Instead of talking about basketball during Tuesday’s pregame news conference, Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr used the allotted time to call attention to the murders of 19 children and two adults at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, and to condemn politicians for not passing gun legislation that could prevent such tragedies.
“When are we going to do something?” Kerr yelled, banging his hands on the table. “I’m tired. I am so tired of getting up here and offering condolences to the devastated families that are out there. I am so tired of the, excuse, I am sorry, I am tired of the moments of silence. Enough!”
Steve Kerr on today’s tragic shooting in Uvalde, Texas. pic.twitter.com/lsJ8RzPcmC
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) May 24, 2022
Kerr, who also pointed to the recent shootings that took place at a Buffalo grocery store and a Laguna Woods church, accused a group of senators of putting their own desires for power ahead of the will of the American people by not passing H.R. 8, a bill that would expand background checks to include private gun sales and gun show sales. That bill passed in the U.S. House of Representatives in early 2021, but it never made it to the Senate floor.
“There’s a reason why they won’t vote on it,” Kerr said. “To hold on to power.”
The coach added, “I want every person here. Every person listening to this to think about your own child or grandchild, or mother or father, sister, brother… how would you feel if this happened to you today? We can’t get numb to this.”
Kerr has long been outspoken about gun violence, as his father was fatally shot in a terrorist attack in Beirut in 1984.
Kerr said that 90 percent of the United States public—regardless of their political party—support universal background checks for guns, a claim that has been previously verified by fact-checkers.
“We are being held hostage by 50 senators in Washington who refuse to even put it to a vote, despite what we the American people want,” he said. “They won’t vote on it, because they want to hold on to their own power.”
“It’s pathetic,” he said, as he stood up to exit the conference. “I’ve had enough.”
The video of Kerr’s impassioned plea for gun control has since gone viral on social media, which has received praise from supporters on social media.
One person tweeted, “Steve Kerr is 100% right. There are 50 Republican senators who are holding us hostage. They are putting their own desire for Power over the lives of children. Thank you for this powerful statement, Mr. Steve Kerr.”
Even legendary TV write Norman Lear, who’s written a few moving speeches himself and has witnessed a lot in his nearly one century on earth, was moved.
As a 99 year old combat veteran of World War II, the father of six, and grandfather to four, I couldn’t be more grateful to Steve Kerr, a man who expressed everything I’ve been feeling since the horror of yesterday’s killings. Please watch. https://t.co/uMXg5qGsBg
— Norman Lear (@TheNormanLear) May 26, 2022
On Thursday, there was a 23rd victim of the school massacre, as the husband of slain fourth grade teacher Irma Garcia died of a heart attack two days after the mass shooting.
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