Atlanta Hawks owner Bruce Levenson has become the second Jewish basketball team owner this year to be forced to sell up after making racist remarks.
Levenson came clean after an email he sent to his co-owners and general manager, blaming blacks for the Hawks’ low number of season ticket holders.
“The black crowd scared away the whites and there are simply not enough affluent black fans to build a signficant [sic] season ticket base,” Levenson wrote in an email dated August 2012, but which has only recently surfaced .
His decision to sell comes just months after fellow Jewish NBA owner, Donald Sterling, lost the Los Angeles Clippers after making racist comments that were secretly recorded.
Levenson, who had been one of Sterling’s most vocal critics, issued his own apology this weekend, saying: “If you’re angry at what I wrote, you should be. I’m angry at myself. I’m truly embarrassed by my words.”
He added: “We all may have subtle biases and preconceptions when it comes to race, but my role as leader is to challenge them, not to validate or accommodate them.”