Racism has once again made ugly headlines because of the remarks by Clippers owner, Donald Sterling. Much has been rightly said. These remarks are unacceptable, ignorant, wrong, bad, degrading, etc… Many others can be added, but these make the point. I can reinforce from our Catholic perspective that treating and speaking about any race or ethnicity in a degrading and inferior way violates our core belief that each and every person is made in the image and likeness of God and worthy of dignity and respect.
Now that the NBA Commissioner has announced his decision, there might be a tendency to consider the case closed or to debate whether or not this punishment is sufficient or not.
But that focus would also be wrong and akin to having blinders on. Our Catholic tradition rooted in the Bible warns us to not get fixated on other people’s failings, but rather to look at ourselves and clean up our own house. It is much easier to look around and see what is wrong elsewhere.
This very visible ugliness that the media is focusing on should provoke us to look more carefully at one’s own attitudes and actions and at the culture of our institutions and organizations. I more than suspect there is work to be done here.