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Clippers Owners in Hot Water for Racial Remarks

Aired April 28, 2014 - 19:00:00   ET


JOEY JACKSON, CO-HOST: Tonight, it`s the racial firestorm that`s gone from center court all the way to the White House. A pleasant good evening to you. I`m Joey Jackson.

SUNNY HOSTIN, CO-HOST: And I`m Sunny Hostin, and we`re filling in for our good friend, Jane Velez-Mitchell.

The owner of the L.A. Clippers, yes, you`ve heard of him. We`ve been talking about him all weekend. Apparently, he doesn`t want black people at his games. That`s right. That`s what we heard on audio recordings leaked to TMZ and attributed to Mr. Donald Sterling.


DONALD STERLING, OWNER OF L.A. CLIPPERS: Your entire (EXPLETIVE DELETED) life, your whole life admired him, bring him here, feed him, (EXPLETIVE DELETED) him. I don`t care.

MAGIC JOHNSON, NBA HALL OF FAMER: I think he should step down.

STERLING: Don`t come to my games. Don`t bring black people. Don`t come.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Entering the court for pre-game warm-ups, the unified statement from the Clipper players, wearing their warm-up shirts inside- out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We can`t have it from a player. We can`t have it from an owner.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: An attempt to turn back the clock on race relations.

STERLING: It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you`re associating with black people. Do you have to?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s absolutely no place in the NBA family for ignorance.

V. STIVIANO, STERLING`S GIRLFRIEND: People call you and tell you that I have black people on my Instagram and it bothers you.


JACKSON: The vile comments were made during an argument with Donald Sterling`s girlfriend, who describes herself as black and Mexican. And get this: 11 sponsors, including CarMax, Red Bull, State Farm and Virgin America, have already bailed. About but what should Donald Sterling`s punishment be?

HOSTIN: Well, the Clippers players staged a silent protest before their play-off game yesterday. They did play, but they tossed their team warm-up jackets at center court, revealing inside-out red T-shirts with no logos to be seen. That`s right. You couldn`t see the L.A. Clipper logo.

But get this. And this really just gets me. Nearly all the players on the Clippers` 14-man roster, guess what? They`re black. They`re African- American.

JACKSON: Sunny, let`s listen to a portion of the audiotape that was released by TMZ, where a man identified as Sterling references this Instagram photo of his girlfriend with NBA legend, Magic Johnson.


STERLING: I have nothing more to say.

STIVIANO: It`s a picture with someone I admire.


STIVIANO: And he happens to be black, and I`m sorry.

STERLING: I think it`s nice that you admire him. I know him well, and he should be admired. And I`m just saying that it`s too bad you can`t admire him privately.

And during your entire (EXPLETIVE DELETED) life, your whole life admire him, bring him, feed him, (EXPLETIVE DELETED) him, I don`t care. You can do anything. But don`t put him on Instagram for the world to see so they have to call me. And don`t bring him into my games, OK?


HOSTIN: Can you believe that? Well, guess what Magic had to say: "I`m happy to comply." That`s right. Magic won`t be at any Clippers games, period.

Now what should the NBA do with Mr. Donald Sterling? We want to hear from you. Call us at 1-877-JVM-SAYS. That`s 1-877-586-7297. You have got to weigh in on this.

JACKSON: Well, Sunny, as you might imagine, our Lion`s Den is ready to weigh in for sure, and the panel here is ready to debate. And I ask all of you, and I`m going to start with you, Jasmine Cannick. Is 80-year-old Donald Sterling, is that an aberration, or has he, along with George Zimmerman, Michael Dunn and Clive Bundy, exposed a hatred and fear of African-Americans that`s far more common than we`d like to think?

Now, Jasmine, good evening. Lion`s Den panel, good evening. But let me ask you, Jasmine. I know you`re staging a protest tomorrow. Tell us what it`s all about, what you expect to accomplish and what your thoughts are about this whole fiasco.

JASMINE CANNICK, SOCIAL AND POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: All right. First of all, I`ve got to say, I love my L.A. Clippers. And we definitely stand behind our team and our players.

Look, tomorrow is April 29. We`re getting ready to commemorate the 22nd anniversary of the civil unrest in this city. And it`s really, really sad that on the eve of that Donald Sterling`s comments had to come out. It just goes to show that we haven`t come that far.

What we want to make clear to the rest of the country, that Los Angeles does not feels like how Donald Sterling feels, and he does not represent the bulk of Angelinos. We are a very diverse city. We love our team. We love our players. He has got to go. We will be boycotting those games. And we`re going to let the world know that tomorrow.

JACKSON: Well-stated, Jasmine.

HOSTIN: Yes, I want to get to Zerlina. Because I`m really interested in this issue of age. Because so many people this weekend -- I think every family, African-American, family of color has been talking about this around their dinner table. What about his age? He`s 80 years old. Is he just some sort of weirdo crackpot? Is this just sort of a generational issue, or are these feelings that are held by a lot of people?

ZERLINA MAXWELL, POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think that there`s some truth that it is a generational issue. However, I give him no pass on this, whether he`s 80 or 8. I think that anyone living in the United States in 2014 needs to talk about black people or people of color in any context as if they are full human beings.

