Steve Kerr wasn’t interested in talking about basketball before Tuesday night’s game at American Airlines Center, and for good reason.
Roughly 400 miles from where Kerr’s Warriors and the Dallas Mavericks played Game 4 of the Western Conference finals, 19 children and two adult faculty members were killed in a shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. The suspect, 18-year-old Uvalde High School student Salvador Ramos, is also dead, per ABC News.
Kerr has routinely used his platform as an NBA coach to address societal issues ever since he joined the Warriors in 2014. The guard-turned-coach, who lost his father to gun violence in 1984, followed suit Wednesday by giving a heartfelt plea to the nation.
“When are we going to do something?”Kerr asked reporters, per a video shared by the Warriors. “I’m so tired of getting up here and offering condolences to the devastated families that are out there. I’m so tired — I’m tired of the moments of silence. Enough!”
Kerr continued: “I’m fed up. I’ve had enough. We’re gonna play the game tonight, but 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. We can’t sit here and just read about it and go, ‘Well, let’s have a moment of silence. Yeah, go Dubs,’ you know? ‘C’mon, Mavs. Let’s go.’
“That’s what we’re gonna do. We’re gonna go play a basketball game and 50 senators in Washington are going to hold us hostage. You realize 90% of Americans, regardless of political party, want universal background check? Ninety percent of us. 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. They won’t vote on it because they want to hold onto their own power! It’s pathetic! I’ve had enough.”
Joining Kerr in offering emotional reactions to the Texas shooting were several New England-based athletes who took to social media after the news broke.