league banning him for life from games and personnel decisions and making it likely he'll be forced to sell the team. Two of the more common sentiments in the immediate aftermath:

  • Bravo: It's "the most spectacular slam dunk in professional basketball history," writes Bill Plaschke in the Los Angeles Times. Sterling has "poisoned" the franchise with his bigotry for 30 years, and it's a relief to be done with him. Given his deep pockets and penchant for legal fights, this could still get seriously messy, but for now, it's cause of celebration. "With one dazzling, devastating move, the NBA has thrown down against evil."

  • Yes, but: Jeff Jacoby at the Boston Globe has zero sympathy for Sterling and isn't out to defend his racism. But he reminds everyone that Sterling's downfall arrived because a girlfriend secretly recorded a private conversation. Doesn't this deserve a little outrage, too, or are we already too accustomed to a no-privacy world? Remember "that it isn’t only other people’s dirty laundry that the whole world can get a good look at," he writes. "It is yours and mine, too. Once our privacy is gone, don’t count on getting it back."

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling in a file photo.
Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling in a file photo.   (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)
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