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Abdul-Jabbar: 'More Whites Believe In Ghosts' Than Think Racism Persists

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AP Photo / Danny Moloshok

Abdul-Jabbar said he hopes that the National Basketball Association continues to address racism in the league.

"I think all — the NBA has to do now is just keep the issue in people's minds when it's appropriate. It's not something you can constantly be harping on, but when it's appropriate and they see people doing things that don't line up with how we're supposed to be feeling about things, then people have to speak up," he said.

When Abdul-Jabbar first encountered Sterling, he didn't believe he was a racist, though he wrote in Time that few people should have been surprised at Sterling's remarks on the tape.

"I didn't see a racist then. Mr. Sterling for the most part was gracious, came invited me to his daughter's wedding. You know I didn't feel that there was any racial animus in the man," he said on ABC about first meeting Sterling. "But when I saw what was just portrayed there, you know, how he discriminated against blacks and other minorities it started to bother me."