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A “fed-up” Golden State coach Steve Kerr called out America’s politicians to do their job to solve the nation’s gun violence epidemic in light of yet another mass shooting at a school in Texas which has left 19 people dead.
Speaking at his scheduled media conference before game four of the NBA Western Confernce finals, Kerr slammed the table in frustration as he launced into a passionate speech about the scourge of gun violence in the United States.
Visibly shaken, he took aim at the US Senate’s inaction over legislation to institute universal background checks for gun purchases and reinforced that an overwhelming majority – 90% – of Americans support.
“I’m so tired of getting up here and offering condolences to devastated families that are out there. I’m tired of excuses, I’m tired of moments of silence. Enough!” he demanded.
“There’s 50 senators who refuse to vote on HR-8, which is a background check rule that the House passed two years ago,” he said. “They won’t vote on it because they want to hold onto their own power. It’s pathetic. I’ve had enough.”
Kerr speaks from the heart on this topic.
His father, American professor Malcolm Kerr, was murdered in 1984, shot by terrorists near his office at the American University in the Lebanese city of Beirut.
He challenged the US Senators to put their self-interest aside.
“I ask you: Are you going to put your own desire for power ahead of the lives of our children and our elderly and our churchgoers? Because that’s what it looks like,” Kerr said.
“I’m fed up. I’ve had enough. We’re going to play the game tonight. But I want every person here, every person listening to this, to think about your own child, grandchild, mother, father, sister, brother — how would you feel if this happened to you today? We can’t get numb to this!”
NBA superstar LeBron James tweeted that “there simply has to be change. HAS TO BE!!”
Kerr started his speech by acknowledging that there was no need to discuss basketball when more serious matters were pressing.
“I’m not gonna talk about basketball. Nothing’s happened with our team in the last six hours,” Kerr said.
“We’re gonna start the same way tonight. Any basketball questions don’t matter. Since we left shootaround, 14 children (which was later updated to 19) were killed 400 miles from here. And a teacher.”
The Warriors ended up losing the match in Dallas 119-109 to the Mavericks, who forced a fifth game in the seven-match series back in San Francisco but the result mattered little in the context of the tragedy.