LIONEL PODCAST: America, As To Wizened Racist Coots, Just Say “So What?”

The worst vetting since TSA employment screens. The NAACP and anyone with two neutrons to rub together and a modem could and should have known of Sterling’s past as in what he’s said, thought, done, name it. Google the Donald and read for yourself. It’s a bill of particulars, an indictment of everything Archie Bunker spouted and spewed for years. Where’s everybody been? Too busy counting the money gramps was shelling out. Then there’s Leon Jenkins, who likewise bowed out of his NAACP leadership position as it planned to honor the Grand Cyclops with another award during its centenary, he has his own questionable past to deal with which likewise escaped the exacting vetting standards of the organization’s filter. It seems that as long as DS was making contributions to the organization to the tune of $45K, all was hunky dory.

It wasn’t until the visored vixen, V. Stiviano, whose nom de scheiße sounds like a sugar substitute, illegally and surreptitiously intercepted the codger’s THOUGHTS! and BELIEFS! and released them (notwithstanding her cockamamie story of turning the gotcha recordings over to someone who later released it) that Jenkins and the NAACP had to refuse Methuselah’s dough. Such hypocrisy!

If you can’t see through this menagerie of unmitigated bullshit, you need immediate medical intervention. The fact that this was played as a statement against intolerance and racial harmony is not a joke, but a bad joke. As has been said, this is revenge porn, plain and simple. She taught him a lesson and now the NBA is attempting to wrest control of his team from him. And that will be stretched and continued and prolonged like you can’t believe. This old fool’s not about to turn over his team without a fight. And there should be a fight. Remember, this is a man who’s evinced racial animus on more than one well-documented occasion and the league sought not his dispossession and forfeiture. No, that didn’t occur until visor lady set him up. What utter crap!

If you’re offended, so what? Now here’s a novel idea. When you hear something that’s offensive for whatever reason, just repeat these words: So what? As in big deal. Big whoop. Or the more profane: Tough shite. It’s a stupid world with stupid people who say stupid things and you’re being offended means nothing. Absolutely nothing. That’s the contract you make when you agree to exist in a world and in a country with freedom of expression and the First Amendment as cornerstones. Keeping in mind that the First Amendment proscribes governmental infringement of your speech, not hypocritical sports leagues or public opinion. Got it? We understand that. But sadly, Americans have forgotten that pesky little provision and are laboring under the delusion that the First Amendment protects Sterling. No, he’s already protected. No government action is being directed or threatened at or towards Sterling. But the Commish ain’t the government.

But the real shock to many is this: Sterling can say anything he wants. Without exception. There’s nothing against any law that proscribes saying anything hateful against anyone or any demographic. And excluding the universally known and accepted and excepted no-no’s, sky’s the limit. Epithets, vile generalizations about race and gender, homophobic slurs . . . the price of freedom. The tab for the First Amendment. Payable in full. But when words traverse the firewall and turn into action, all bets are off.

And a word to the wise. Be very careful if you establish the Sterling precedent. Because here’s what’s going to happen. Someone high up the sports ownership food chain will make an off-the-cuff statement or joke about LGBTs and it will be construed as homophobic. It will invariably be recorded and disseminated. As gay players become more and more a part of sports franchises, as strides are made anent inclusion, homophobic remarks and jibes will not be tolerated and will be the subject of strict scrutiny. The Sterling precedent will be invoked and the declarant will be forced and ordered to sell his team and abandon control.

That’s not good, Sparky. No matter how vile a statement is, absent contemporaneous acts indicating racial or minority status animus, words mean nothing. And remember the refrain. So what? Who determines what can be said against whom? Are Alsatians protected? Inuits? And if not, then why not? Terrorists? Sure. Jihadists? You betcha. Muffins? Nope. Gays? Uh uh. What if you reference the Bible as the directive and source of your animus? Iffy. Can you see this sliding scale of protected classes? I can’t tell you where the list of the hands off is nor can anyone else. But be wary and chary. Watch what you say. You could lose a basketball team for saying something stupid.

I hate hate crimes. Correction: I loathe them. And I loathe the fact that so many people miss the point. That speech is being penalized. That crimes are elevated in severity based on what ideas or thoughts are uttered contemporaneously with the behavior. A behavior that’s already a crime! The parallels to hate crime legislation cannot be missed: The elevation and aggravation of criminal behavior, already cognizable at law, by virtue of constitutionally protected speech. It’s breathtaking.

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