Donald Sterling Thinks He Owns Basketball Players, But He Really DOES Own the NAACP

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Billionaire racists will be billionaire racists. Not much we can do about that. But the fact that our so-called civil rights organizations depend on the deep pockets of Wal-Mart, Comcast, and the David Sterlings of this world even though they pretend to represent the interests of ordinary black people is not something we have to live with.

Donald Sterling Thinks He Owns Basketball Players, But Really Does Own the NAACP

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

“Depending on the rich and powerful to pay their bills while pretending to speak for the poor and oppressed is not a mere bug in the way our 21st century civil rights organizations work ”

For us at Black Agenda Report, the most telling angle on the story of Donald Sterling, the racist billionaire owner of the LA Clippers, was that the Los Angeles NAACP , which had been about to give Sterling a second – not a first but a second “Lifetime Achievement Award” eagerly stepped forward to offer redemption and forgiveness for the small cost of a few more strategic donations from the deep pockets of Donald Sterling.

This won't be the first time Sterling has purchased absolution for his many sins. In 2003 Sterling settled a housing discrimination lawsuit paying $5 million to plaintiff attorneys alone, and in 2006 he was accused again of refusing to rent apartments to African Americans and Latinos. But a steady stream of donations to big-name so-called civil rights organizations amounting at most to a few ten thousandths of his net worth, were sufficient to make it OK in the eyes of those outfits, and in the case of the NAACP, they were sufficient to get him that first “lifetime award.”

Depending on the rich and powerful to pay their bills while pretending to speak for the poor and oppressed is not a mere bug in the way our 21st century civil rights organizations function, it is a fundamental feature, baked into the bones not just of the NAACP, but of the National Urban League, the League of United Latin American Citizens, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, the National Conference of Black State Legislators, the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, Al Sharpton's National Action Network and many others of this kind.

“There are examples like this in any direction one cares to look...”

In the practice of catching corporate racists with their pants down and extracting a franchise here, a dealership there, a TV show or hefty donations to worthy causes the hunter always gets captured by the game. In Georgia where I live, the Southern Christian Leadership Council got the CEO of Georgia Power to head up their building fund. Residents of Shell Bluff, a poor, mostly black town invited Rev. Joseph Lowery of SCLC to their town to show him their cancer epidemic, evidently caused by radiation from a leaking Georgia Power nuclear plant, while federal agencies refused to fund testing of their air, water, soil, wildlife or persons. Georgia Power is now building brand new nuclear plant next to the old ones with $800 million in loan guarantees from the Obama administration. But all that SCLC could do was tell them, “go vote.”

Wells Fargo had aggressively sold sub-prime mortgages to blacks, and is believed to have engaged in thousands or tens of thousands of the same kinds of robo-signings and illegal foreclosures that Bank of America pled guilty to. So after the bailout, Wells Fargo partnered with the NAACP to do “financial literacy” classes for youth. There are examples like this in any direction one cares to look.

Donald Sterling may imagine he owns basketball players. But he really does own the NAACP, just as surely as Verizon and Comcast, Aetna, Wal-Mart, MSNBC and others own the National Action Network, Rainbow-PUSH, the Urban League, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and the rest of our politically bankrupt black misleadership class. For Black Agenda Report, I'm Bruce Dixon. Find us on the web at

Bruce A. Dixon is managing editor at Black Agenda Report, and a member of the state committee of the Georgia Green Party. He lives and works in Marietta GA and can be reached at bruce.dixon(at) or via this site's contact page.



I should also have said....

that the NBA showed more concern for its image than the craven NAACP.  The NBA is directing that Sterling sell the franchise to somebody else -- really not a punishment at all, because he paid only $13 million put will get $800 million for it.

If the NAACP had that same concern for its own image it would put the Los Angeles chapter in receivership, something past national NAACP administrations have done quite often, repudiate its way of doing business, and appoint somebody with clean hands and an idea of how to fund operations without sucking up to racist billionaires.  

But of course the LA NAACP is doing what they all do, so the honchos at the national level cannot really fault the locals in LA, they are playing from the same script.  Oh well. 

Racist comments

While the MSM and LMS express outrage over the racist comments made by Sterling..why was there no outrage at the US President keeping his own personal kill list and taegeting American citizens for assassination?

The misleadershippers and

The misleadershippers and their white liberal partners in crime in the media only get incensed over politically incorrect words/deeds or if a black male gets shot by a white person.  Sterling could have offshored millions of jobs, poisoned food/water with pesticides and GMOs, personally funded Obomber's war in Libya, help gut public education and public sector jobs, etc., etc. and you would not have heard a word from the presstitute corps nor from the NAACP and the gang.   Both media and misleadershippers know their role in the empire - keep the sheeple ignorant and distracted - and their checks will continue to clear.  And it works.  Ask 10 people about any issue raised on this website and you'll be lucky to find 2 whose discussion of the matter includes something other than the propaganda and lies served up by the presstitute corps and the misleadership class. You'll be hard pressed to find many folks who haven't heard about Sterlinggate and even harder pressed to find more than a half handful who know the real dang deal about what's really going on locally or globally. 

A Bunch of Sell Outs

I always knew the NAACP, has never been an effective organization, serving in the best interest of African people.  The national office trying to hide behind a local office for giving a notorious racist a Life Time Achievment Award, then they turned around and made another attempt to give the same notorious racist another award, same kind.  I thought when you give one, (life time) that means forever, so why did they want to give him another one?  Maybe this is a misunderstanding on my part.  If I had anything to do with it, he wouldn't have gotten the first one.  I wish to say to the NAACP, and the rest of the black people, organizations, who dropped the ball, they failed to speak up, stand up, for an issue like this, in which black people were insulted, the basketball players treated like slaves.  We don't care if they want to be with us or not, and it goes both ways, but the mere fact, these black players are responsible for a great deal of his wealth, then he comes out and attack the players race.  Amazing, how these racist behave.  

The Real Face of the Present Day NAACP

SMH,  Another benchmark moment for the Black MisleadershipClass.  Everything I read about in E. Franklin Frazier's, The Black Bourgeoise.

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