Sterling scandal exposes serious NAACP hypocrisy, dysfunction

leon jenkins

Leon Jenkins resigned from his post as president of the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP on Thursday, in what should be the first of several resignations due to the Donald Sterling debacle.

Los Angeles National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) President Leon Jenkins’ resignation on Thursday, in wake of the Donald Sterling scandal was too little, too late. It is clear that Jenkins has shown very poor judgment and that his actions were a blight on the venerable civil rights organization since there is no possible scenario under which Sterling could ever have been an accurate representation of the NAACP’s values, mission and scope. No scenario at all.

Leon Jenkins, sterling

Leon Jenkins former president of the LA chapter of the NAACP poses with Clippers Owner Donald Sterling who expressed anger that his female companion “associate with black people.”

The NAACP has a long, distinguished tradition of advocating for the rights of African-Americans and other minority groups who are on the periphery of society’s wealth and opportunities. That goal has been the fundamental mission of the organization since its inception, which is why the mentality of the Los Angeles chapter, under Jenkins’ leadership, is such a disgrace.

Jenkins, sterling

NAACP’s Leon Jenkins honors Donald Sterling who is flanked by his wife.

When the tapes surfaced of Sterling’s’ racist diatribe against blacks, emotions became heated as blacks and other minorities boiled in anger. But another significant fact that was not as publicized was that Jenkins and his team were planning to honor Sterling with a second Lifetime Achievement Award next week. The chapter had previously given Sterling two awards in 2008 and 2009, one of which was a Lifetime Award, which of course raises the question: How many lifetimes does Sterling have?

Sterling is a real estate tycoon, in addition to owning the Los Angeles Clippers and he settled a housing discrimination lawsuit brought by the Justice Department in 2006 for $2.7 million due to his refusal to rent housing units to minorities. At the time, Sterling said “Hispanics smoke, drink and just hang around the building” while “Black tenants smell and attract vermin.”  Yet the Los Angeles Chapter of the NAACP felt he was deserving of an award in 2008.

elgin baylor

Elgin Baylor served the Clippers for 22 years then filed a lawsuit in 2010 accusing owner Donald Sterling of a range of distasteful racist conduct and sentiments. Baylor lost in court.

Not to be outdone by his venomous disdain for minorities, Sterling continued a reign of terror resulting in Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor filing a wrongful termination lawsuit against him, after being with the Clippers for 22 years as a woefully underpaid general manager, earning $250,000 per year, compared to the millions paid to other executives in similar positions industry-wide. In his lawsuit, Baylor accused Sterling of a “plantation mentality.”

Some-People-Are-Calling-for-L.A.-NAACP-President-Leon-Jenkins-to-Step-Down (2)

According to Baylor, Sterling would parade women into the Clippers’ locker room to look at the “fine black bodies” of the players. Also, according to Baylor, Sterling staunchly refused to hire black coaches because he wanted to “have white a Southern coach coaching poor black players.” Again, such actions so impressed the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP that the leadership awarded Sterling with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009. To say this is an appalling display of poor judgment is a gross understatement.

Appearing on Don Lemon’s program on CNN last weekend, political analyst and news host Ben Ferguson did not mince words “The NAACP should be ashamed of itself for honoring Donald Sterling given his long history of racism,” he said. We at OnPointPress.net could not agree more with Mr. Ferguson, who boldly said what many did not. What could Jenkins and his leadership have been thinking? Were they not thinking at all?

leon jenkins

Leon Jenkins at press conference on 4/28/2014 announcing that he is rescinding the second Lifetime Achievement Award he and his chapter planned to give to Donald Sterling.

In a precursor to his overdue resignation, Jenkins held a press conference on April 28 and said the following: “The revelations that Mr. Sterling may have made comments in a phone conversation that was reminiscent of the ugly time in American history that contained elements of segregation and racial discrimination demand that the NAACP’s intention to honor Mr. Sterling for lifetime body of work must be withdrawn and the donation that he has given tot he LA NAACP will be returned.”

