A rich old white man instructs one of his black employees in private not to be photographed with black men. The black men include other employees he pays millions of dollars for their skills. (I have no quarrel with this fact; if he didn’t, others would. There is a real market here.) The employee so instructed normally provides the old man with lots of face among other rich old geezers because she is beautiful. She contributes to his image, he thinks. She may also sell him some affection. The old guy is 80. Who would bet she provides much more than affection? Part of the deal is that he is allowed to refer to her as his “girlfriend.” Nobody is fooled, I would think.
For my overseas readers,: I refer to the owner of the Los Angles Clippers, an average basketball team that is part of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The old man’s name is “Sterling.” The NBA official who punishes him is named “Silver.” Makes it sound like a family quarrel. And it would be if the press were doing its job. See below.
The media explodes in outrages when those few words are leaked. The manufactured scandal occupies the best part of a day of news plus some. Some African-Americans are permanently in a rage anyway (for reasons I understand, I think.) Other African-Americans find it expedient, political to be also in rage whether they feel any rage or not. What are the white liberal media figures – public friends of racial minorities all – supposed to do? Does anyone think they might have stated, “No big deal, boring,” and gone back to covering real news?
I, for one, am not outraged. I am bored. Why should I care about what instructions an employer gives one his employees who participates in this shaky image building? Why should I care when his own black employees, more than 2/3 black themselves don’t say a thing about the alleged verbal atrocity?
If I did care, what right would I have to do or even say anything? If they are offended, the man’s highly coveted black players and their offended white teammates can walk away, go on strike. Offended players on other teams can refuse to play with the Clippers. The paying public can boycott the team all it wants if it’s scandalized.
Instead, the Grand Poopah of the National Basketball Association – to which the Clippers belong – forbids the old man from attending his own team games forever and fines him 2.5 million dollars. Poopah Silver’s entourage makes loud public statements about forcing him to sell his team.
What is the Poopah going to do if the old man stands his grounds about the fine and flips him one? Does he have a private geriatric jail into which to throw the old man? It all sounds to me like a private confiscation of private property and a gangsterish restraint of trade. That’s a mafia-like action.
I hope the old man fights back and sues. I hope I am on the jury.
Yes, fascism is in the air. But it does not come from a rich old guy with a mind floating in another era and associated prejudices. We learn the next day that US GPD growth for the first quarter of 2014 is 1/10 of 1 %. That’s a French level. President Obama’s policies are all failing, domestic and foreign. The Democratic Party if facing congressional elections in the fall. Many Democrats are running scared. The party needs to draw attention to something else, to anything at all. The mass media are obliging as usual. Panem et circenses and the panem is stale.