I don’t know about you, but when I heard that LA Clippers owner, Donald Sterling, had made many charitable donations, I grew suspect. What were his motives? Was he trying to boost his image?
Well, now we know. According to Paul Blumenthal and Jason Cherkis of the Huffington Post:
“Since 2007, Sterling’s foundations have spread small sums of money around to multiple nonprofits supporting the African-American and Latino communities as well as a number of education, health care, homeless, and Jewish and Israeli groups. These contributions have been criticized in the past as an attempt to direct attention away from Sterling’s long history of being accused of racial discrimination.”
Apparently, allegations of racism have circulated for years. “He has paid multimillion-dollar settlements over lawsuits accusing him of discriminatory housing policies in his real estate holdings. Documents and interviews related to those cases claimed that Sterling refused to rent to blacks (‘they smell’), Latinos (‘all of the Mexicans that just sit around and smoke and drink all day’) and families with children (‘brats’).”
It makes me cringe. But, there’s a bigger issue at play here. Should charities accept gifts from donors whose motives or backgrounds are suspect? Aren’t their brand reputations at stake? Continue reading