Jenkins gets no points for withdrawing an award that should never have been a thought in the minds of those trusted to lead such an important organization. This effort to lavish Sterling with multiple NAACP awards represents a huge stain on the mission and reputation of the NAACP and more resignations should be announced as that chapter cleans house and returns to its noble roots.-OnPointPress.net. 

Please follow us on Twitter @OnPointPress_.

 

Silver schedules 2:00 p.m. press conference, sponsors flee Clippers

 

NBA commissioner Adam Silver (l) will address the public in a press conference on Tuesday while Kevin Johnson (r) continues to organize efforts on the players behalf.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver (l) will address the public in a press conference on Tuesday while Kevin Johnson (r) continues to organize efforts on the players behalf.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced it will hold a press conference on Tuesday, April 29, to address the alleged statements made by Donald Sterling and the firestorm of anger that the recordings have caused. There has already been noticeable fallout since the recordings, allegedly featuring the Los Angeles Clippers owner, surfaced this weekend. In addition to players making public statements and displays of solidarity, there has also been financial ramifications. Several major sponsors, including State Farm, Kia and CarMax have withdrawn their support from the team.

Clippers coach Doc Rivers expressed how difficult this period has been for his team but he is not sympathetic to his team's owner.

Clippers coach Doc Rivers expressed how difficult this period has been for his team but he is not sympathetic to his team’s owner.

A handful of owners have voiced their displeasure with the situation and appear to favor  Sterling’s removal. Additionally, Kevin Johnson, Sacramento Mayor and the NBA Player’s Association’s special assistant, has expressed how serious the players are in seeing swift and harsh penalties levied against Sterling if the allegations are proven true. Clippers head coach Doc Rivers spoke to the media on Monday and made it clear that he believes that it is Sterling’s voice on the recordings.

“Yeah, I think he said those things,” Rivers said, stating his feeling of “anger” and the rage felt by his players.  Commissioner Adam Silver will have a chance to show great leadership in this situation, beginning with the press conference on Tuesday.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover Jr. is a sports aficionado and a management training consultant. Follow me @OpenWindowMES on Twitter.com.

Adam Silver must deliver stiff penalty to Clippers’ Sterling

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is expected to announce a decision about a penalty for Donald Sterling in the  next few days.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is expected to announce a decision about a penalty for Donald Sterling in the next few days.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

This week Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy created a stir when his idea of black people was captured on video. “Are they better off as slaves…or are they better off living off government subsidy?,” he asked about blacks. On Saturday, the world was reminded that racist attitudes come in different ways and from various levels. Los Angeles Clippers’ owner Donald Sterling found himself at the center of a controversy once a tape, allegedly of him making racist comments to his then-girlfriend, surfaced.

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling (r) sitting court side at a game with then-girlfriend V. Stiviano (l).

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling (r) sitting court side at a game with then-girlfriend V. Stiviano (l).

The almost ten-minute tape recording was released on TMZ.com and captures Sterling urging then-girlfriend V. Stiviano to keep her associations with minorities private. The conversation, prompted by an Instagram photo of Stiviano and Hall of Famer Earvin “Magic” Johnson, has yet to be authenticated by the NBA. In a press conference on Saturday evening, NBA commissioner Adam Silver was emotionless  in his evaluation of the Sterling situation. In a somber tone, Silver stated:

“All members of the NBA family should be afforded due process…which is why I’m not yet prepared to discuss any potential sanctions.”

A small sample of the recording of the conversation between Sterling and Stiviano.

A small sample of the recording of the conversation between Sterling and Stiviano.

While Silver may be reticent to discuss potential sanctions against Sterling, it doesn’t change the fact that serious sanctions are in order once the recording is authenticated. Silver said: “We hope to have this [investigation] wrapped up in the next few days.” However, there is no real precedent for an issue of this manner. Typical punishments that commissioners mete out to executives like fines and suspensions will not have a significant impact in the long run for a multi-millionaire owner like Sterling.

The only suitable punishment in the eyes of many would be his removal as owner. Whether that happens or not, Silver needs to demonstrate that he is willing to lead the owners to come to the decision that illustrates the outrage the NBA shared about Sterling’s comments.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a sports aficionado and a management training consultant. Follow me @OpenWindowMES on Twitter.com.