This post has been updated.
President Obama on Sunday said that Clippers owner Donald Sterling’s “incredibly offensive” racist comments show that racism still lives in the U.S.
“When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don’t really have to do anything, you just let them talk. That’s what happened here,” Obama said when asked about Sterling’s comments during a press conference with Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, according to CNN.
The president said that Sterling’s comments prove that “the United States continues to wrestle with the legacy of race and slavery and segregation.”
“That’s still there, the vestiges of discrimination. We’ve made enormous strides, but you’re going to continue to see this percolate up every so often,” he continued.
Sterling allegedly told his girlfriend that he didn’t want her to bring black people to his games, according to audio obtained by TMZ. The National Basketball Association is now investigating the recording.
Obama said he hoped that the NBA addresses Sterling’s comments.
“Obviously, the NBA is a league that is beloved by fans all across the country. It’s got a lot of African-American players, steeped in African-America culture, and I suspect the NBA is concerned and going to be resolving this.” he said.