And what was most disturbing for me, regardless of his age, was that he talked about his team as if he was the new plantation owner in the NBA, who was profiting off of the labor of black people.

And there was -- there was a lot of ugliness in his comments here. And I think that we really need to focus on the fact that these things were said, not that they were recorded or by whom. And really, there needs to be consequences. Because he should not be in charge of black players if he feels this way.

JACKSON: And that`s the...

HOSTIN: You know what, Zerlina, I`ve got to disagree with you, because -- I`m sorry, Joey.


HOSTIN: Because you know, we`re saying it`s not a generational issue and - - or it could be a generational issue. He`s 80. But what about Michael Dunn? Michael Dunn`s my age. George Zimmerman in his 30s. So to say that it`s a generational issue, that seems kind of odd to me.

MAXWELL: Well, what I mean is that, certainly, he grew up in a different time. But that -- what I`m saying is that that is not an excuse for his remarks. I`m simply saying it`s a lame excuse. It`s a lame reason for why he`s talking this way. There are plenty of 80-year-olds, white 80-year- olds that do not have racist beliefs. I think that, you know, it`s just an excuse to use his age.

I was simply saying that perhaps people that are 80, who grew up during Jim Crow or a different era, may hold some of these beliefs still in 2014.

JACKSON: And Wendy Murphy -- just asking you this question...

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Can I just say -- can I just jump in for a second?

JACKSON: Absolutely. I want you to. But let me ask you, Wendy. It`s not about...

MURPHY: Because this is making me a little bit crazy. We are in 2014!

HOSTIN: That`s right.

MURPHY: And we have to debate this? We have to debate whether this guy should lose his job? We have to debate whether he deserves to be a bazillionaire? What year is -- what country do I live in?

Look, here`s what I made about the guy. Can you see this?

JACKSON: I see it very well.

MURPHY: He`s a freak! He`s a freak! This is what we all need to do. He is a freak!

And those Clippers -- let me tell you something. Not only should they be putting their outfits on inside-out. They should throw every game -- every game until he steps down.

JACKSON: Well, here`s the problem. The problem, Wendy, and I think everyone should be outraged. It`s not only African-American; it`s not only people of color. I think every one of good heart and mind would agree that this was abhorrent and outrageous.

However, Wendy, I take issue with this. The players have worked all their lives. They are gifted. They are talented. They are skilled. And because their bonehead owner says something that they don`t believe in, should what they have worked so hard for just be thrown away?

HOSTIN: Yes. And I`ve got to agree with you on that.

MURPHY: One game, Joey. Throw one game, and he`ll be gone. And they`ll have a new owner the next day. And then they`ll win all their games.

JACKSON: I just don`t think that happens.

HOSTIN: I don`t know that it`s that simple. But let`s listen to another portion of the audio from TMZ, because this is audio everyone really should listen to.

The person identified as Sterling suggests his relationship with his mistress may end, because, uh, they don`t see eye-to-eye on race. Who would have thought that, right? Well, we`re going to play large pieces of the conversation so no one says we`re taking anything out of context and you have the right context. Take a listen to this.


STIVIANO: Do you know that I`m mixed?

STERLING: No, I don`t know that.

STIVIANO: You know that I`m mixed.

STERLING: You told me you were going to remove this. You said, "Yes, I understand you." I mean, you change from day to day. Wow, so painful. Wow.

STIVIANO: People call you and tell you that I have black people on my Instagram and it bothers you.

STERLING: Yes, it bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you`re associating with black people. Do you have to?

STIVIANO: You associate with black people.

STERLING: I`m not you and you`re not me. You`re supposed to be a delicate white or a delicate Latino girl.

STIVIANO: I`m a mixed girl.

STERLING: OK, well...

STIVIANO: And you`re in love with me. And I`m black and Mexican, whether you like it or not. Whether the world accepts it or not. And you`re asking me to remove something that`s part of me and in my bloodstream, because the world thinks different of me and you`re afraid of what they`re going to think? Because of your upbringing? You want me to have hate towards black people?

STERLING: I don`t want you to have hate. That`s what people do. They turn things around. I want you to love them. Privately. In your whole life, every day you can be with them. Every single day of your life.

STIVIANO: But not in public?

STERLING: Why public -- publicize it on the Instagram and why bring it to my teams?

STIVIANO: Why bring the black people to the games? I...

STERLING: I don`t want to discuss it anymore. I don`t want to talk about it.

STIVIANO: I`m sorry that you feel that way.

STERLING: I feel that way so strongly. And it may cause our relationship to break apart. And if it does, it does. It`s better to break apart now than to break apart later.

STIVIANO: I`m sorry you still have people around you that are full of racism and hate in their heart. I`m sorry that you`re still racist in your heart. I`m sorry you live in a world that`s still...

STERLING: How about -- how about your whole life, every day, you could do whatever you want. You could sleep with them, you could bring them in, you could do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on - - and not to bring him to my games.


