I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. - MLK
I think he kinda got a raw deal, although I wouldn't be surprised if that "lifetime ban" is rescinded in a few years. It's the Marge Schott-George Steinbrenner treatment; this is not unprecedented (the only difference being that Steinbrenner broke the law, twice). But the NBA is under new leadership now, and with players threatening to boycott games, enough was enough. The brand is far more valuable than the man, and the man was threatening the brand, regardless of how skeevy the circumstances were that his feelings came to the fore.
Freedom of speech is not freedom from criticism.