I spent the entire weekend commenting and answering questions to friends and family about Donald. In addition, I listened and read a tremendous amount of comments regarding the incident. I myself did not want to make a quick decision simply based off of emotion alone, so I spent a great deal of time reviewing all sides of reason and logic, while still paying close attention to what is in my heart.
My decision is to remain a fan of the players and coaches of the organization for the remainder of the season. If Donald retains ownership by the start of next season I will find a new team.
Some who may have read this far might be thinking, "who cares", and truthfully I couldn't be upset with that. Quite honestly, I feel that this decision is reserved for those that care, like my family and friends, however what Steve and the rest of the nation provided me with over the years is enough to be considered extended family. My Clipper family when I could not locate another soul who could relate to my love for Eric Piatkowski or my dislike of Donald.
The Alleged "Hoe"
And this is why Andy Roeser, Mrs. Donald, and any other member of the front office connected to the press release will never again have my respect or support.
Yup, she's using him for his money. Yup, she probably even stole some too. Probably even had sex with multiple other partners while "with" Donald. And after listening to the recording, sounds like she got what she wanted by getting the comments on tape.
All speculation, but many will consider it as fact. So for argument sake, lets say that it is. What really does it change? Unless, you're more upset that such feelings were exposed. I personally do not like the timing nor the method of exposure, but I'm glad that I now know for a FACT who's team I been cheering for.
What does it matter the type of person his girlfriend is, unless we were taking her word on such allegations. But, we're not. Regardless of how the tape came about, a man with his power and control expressed his discriminatory views. This should have infuriated the front office and his wife alike; if they were truly disgusted with what was said. But rather than simply issuing out a classy apology or even a quick generic stand condemning the comments alone, they bring up this case against V. Stiviano. They mention her comments about "getting him back." Those are the actions of the unashamed and unforgiving. If I'm caught doing wrong and the person that happens to turn me in, hates my guts and is responsible for a great deal of wrong themselves...so what? As a man, I did wrong. I own that. Same thing for any family or friend. I don't have to write them off or turn my back on them. But if I truly care about their growth and the feelings of others, I will encourage them to own it; not use "the Hoe" as the scapegoat.
I like most began cheering for the team before even knowing who the prick, Donald was. At 14 I just knew my man Niq was now a Clipper so I'm a Clipper. After realizing Niq was going to become a journey man, I learned to love the idea of cheering for the underdog that no other fan dared cheered for. It provided exclusivity and an accurate representation of my fearless individuality. Also, as it was for the majority of the 20 years, "the Clippers were on the rise" assured my father.
But then I discovered Donald. A college student with years of cheering for my Clippers, owner of a great deal of memorabilia, including my over-sized authentic Q. Rich jersey (lol early 2000s fashion) that I rocked on campus, now discovering Donald's dark alleged past. The combination of not knowing enough and being young and a diehard fan prevented me from stopping my support. Later as a husband and father I passed my clipper love down to my little girls and to wifey; for the last several years we sit courtside at Wells Fargo to see our boys play. That's time, love, money and passion invested.
As disturbing as the past allegations were, they were just that, allegations. And as the allegations continued to pile and pile up, I couldn't see turning my back on my clipper family over something that I myself never took witness to or had been proven as fact. But that changed this weekend.
I sat in front of my computer, an African-American male wearing a Clipper t-shirt listening to such a polluted mindset, I instantly felt sick, embarrassed and ashamed. I felt worst for those young men that were faced with such a tough potentially conflicting decision.
Some may say, "well they HAD to know". Not the case, they knew he was an ass. And most likely knew of the allegations, which makes me respect and empathize with them even further. Cause unlike Donald and all that think like him, these men were open-minded enough to put speculation and perception to the side to fulfill something special for themselves, fans, and this franchise. But, just like everyone else who heard the audio, speculation became fact and there is no turning back from that.
Freedom of Speech
Lastly, we heard it all weekend. "He said these comments in private...", "Many people say worst..", He has a right to feel that way..", etc. I agree. However disgusted I feel about the comments, it's that man's right to feel that way. And express it however it feels necessary.
The problem is, he is an employer of so many. His decisions, which are plagued by his misguided feelings, affect these people. If my trash guy's girlfriend exposed him in that same way, I don't care. Just pick up my trash and keep it moving. But, if it's my dentist, my pizza delivery guy, my daughter's teacher, my president, my employer. Then we have a problem. The common thread is that these people have a certain power a certain control that can really inflict harm on those they see differently. Allegations that have been tied to Donald. Allegations that are now supported with incriminating audio.
In closing, I want to apologize for the long-wideness of the post, but felt it very necessary. I work with grade school children. I had no intent of discussing this any further until I walked in to greet them this morning. Knowing how much of a fan I am of the Clippers, and being such a role model (some cheer for the Clippers now because of me), they eagerly awaited my reaction and response to this fiasco. One little girl told me she cried when she heard the audio.
So maybe not a big deal to some, I get it, you may have never been exposed to anything that hit so close to home that had a profound impact on you. You're excused. But this sh*t is deep. Deep enough that I'm no longer a Clipper fan until this jackass sells, which means I'm already scouting out other teams.