HOSTIN: Did you hear that? Don`t bring black people to my games. But the irony here is that more than 70 percent of NBA players are, I don`t know, black! Sterling`s highest-paid employees are black! This must be one hell of a tense front office, don`t you think?

JACKSON: You think?

HOSTIN: I mean, was Sterling able -- my question, was Sterling able to interact normally with players and coaches on a day-to-day basis? I mean, I really want to bring in Xavier here. You know, what do you make of this?

XAVIER JERNIGAN, SOCIAL COMMENTATOR: One -- No. 1, thanks for having me on. I do not want to give him a pass for the age -- you know, his age and his -- the generation he`s from. He`s a flat-out racist. He has a well- documented history of racist and discriminatory practices in his housing business, where he called, on record, Mexicans and blacks -- he said that they stunk up his buildings. He didn`t want them living in his buildings.

NBA legend Elgin Baylor, who was a general manager for the Clippers, he even has a lawsuit out about racial discrimination, and he worked for the Clippers for 20 years.

So this is a guy who just is a flat-out racist, and only thing with age I would say is he sounds like an insecure old man that has a hot young girlfriend, because he has so much money, and he`s just afraid of losing her. And then all those things bubble up to the surface, and boil over, and then he ends up saying really ridiculous things.

But I`m glad it came to light. I was not saddened by it. A lot of us know that there are a lot of people out there that have these practices and these feelings that they institute on us in business. And I`m glad it came to light on the NBA`s biggest stage, which is the first round of the playoffs, which has been great so far. So I`m glad it came to light right now, because we cannot sweep this under the rug anymore.

JACKSON: We absolutely can`t, Xavier.

JERNIGAN: We knew this guy was like this.

JACKSON: We absolutely can`t. So this is the first round of the playoffs. We have many more rounds here, so stay tuned; Lion`s Den, more of them, more of Sunny Hostin when we come back.


JOHNSON: If you come to me and say, `Hey, look, I`m a racist or I don`t -- I discriminate against blacks or I don`t like you because you are African," I respect that. I can respect you more by doing that. But don`t smile in my face, shake my hand and then you don`t really respect me or want me to be around or come to your games, as the owner of the Clippers.



STERLING: You`re associating with black people. Do you have to?

And I`m just saying that it`s too bad you can`t admire him privately. And during your entire (EXPLETIVE DELETED) life, your whole life admire him. Bring him here, feed him, (EXPLETIVE DELETED) him, I don`t care. You can do anything. But don`t put him on Instagram for the rest of the world to see so they have to call me. And don`t bring him to my games, OK?


HOSTIN: Welcome back. And thanks so much for joining us. We are talking about, of course, the L.A. Clippers` owner, Donald Sterling, and his alleged racist comments. Everyone is outraged about this. But my question is -- and I want to direct this to J. Wyndal Gordon. Thanks so much for joining us. What should...

J. WYNDAL GORDON, ATTORNEY: Thank you for having me.

HOSTIN: Thanks. What should the penalty be? Because I think it`s a little unclear as to what exactly one can do to this franchise owner.

GORDON: Well, I think that what they should do is force him to sell his shares to the Clippers.

Secondly, I also think that the players immediately upon this season being over should be able to register and become free agents so they don`t have to play for this man.

I mean, this man is a disgrace to the NBA. He`s a disgrace to everyone who believes in equality and who enjoys good basketball and great talent on the floor.

So with that said, I really think first things first, is that they should force him to sell. And this -- there is some precedent for this. Marge Schott -- I don`t know if people remember, maybe five or 15, maybe 20 years so, Marge Schott said some very ugly comments about some of her players, and she was forced to sell. This case -- so there`s precedent for it. This case should be treated no differently. And I`m really upset that the NBA hasn`t come out and taken a stronger stand on this. At least to condemn the conduct that...

HOSTIN: That`s a good point.

GORDON: ... that we find so contemptible.

HOSTIN: That`s a good point.

GORDON: I mean, we`re letting the NBA off the hook, but they`re all sitting around. They`ve been quiet. You have sponsors who have spoken up. You have all kinds of people in the community who have spoken up. The players did the best they could under the circumstances. But where is the NBA?

MURPHY: Yes, Joey.



MURPHY: I`ll tell you where they are, Sunny. Sunny, let me just say one quick thing.

This is what`s ugly about the United States of America. Racism is important. It`s very important. And frankly, I often have fights with people who say racism is more important than sexism. I don`t agree with that.

But you know what`s more important than both? Money! That`s right, money. And if the NBA gave more of a damn about racism than money...

GORDON: Well, that`s true. Right. But now the NBA is trashing the black guys.

HOSTIN: I think that`s -- that`s a great question. But Joey -- Joey and I were talking about this. And I said the same thing. Where has the NBA been?


HOSTIN: I mean, we`ve been all talking about this for several days. Now they`re saying they`re possibly going to make this statement tomorrow. But Joey, what do you think? I heard that you think they`re -- that it`s OK that they`re taking this long.

JACKSON: Rumor and innuendos, Sunny. What did I teach you about that?

