Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman thinks Donald Sterling would not have received a lifetime ban for his controversial comments about blacks had he been an owner in the NFL rather than the NBA.
"Because we have an NFL team called the Redskins," he told Time magazine. "I don’t think the NFL really is as concerned [about racial issues] as they show. The NFL is more of a bottom line league. If it doesn’t affect their bottom line, they’re not as concerned."
Sherman also said he wasn't all that shocked by Sterling's comments because of some of the reactions he received after his nationally televised "I'm the best corner in the game" rant following the Seahawks' victory in the NFC championship in January.
"You’ve got a lot of racial backlash, and a lot of racist comments that were uncalled for – I can never see a time where racism is called for," Sherman said. "So it didn’t shock me as much as it would have had I not experienced that personally, had I not seen those things.
"Because it showed me that America still had some progress to make. On equality, and understanding that it doesn’t matter what color you are, you treat people as people. ... In [Sterling's] situation, it just seems like a lot of people gave him a lot of flack, well deserved, but you know – I feel like a lot more people were surprised than they should have been."
He added: "That’s why a lot of people shy away from the conversation that I forced on us in January. People want to it to be done, they want that uncomfortable truth to be over with, they want the racism to be done, they want to believe everything is great and hunky-dory. And it’s not. There’s a lot of racism still alive and still active. And it just forced America to rethink it once again. And to really, really understand that racism isn’t gone. We have to actively push it out. And snuff it out."