Thank you Mr. Donald Sterling, owner of the. L.A. Clippers, for opening the dialogue among us about race that should have occurred long ago.
If it were not for your behavior, the media would not have been energized by the issue you highlighted.
The focus on your behavior forced previously quiet athletes to take the stand that they and other minorities ought to have taken.
Only a few courageous notables like Muhammed Ali, Supreme Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor, Harry Belafonte, Harry Edwards, Tavis Smiley, Jim Brown, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and others of that generation who valued self respect above "bling" have exhibited the courage to speak out about the injustices that permeate every sector of our society. The spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King influenced them.
Your comments ought to force people in every sector of our society to examine not only their private behavior but the systemic behaviors that enable discriminatory results to occur in all human interaction.
Let's continue these conversations and hopefully develop ways to prevent anyone from being negatively affected by actions that are injurious.
Let's also hold those who are supposed to prevent injuries accountable.
I don't expect a change of behavior from you Mr. Sterling, but your remarks may enable the rest of us to become more tolerant and fair with each other.
William E. "Gene" Robertson is a Columbia resident and a professor emeritus at MU. He writes occasional columns for the Missourian.