Look, here`s the reality. As a defense attorney, what you want is due process. I represent bad people every day. And once they`re adjudicated to be bad, have your way with them, punish them as they should. But the NBA has an obligation to have a full, thorough and fair investigation. Once that occurs -- hold on, J. Wyndal, I hear you.


JACKSON: Once that occurs, I`m for swift justice. I`m for justice that`s appropriate, that`s right and that is measured.

MURPHY: Are you kidding me, Joey?

JACKSON: Hold everything! Hold the brakes! Hold the brakes. Let me finish my thought. So when -- hold on, J. Wyndal. Let me -- tear me up in just a second.

GORDON: No, I`m not going to tear you up.

JACKSON: But here`s the reality.


JACKSON: Once it occurs -- Sunny will. Once it occurs and it`s found that that tape is authentic, that it hasn`t been doctored, that it hasn`t been manipulated...

MURPHY: Come on, Joey.

JACKSON: ... hasn`t been altered, then you get him, and that`s when he should be banned from existence.

HOSTIN: Joey -- Joey, he hasn`t come out and said it`s not me.


HOSTIN: So let`s point that out.

GORDON: But not only that. I mean, it has been intellectually dishonest to try to lead people to believe that that is allegedly Mr. Sterling and that they need to conduct a full investigation.

JACKSON: I don`t know him. I don`t know him. I haven`t heard his voice.

GORDON: But there are enough players who know him. There are enough individuals who can vouch for his voice, who can authenticate and say, "Yes, I`ve spoken to Mr. Sterling many times on the telephone. That`s his voice."

HOSTIN: That`s right.

JACKSON: And so if by tomorrow...

HOSTIN: Jasmine.

CANNICK: I would like to jump in here and say this.


CANNICK: Let me say this.

GORDON: The NBA needs to do something.

HOSTIN: Go ahead, Jasmine.

CANNICK: When a black NBA player says anything remotely racist or homophobic, there is no due process.

GORDON: Right.

MAXWELL: Absolutely.

MURPHY: I want to jump in.

HOSTIN: Let Jasmine finish.


CANNICK: And so we expect nothing less with an owner of a team.

GORDON: Even more so.

CANNICK: You should treat the owner the same way you treat the players.

JACKSON: Agreed.

CANNICK: When the players say something and it has not even been verified, they are vilified in the media, especially if it`s anti-gay.

JACKSON: Oh, and he`s being vilified and he should be vilified.

CANNICK: Because it was anti-black.

JACKSON: Absolutely.

CANNICK: Because he was anti-black, we have to give him due process? And we have to investigate it? No!

JACKSON: Bottom line...

GORDON: This is an administrative hearing, and the process that`s due is not much at all.

MAXWELL: Can I jump in now?

HOSTIN: Yes, yes, please jump in.

MAXWELL: I want to jump in and point out, again, to reiterate the point that we`re not in a court of law and so the burden of proof, in order to make sure that he said this, I mean, if somebody said tomorrow TMZ found a tape of me ranting about, you know, racist things about white people, I would say it`s not me, because I don`t talk like that.

And so the fact that he hasn`t even come out at this point and said, "That could never be me, because I don`t talk that way" is also pretty alarming.

And I think again, to reiterate what`s been said before, he needs to be removed from his position. Whether it`s a suspension until they can find out what to do or whether or not they force him out as owner. But they need to hold him accountable, because this sets a horrible precedent. The entire league is black.

MURPHY: I have another suggestion.

JACKSON: Go ahead, Wendy.

HOSTIN: Go ahead, Wendy. Go ahead, Wendy.

MURPHY: I`d like to volunteer to represent all the players for free in filing a civil rights lawsuit against him tomorrow. Because I`m concerned that with a mind-set like that -- and there are rumors -- I don`t know if they`re true -- I don`t really follow basketball, but that he pays them less than what other players get paid for playing a similar quality of ball. I`d love to represent them for free and sue the guy for racist discrimination.

HOSTIN: Well, if they`re watching.

JACKSON: And if that`s true, Wendy -- and if that`s true, Wendy, he needs to be held accountable, and he will be held accountable. And the NBA, after they reach their investigation, I`m sure, will do the right thing and ban him from oblivion.


JACKSON: And we`re going to talk more. And we`re going to talk more with my good friend, Sunny, holding me to task. And the great Lion`s Den panel when we return.


KAREEN ABDUL JABBAR, NBA HALL OF FAMER: Mr. Sterling`s actions have been consistent. He doesn`t really respect black people. It`s OK if they make him money. Apparently, it was OK for him to be involved romantically with this young lady. But other than that, he has contempt for black people. But that is the exact epitome of what the plantation mentality is all about.




STIVIANO: I`m a mixed girl.


STIVIANO: And you`re in love with me. And I`m black and Mexican. Whether you like it or not.

STERLING: You can`t be flexible. You can`t...

STIVIANO: I am flexible. I understand that that`s the way you were raised and that`s your culture. And I`m...

STERLING: Well, why do you have to disrespect them? Those are...

STIVIANO: Who am I disrespecting?

STERLING: The world before you.

STIVIANO: Why am I disrespecting them?

