Donald Sterling’s recent racist remarks stirred up the NBA and evoked the memory of a painful past in U.S. history. The news media, sports celebrities and even the President have condemned the remarks. While the source of these remarks have yet to be authenticated, the remarks themselves were clearly discriminatory.
They were also meant to be private.
The fact that the remarks were private is most troubling, because what one thinks and does in private reflects one’s true character.
Imagine having your private thoughts projected on a jumbotron. What will people see?
I suspect that many of us have private thoughts that we are not proud of. While we externally project an image of political-correctness, in private, or subconsciously, we may behave the opposite. There are many reasons why one group of people could develop biases against another, some may even feel justified due to real-life experiences. But social biases broadly generalized and left unchallenged can lead to racism.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. (Rom. 7:15)
You see, racism is not just an issue of White-vs-Black or majority vs. minority, as even minority groups discriminate against one another. Let me be clear: I am not defending Donald Sterling; far from it. I am challenging anyone, myself included, who casts stones at Sterling to examine ourselves first.
For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. (Matt. 7:2)
None of us are born race-less, and racism can creep into our subconsciousness ever so subtly. The Donald Sterling firestorm should serve as an occasion for us to search within ourselves for any racial biases, however big or small, and do some house cleaning.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way. (Ps. 139:23-24)
(The above article is solely the expressed opinion of the author and does not necessarily reflect the position of his current and past churches)