Today the NBA banned for life an owner of a professional basketball team. After all the media attention, and the investigation into whether or not the tape, on which the owner allegedly made racist statements, was truly of the owner’s voice, the NBA Commissioner did the right thing.
There is no place for racism in professional sports. Or anywhere.
As a child of the South, I heard crap like this my entire life. Lucky for me, my parents were not prejudiced in any way and raised us to love God’s creation, which includes anything and anybody not like us.
That being said, why did the NBA wait?
Simple: to avoid a rush to judgement. It very well could have turned out that the tape was faked. Rather than excoriate someone without all the facts (as happens increasingly in our internet-fixated world), the Board of Owners and the Commissioner waited until a legal investigation had been concluded. That is as it should be.
I don’t like the man, I don’t like his politics, and I don’t like what he said at all. But as any citizen of this country, he was innocent until proven guilty. What could have happened if the Commissioner had rushed to judgement?
Sometimes, current events present us conundrums like this: 1. Is it really him? 2. If it isn’t really him, why would this have been done? 3. If it is really him, judgement needs to be swift.
I applaud the NBA Commissioner and other owners for their restraint, and for following the letter and intent of the NBA Constitution, and of our country’s laws.
But what if? What if, in the fictional world, it came to light that the tape was faked? What motive could someone have had for this? And what if you throw in the seemingly incidental death of someone on the outskirts of the situation? Someone who knew the truth.
That’s how a writer’s brain works. That’s how new fiction gets written.
Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction. And sometimes, the fiction can go further.
So get writing.