STERLING: Well, by walking -- you`re perceived as either a Latina or white girl.


HOSTIN: Welcome back. And thanks so much for staying with us.

We have with us Arnie, who -- Arnie Spanier, who is a sports talk show host.

And this is a question, Arnie, that has been bugging me. Of we really don`t know what we can see happen to this Donald Sterling, because the contract between the NBA and these franchise owners is some sort of secret pact. Why is that?

ARNIE SPANIER, SPORTS TALK SHOW HOST: Well, it`s the good ole boys` club. We know that.

But you know really what kills me about this whole thing? Everybody screaming why hasn`t the NBA done something? The information came down Saturday and Sunday. They`re taking today to look this over.

We knew that Donald Sterling has been a slumlord for, like, 30 years, and we did nothing about it. Why don`t we look in the mirror and say why didn`t we do something about it for the last 30 years? Why did we sit on our butt when he dropped "N" bombs, talked about Hispanics, talked about Jews, talked about everybody? We did nothing for 30 years, but all of a sudden now let`s get this done by tomorrow.

I want to know what we`re going to do, what the fans are going to do, what the players are going to do, what the other owners are going to do, what the new commissioner is going to do. It`s time for us to get up off our butts, and now we go ahead and show in force that this won`t be tolerated anymore.


JACKSON: Sunny, that -- you know, Arnie raises a good point, Sunny. Right?


JACKSON: Because we can argue about, you know, due process or anything else. But as Arnie said, if this has been existing for so long, right, I mean, why now are we doing something? Did the NBA turn a blind eye to this?

HOSTIN: You`re right, Joey. You`re right.

JACKSON: It just -- it boggles the imagination. And should he even have been allowed to be an owner?

JERNIGAN: No, he shouldn`t.

HOSTIN: That`s true.

JACKSON: And why don`t we get Zerlina Maxwell. Zerlina Maxwell, weigh in on this whole thing. And I think Arnie sets off the firestorm, you know. This guy has a long history.

MAXWELL: Absolutely. And I think that absolutely not, he should not be owning a team. Because, again, going back to right before we went to the break, the plantation mentality.

And in the same audio clip, he`s talking about the fact that he gives his players houses and cars. Gives. Not that they earn it through their labor, but that he`s giving it to them. And so he`s completely wrong in the mentality that he has towards his athletes and his employees, really.

And so I think that, yes, he needs to resign or be suspended by the NBA. Because he has no place -- his comments have no place in the American discourse. And he has no place being owner of a team of black players. That is a new plantation...

JACKSON: Or any players.

MAXWELL: ... and the NBA does not want that at all.

JACKSON: Any players.

MAXWELL: Or any player.

HOSTIN: Jasmine.

JACKSON: Go ahead, Jasmine.

CANNICK: Los Angeles is no stranger to Donald Sterling. Like, he has been a major slumlord for years. He has been sued by tenants` rights groups. He has made it clear that he didn`t want African-Americans and Latinos living in his buildings. So we`re not surprised in Los Angeles about what he said.

We`re happy that the rest of the world now knows who the real Donald Sterling is. And we`re going to bring it tomorrow.

MAXWELL: Yes, but Jasmine -- Jasmine, I`m sorry, I`m sorry, but the NAACP gave him a lifetime achievement award. And they were about to...

CANNICK: I don`t have to apologize for that. I`m not a member of the NAACP.

HOSTIN: Wait, wait, wait, Jasmine. This was the L.A. chapter. So you just said that, you know, everyone in L.A. is so happy that everyone knows about this now. Didn`t the NAACP know about this before they gave him an award for lifetime achievement?


JACKSON: Well stated.

CANNICK: The NAACP in Los Angeles does not represent all of us in Los Angeles. We were just as upset when we found out they were giving him an award again, because this would have been...

HOSTIN: Again.

CANNICK: ... his second award, OK? You know, the African-Americans in Los Angeles have made their voices very heard on that subject. And today they rescinded that award. We are not going for that.

HOSTIN: Shame on the L.A. NAACP.

JACKSON: Jasmine, I can`t wait to see your protest tomorrow.

MURPHY: We gave them money, and that is shameful.

JERNIGAN: Exactly. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) the award.

JACKSON: We`ve got to go to break. But I would consider coming, but I`m in New York. You`re in L.A., you know? It`s a distance. But my heart is with you; my spirit is with you.

HOSTIN: Come on, Joey. We can do it. We can take a trip.

JACKSON: We can -- road trip to L.A.

Listen, more on this very non-fiery, right, non-temperamental debate coming up -- soon.


DOC RIVERS, HEAD COACH, L.A. CLIPPERS: We had a great team meeting this morning about it. A lot of guys voiced their opinions. None of them were happy about it. This is a situation where we`re trying to go after something very important for us -- something that we have all dreamed about, all our childhoods. And Donald or anyone else had nothing to do with that dream. And we`re not going to let anything get in the way of those dreams.




DONALD STERLING, OWNER, L.A. CLIPPERS: And during your entire (EXPLETIVE DELETED) life, your whole life admired him, bring him, feed him, (EXPLETIVE DELETED) him, I don`t care.

