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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

May 1, 2014 at 7:05 PM

Banned NBA owner: Others in the national spotlight behave hypocritically as well

I applaud syndicated columnist Leonard Pitts for his column shining light on the hypocrisy in how our culture deals with the utterances of Donald Sterling and Cliven Bundy [“On race, meet dumb and dumberer,” Opinion, April 29]. It appears that Sterling’s bigotry was common knowledge in the NBA, but it took a very public exposure before NBA Commissioner Adam Silver took action.

Pitts focused on race, but I would submit that this hypocrisy extends much further than race and is a natural characteristic of our humanity in that it is not just practiced by people of low character (Bundy and Sterling) but also by some of the most respected people of our country.

As an example, Warren Buffett, who has previously advocated the importance of institutional investors speaking out against excessive executive compensation, chose to abstain in voting his company’s 400 million shares against Coca-Cola’s equity compensation plan.

If he had done so, given his and Berkshire Hathaway’s stature, it is probable that Coca-Cola’s board of directors might have acted differently. It is also possible that this might have been a tipping point on the whole issue of excessive compensation.

I personally find this act of hypocrisy more disturbing than that of Bundy or Sterling.

Richard Thompson, Bellevue

Comments | More in Income inequality, Race | Topics: Cliven Bundy, Coca-Cola, Donald Sterling


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