By now you’ve probably heard the latest near-celebrity uproar that involves the owner of the L. A. Clippers basketball team, Donald Sterling, and his purported bigotry and hatred toward blacks and other minorities.

You’ve at least heard the shortened audio clip that is being broadcast nine ways to Sunday in an effort to “promote awareness”.

Let me be perfectly clear: I do not tolerate bigotry or prejudice in any fashion.

Having said that, I also don’t accept a blanket decision based on tid-bits and samplings. I prefer to discover the entire story and not make snap judgments.

I also have a problem with vilifying a person based on a conversation recorded by someone else.

Sure, Sterling said things that are highly inflammatory. Worse than that, it appears he really does think and feel in a disgusting, greater-than-thou matter.

But the girlfriend who recorded, and then broadcast, the conversation (or perhaps an edited version of several conversations), is not an innocent bystander. V Stiviano is just as guilty for promoting this hatred because of the manner in which it was done.

Doesn’t recording such a volatile discussion indicate forethought? A person doesn’t start rambling and say “Oh, I wish I’d recorded that.” There’s no magic button that can go back in time to record from the beginning of a conversation when it’s nearly over. No. The idea to record a conversation was already there. She knew she would need it.

And for what purpose? To trap Sterling into saying something vulgar?

I did a little research. I read the entire nine minute transcript. And I learned how the girlfriend has been accused of embezzlement and how she threatened to “get even”.

My point is this. Sterling has admitted to being bigoted and prejudiced. Those beliefs and behaviors are disgusting and dangerous.

But so is the mindset of recording conversations with the intent to use them later. Stiviano is not innocent. Sterling is not innocent. I don’t like giving people like that publicity.

But as long as the news will continue to show small clip bits and use colossal words like “angry” and “mob mentality”, I will speak up and use words like “acceptance” and “love” and “okay”.

I’m not perfect. Far from it. But my imperfections have nothing to do with the color of my skin, my gender, or even my country. My imperfections come from being human. And since we all are, I promote peace and forgiveness.

Shame on you, Sterling, for thinking you’re something greater. And shame on you, Stiviano, for using underhanded means to get your point across.

Neither of you are getting an invitation to any of my holiday parties.

And Frankly, My Dear . . . that’s all she wrote!

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