MAGIC JOHNSON, FORMER NBA PLAYER: I think he should step down.

STERLING: Don`t come to my games. Don`t bring black people and don`t come.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: While entering the court for pregame warm-ups, the unified statement from the Clipper players, wearing their warm-up shirts inside-out.

LEBRON JAMES, MIAMI HEAT: We can`t have it from a player, can`t have it from an owner.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s an attempt to turn back the clock on race relations.

STERLING: Yes, it bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you`re associating with black people. Do you have to?

MAYOR KEVIN JOHNSON, SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA: There`s absolutely no place in the NBA family for ignorance.


JACKSON: Welcome back. I`m Joey Jackson.

HOSTIN: And I`m Sunny Hostin, filling in for our good friend, Jane Velez- Mitchell.

Let`s listen to another portion of the audiotape because you really have to listen to it, reportedly from Clippers` owner, Donald Sterling. In this clip you`re going to hear him call his girlfriend "stupid". That`s right, she`s stupid for not understanding how race relations work in America.



STERLING: I`m sorry too.

STIVIANO: I wish I could change the skin, the color of my skin.

STERLING: That isn`t the issue. You missed the issue.

STIVIANO: What`s the issue?

STERLING: The issue is we don`t have to broadcast it.

STIVIANO: I`m not broadcasting anything. I don`t do anything wrong.

STERLING: Nobody said you did anything wrong.

STIVIANO: I don`t do anything wrong. If we ever have any issues, because people call you and tell you things about me that are not true.

STERLING: Then why are you broadcasting?

STIVIANO: I`m not broadcasting anything.

STERLING: Why are you taking pictures with minorities? Why?

STIVIANO: What`s wrong with minorities? What`s wrong with black people?

STERLING: Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

STIVIANO: What`s wrong with Hispanics.

STERLING: It`s like talking to an enemy. There`s nothing wrong with minorities. They`re fabulous. Fabulous. Because you`re an enemy to me.


STERLING: Because you don`t understand.

STIVIANO: I don`t understand what?

STERLING: Nothing. Nothing.

STIVIANO: That racism still is alive?

STERLING: No, but there is a culture.

STIVIANO: What culture.

STERLING: People feel certain things. Hispanics feel certain things towards blacks. Blacks feel certain things towards other groups. It`s been that way historically. And it will always be that way.

STIVIANO: But it`s not that way in my heart and in my mind.

STERLING: But maybe you want to adjust to the world.

STIVIANO: But why? The world doesn`t do anything for me and they don`t make me happy.

STERLING: You`re right. I don`t want to argue with you. I don`t want to argue.

STIVIANO: I can`t have racism in my heart.

STERLING: That`s good. I`m living in a culture. And I have to live within the culture. So that`s the way it is. That`s all, I`ve got it. I got the whole message. You live with your heart.

STIVIANO: I don`t -- you`re --

STERLING: You can`t be flexible. You can --

STIVIANO: I am flexible. I understand that that`s the way you were raised and that`s your culture and I`m respectful --

STERLING: Why do you have to disrespect them?

STIVIANO: Who am I disrespecting?

STERLING: The world before you.

STIVIANO: Why am I disrespecting them?

STERLING: By walking -- you are perceived as either a Latina or a white girl. Why can`t you be walking publicly with black people? Why? Is there a benefit to you?

STIVIANO: Is it a benefit to me? Does it matter if they`re white or blue or yellow?

STERLING: I guess that you don`t know that. Maybe you`re stupid. Maybe you don`t know what people think of you. It does matter, yes. It matters.


JACKSON: Sunny, are my ears deceiving me? I mean, did I hear the horrifying remarks that he just made? It`s outrageous.


JACKSON: You know, Arnie Spanier, let me ask you this question. Absolutely, it`s unbelievable. But Arnie Spanier, let me go to you, all right? Let me just think about this. He`s 80 years old. Could this just be an age issue or is this something that`s a lot larger than that? What is he thinking?

ARNIE SPANIER, SPORTS RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: You know, you`ve got to stop saying this is an age issue because when say that and then when you bring up Zimmerman and fear of black people and what to do, you`re coming up with just an excuse here. This guy, it`s not an age issue, because I`m sitting here in front of me and there is a piece of paper, 1983. When he was talking to Rolly Massimino to be head coach of the Clippers, he said "I want to know why you think you can coach these "n" words." Can you believe that? That was 30 years ago. He wasn`t an old man 30 years ago.

How about when he said, "I don`t like Mexicans, because they smoke, drink and hang around the house." Again -- 20 years ago. He wasn`t an old man 20 years ago. Stop making that excuse for him, guys.

JACKSON: I can`t argue with you, Arnie. I cannot argue with you on this one.

HOSTIN: And Arnie, if you are right, that was such a good point, you know. And you hear him say things on the tape. People feel certain things, historically. And he also says it will always be that way.

So I want to bring in Eunique Jones Gibson, because I think you`ve got to broaden the conversation. Because if, in fact, it`s not a generational issue, right. It`s not an age issue. It`s not because he`s 80 years old. Then is it that in our society somehow there is this pervasive fear of the black person? Is that what it is? And if so, what do we do about it?

