Fans, not thought police

05/04/2014 9:05 AM

05/05/2014 12:39 PM

Re "The thought police got Donald Sterling" (Viewpoints, May 3): Ralph Shaffer criticizes outraged fans for putting pressure on commercial firms or organizing others into refusing to attend games because of Donald Sterling's private comments. He then declares that they have become thought police.

Now, if government police rounded up those they deemed wrong-thinkers and imprisoned them, that would be wrong. However, when fans use the power of the marketplace and push back by speaking out loud and clear, that is a legitimate, effective way to take a stand on issues that they have a right to be outraged over. Without such efforts, bigoted thoughts are allowed to fester and poison our society, growing eventually into ills like discrimination, Jim Crow laws and slavery. A few of Sterling's private words might have started the fire, but they brought to light his bigoted background, which was not so private after all.

-- Mini Ferguson, Sacramento

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