Tuesday, April 29, 2014

An Evershifting Line in the Sand

The L.A. Clippers have been embroiled in a controversy over admitted racist comments made by their owner. Let me say that I don't follow basketball other than to occasionally catch the playoffs or championship games. Let me also say that I don't know Donald Sterling from Adam. It pains me to say it, but unless something you say is threatening or borders on liable, you should be able to speak your mind freely. That is one of the tenets interwoven into our Constitution (our first amendment) by the Founders. We'll probably never get to hear or read what was said; but just about everyone has a finger in the pie. The black players (African American, if you like) and blacks in general are just as guilty when it comes to slandering their race. For that matter, so are all the other ethnicities on the planet.  I say that as a point of fact, not to condone the behavior. As a child I lived where blacks and other ethnicities intermixed in harmony with each other, so I know it's possible. One thing that confuses me; and seems to be the elephant in the room, is that we are all of mixed race. Every ethnicity has some sin of their forebears that they have to bear. It is fine, even a necessity, to remember our past and herald (or denigrate) those that forged it. However; to hang on to the errors and failures of the past and to further use them as a blunt instrument of hate, is just wrong. In my opinion a league that is comprised of over 80 percent black players sends the wrong message by punishing someone so harshly for a slip of the tongue. Again; just my opinion, but as long as we walk on egg shells and feel threatened by speaking our mind we will never establish a dialog or working relationship. Without that there is no end to racism in this country, or the world, for that matter.

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