EUNIQUE JONES GIBSON, CULTURAL EXPERT: Well, first of all, it isn`t an age issue, it`s an ignorance issue and when we talk about the fear, absolutely. Because this is the same fear that allows men to hunt young boys because of the way they look or because of the type of music that they listen to.

And so here we have the great opportunity to teach, to advocate for change. These types of conversations happen in rooms that we`re not always privy to. And the fact that the world is now hearing Sterling`s comments and the way he feels, it is also the way that other people feel about African- Americans.

JACKSON: Love them privately. That`s amazing that he would say that.

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Can I jump in here? Can I say one thing about --

HOSTON: Yes. Go ahead, Wendy.

MURPHY: -- what we`re not talking about that we need to admit is also true. That woman, a black woman, is living with and boffing that creep, ok? What the hell is going on with her --

HOSTIN: But does that matter, Wendy?

MURPHY: -- that she thinks it`s acceptable -- what?

HOSTIN: Does that matter? Because I`ve been hearing that narrative over and over again, sort of taking the focus away from Sterling --

MURPHY: Here`s why it matters, Sunny.


HOSTIN: -- and placing it on her.

MURPHY: No, it`s not her fault that he`s a racist. But here`s why it matters. Because he is so vile and she is saying, I love you. You love me. How is it possible for anybody in America, black or white, to make sense of love between people like that? A black woman finding the capacity to be intimate and loving and spending her life with a guy who is saying blacks are not good enough for him. What the hell?

F2: Let me --

HOSTIN: Wait, wait, wait, everyone. Our viewers -- our viewers want to weigh in. Our phone lines are blowing up. We`ve got Bob from Pennsylvania. Bob, please weigh in. What`s our question or comment?

BOB, PENNSYLVANIA: Yes, my question is this. Do you think he could get fired or terminated? Do you think they could give him a fine for doing this too? Get a fine for what he -- for racism?

JACKSON: Well, Bob, the issue is this. He could get a fine by the NBA, but we`re talking about a billionaire so what a fine just for him, Bob, the cost of doing business. There has to be more. There has to be something he feels, like his team taking it away, suspending him, divesting him.

GORDON: I don`t think a suspension is good enough either. I think he needs to lose the team altogether. He has demonstrated that he can`t handle the responsibility or the way -- understand his impact upon the public. So he doesn`t deserve the team.

JACKSON: I would agree with that -- Sunny.


HOSTIN: I think we -- Joey, don`t you think we need to bring Arnie in? Because we have been talking about this over and over again -- what is the penalty? What can be done? I agree with you, Joey, a fine, so what, he`s got a gazillion dollars.

But what about a suspension? Can he be suspended for let`s say 20 years? He`s 80 years old, which means it`s a life sentence. So he`s out of the league. What about that, Arnie?

SPANIER: Well, you know, one thing you`ve got to be careful what you wish for. First of all, I think the most they can fine him is $1 million. You can find that in his cushion so that`s not going to do anything. But if he`s forced to give up the day-to-day operations, watch out if he doesn`t pull a fast one and switch it over to his wife because his wife has not done anything wrong. She is supposedly not the racist. If he switches it over to her, I`m still going to be sick about it, because then he`s not the day-to-day owner and he`s not in charge. I want it gone from the whole family, completely.

JACKSON: But he would still be controlling things.

HOSTIN: That`s a great point. What are we going to do about this, Joey Jackson?

JACKSON: We`ve got to do something and we have to do something. Do I have to admit this, Sunny? Swiftly.

HOSTIN: That`s right, that`s right. Stay with us. We`ll be right back.


CHARLES BARKLEY, NBA ANALYST: The NBA has to address it, because it`s really not fair to the L.A. Clippers. Just because their owner is an idiot, it really has nothing to do with the players. The players are going to feel, obviously, the ramifications and that`s what`s happening.




RIVERS: They didn`t sign on for this, but they`re part of this. And they`re upset at this. But they`re going to hang in there. And so are we. I can tell you that as a group and as a team.

You know, what I said yesterday after the game, I meant. I had to do a better job with our guys and try to get them back. And, you know, from our fan standpoint, being here over the last, you know, ten hours since I`ve landed, they have been amazing. You know, we need them. I can tell you that. We need unbelievable support right now from other people. And we`re hoping we get that tomorrow.


JACKSON: That was, of course, Clippers` head coach, Doc Rivers earlier today. And, you know, I want to go to the "Lion`s Den, Sunny, because I want to talk about something. And specifically I want to go to Eunique Jones-Gibson on this.

I want to ask the question. A lot of the focus, of course, has been shifted, right, depending upon whose camp you`re on, to the girlfriend. Is she a money-grabber? Is she a gold-digger? Is she this person who is this unsavory individual? And Eunique, the question I pose you is, should that matter? I mean she didn`t make these statements, did she?

