Ian Gordon

Ian Gordon

Copy Editor

When not wrangling copy for the MoJo crew, Ian writes about immigration, sports, and Latin America. His work has appeared in ESPN the Magazine, Wired, and Slate. Got a comment or a tip? Email him: igordon [at] motherjones [dot] com.

Get my RSS |

Advertise on MotherJones.com

Donald Sterling's $2.5 Million Fine Isn't As Much As You Think It Is

| Tue Apr. 29, 2014 3:31 PM EDT

Donald Sterling's penalty is in: a lifetime ban from the NBA and a $2.5 million fine, the maximum league sanction, for the racist audio recording released last week. The NBA will also work to force him to sell the Los Angeles Clippers, the team he's owned since 1981.

It's a harsh punishment, no doubt. But let's not kid ourselves about the $2.5 million. Sterling, after all, is reportedly worth $1.9 billion. According to a 2013 Credit Suisse report on global wealth, the median American is worth $44,911. In other words, a $2.5 million fine for Sterling is like a $59 fine for that middle-of-the-road American.

Also, a reminder: Donald Sterling bought the Clippers for $12.5 million. The team's value is now at least $575 million; some think it's worth more than $1 billion. We have a feeling he'll come out of this just fine.

Mon Nov. 11, 2013 7:00 AM EST
Fri Aug. 9, 2013 6:00 AM EDT
Thu Jul. 18, 2013 3:05 AM EDT
Tue Mar. 5, 2013 6:57 PM EST
Fri Feb. 1, 2013 3:59 PM EST
Sun Dec. 23, 2012 7:11 AM EST
Thu Dec. 22, 2011 7:00 AM EST
Mon Nov. 7, 2011 6:25 PM EST
Tue Oct. 25, 2011 6:00 AM EDT
Wed Oct. 19, 2011 4:43 PM EDT
Wed Aug. 24, 2011 6:00 AM EDT
Mon Aug. 1, 2011 6:17 PM EDT