Monday, April 28, 2014
Usually the intersection between land use law and sports comes in the siting of sports arenas. But, today I happened across an article in The Guardian about the LA Clippers/Donald Sterling racism scandal that takes issue with the NBA's non-action, for years, on his racism in his business practices:
But all those years, not enough people looked at Donald Sterling as the racist landlord the law so bore him out to be.
Neither the league, nor the players, nor the sports media paid much if any attention to Sterling's agreement in 2003 to pay upwards of $5m to settle a lawsuit brought by the Housing Rights Center charging that he tried to drive non-Korean tenants out of apartments he bought in the Koreatown section of Los Angeles. Only a few observers noted in 2006 that the Justice Department sued Sterling for allegations of housing discrimination in the same neighborhood. The charges included statements he allegedly made to employees that black and Hispanic families were not desirable tenants.
And while a handful of us in the media excoriated Sterling and the NBA in 2009 when Sterling settled the lawsuit by agreeing to pay $2.73m following allegations he refused to rent apartments to Hispanics, blacks and families with children, the story didn't resonate – despite it being the largest housing discrimination settlement in Justice Department history.
Read the entire article, "The real tragedy of Donald Sterling's racism: it took this long for us to notice," here.
Jamie Baker Roskie