JONES-GIBSON: She didn`t make the statement. And I think that`s a copout and it`s a way to deflect attention from the real issue. At the end of the day, the comments were made by Sterling. She brought them to the forefront, or a conversation between both him and her. And so I really don`t think that her character or her motives in dating Sterling are any of our business.

At the end of the day, the issue is Sterling, his racist remarks, and the fact that something needs to be done ASAP to ensure that he doesn`t do anything else damaging to those within the NBA or outside.

JACKSON: You know, Eunique, I have to agree with you.

MURPHY: I don`t agree with that. I don`t agree with that.

JACKSON: Go ahead, Wendy.

MURPHY: I think if she -- if she is extorting him and this was done to cause harm because she wants money or she is trying to deflect the lawsuit that his wife has brought against her, that is relevant.

JACKSON: Hold on. Hold on.


HOSTIN: That`s ridiculous, Wendy.

MURPHY: (inaudible) him as a racist. I didn`t say it affects our feelings about him as a racist. But it`s relevant.

JACKSON: How is it relevant?

HOSTIN: How is it relevant?


MURPHY: It`s wrong. Because extortion is wrong just as racism is wrong. You don`t cancel out her being an extortionist if that`s true.

XAVIER JERNIGAN, SOCIAL COMMENTATOR: But that`s not the story right now. The story right now is that an owner of an NBA --

MURPHY: I said if it`s true.

JERNIGAN: -- the story right now is that the owner of an NBA franchise got caught red-handed, making racist remarks. And he has a history of racial discrimination in his business practices. Women are always put on trial.

MURPHY: You know what else?

JERNIGAN: As soon as they raise any issue with something their man does.

F2: Her motives are relevant.

HOSTIN: let`s hear what Xavier is saying because Xavier you`re saying -- what are you saying. You`re saying that women are always sort of --

JERNIGAN: Every time a woman makes -- every time a woman makes an accusation, the first thing that we as a society do, that`s basically run by men, is put the woman on trial.

JACKSON: Attack, attack.

JERNIGAN: I don`t know what her motives are, I don`t know, and I`m not going to speak for that. And I can`t speak to that. But the issue right now is that Donald Sterling, a racist, got caught red-handed. It is only an issue now because we have proof and evidence. I am glad.

I don`t know what her motivations are but me, I am personally glad that it is out on the forefront so we can deal with this and get him out of the league.


JACKSON: Can I have some order in the court?

GORDON: I think her statements are relevant. I think her statements are relevant.

MURPHY: Judge Jackson --

HOSTIN: Go ahead, please.

JACKSON: Take it J. Wyndal -- go ahead.

MURPHY: Judge Jackson`s question was, does it matter?

GORDON: I agree with counsel, but not for the same reason. I do think her statements are relevant. They`re relevant because it shows that she had a relationship with him because it could be an issue as to whether or not the properties were a gift to her. And you heard the conversation.

You heard them talking about taking trips to this place and that place. It might be an issue as to whether or not she truly embezzled the money or whether or not they`re gifts. You can clearly see --

JACKSON: But J. Wyndal --

GORDON: -- that they had a solid relationship. And the tapes certainly show this relationship was more than just some platonic grandfather, granddaughter relationship.

JACKSON: Who cares?

GORDON: That it was a romantic relationship.

JACKSON: Who cares? J. Wyndal -- if we can blow up for one moment, may I, may I -- who cares at the end of the day, J. Wyndal, what the nature of the relationship was? He is a racist. He showed it on the tape. Should we forgive that fact because she`s a bad person?

HOSTIN: No, we shouldn`t.

JACKSON: It is inappropriate, uncalled for, and action needs to be taken now. We`re coming back.

HOSTIN: Well said, my friend.


NORM NIXON, FORMER NBA PLAYER: He has to go. I don`t think he can no longer be an owner in this league with those kind of views and opinions. I don`t think players want to play for him, you see sponsors pulling back. This is a black eye, not only for the Clippers but the entire NBA.



HOSTIN: Thank you so much for staying with us. This is my opportunity at this point to give my final thoughts on this topic -- this hot topic -- that we`ve all been talking about all across the country.

I`ve been talking about it with my family, with my kids, around my kitchen table. My friends have been doing the same. I am saddened that I have to talk about it, but I am thrilled that we are actually discussing it. I think our justice, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor said it the best in her dissent to the affirmative action gutting by our Supreme Court.

She said race matters. We have to start talking about it. We have to keep on talking about it. I am sick -- I`m sick to my soul that it still exists but the only way we can stop it is by calling people like Donald Sterling, penalizing him, I think he should be penalized to be forced to sell his team, and he certainly at the very least needs to be suspended for the next 20 years from the league. There`s no place for him in our society.

JACKSON: Sunny, I have to agree with you -- indeed, I do. The reality is this. What he said was disgusting. It was abhorrent. And I am horrified at this day and age you would have a person who would engage in such race baiting and say the vile things that he did, especially when he built his fortunes on the backs of those African-Americans that he now abhors.

And so the reality is that we are engaging in the discussion, we appreciated all the points of view, but the reality is he must go.

With that said, I say thank you so much for joining us. It was our pleasure to be with you.

Nancy Grace is up next.