- (Photo: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni)
A Denver-based radio host is making waves for recently suggesting that all racists must be atheists in relation to the recent scandal regarding bigoted comments made by Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling.
Dan Caplis of Colorado's KNUS radio station said during his Monday morning program that he cannot imagine racists having a religion, because to be religious and judge someone based solely on the color of their skin would be insulting God's creation.
"The roots of this kind of racism, this kind of attitude where somebody really thinks they're superior to somebody, just because of the color of the other person's skin? First, what it tells me – you know, my constitutionally-protected opinion about that person – is they don't believe in God," Caplis said.
"Nobody who believes in God can be a racist, in my view, because once you believe God made us, you mean, God made junk? God made somebody lesser just by virtue of the color of their skin? So my starting point is always all racists must be atheists. They can't possibly believe in God."
Caplis was speaking on racism in reference to the recent scandal surrounding Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, who was recently banned from the NBA and fined $2.5 million dollars after recordings of phone conversations were released that reveal Sterling making racist comments to his girlfriend at the time, V. Stiviano. In the recordings, Sterling tells the woman that it "bothers [him] a lot that you want to broadcast that you're associating with black people," adding that he doesn't want Stiviano to bring black people to his games.
Along with being banned from the NBA, the basketball league's commissioner Adam Silver says he is also trying to force Sterling to sell his team franchise.
Caplis later said on his radio program that he didn't mean to upset atheists when he made his comments, saying that he doesn't think all atheists are racists, but he stands by his statement that all racists are atheist.
"I never said that all atheists are racist," Caplis said.
"In fact, I've never had that impression whatsoever, that any sort of big number of atheists were racist," he continued. "My point is the opposite, or a different point, I should say. That I think, probably, all racists are, at the end of the day, atheists."
"I apologize if it was taken that way, but never could've imagined somebody would think I was saying that all atheists are racists. That would be a goofy thing to say. I was just saying all racists are atheists."
Hemant Mehta, blogger of the "Friendly Atheist," wrote that he finds Caplis' statements to be "untrue" and "unfair."
"What Caplis said isn't just untrue – it's unfair. To lump racists into our category just feeds into the stereotype that atheists must be immoral," Mehta said.