As he has in the past, Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr took a hard, highly critical stance against the U.S. government’s inaction regarding gun violence and mass shootings, also blaming the National Rifle Association for its role.
In the wake of Wednesday’s high school shooting in South Florida, where a 19-year-old gunman killed 17 people before being taken into police custody, Kerr was asked again by media for his reaction. His response was direct:
“It doesn’t seem to matter to our government that children are being shot to death, day after day, in schools,” Kerr said. “... It’s not enough apparently, to move our government, the people who are running this country, to do anything. That’s demoralizing.”
Kerr also mentioned lobbying efforts by the NRA as a factor, and advised voting for lawmakers who will focus on “the real safety issues, not building some stupid wall for billions of dollars,” referring to President Donald Trump’s plan to build a U.S.-Mexico border wall.
The coach has taken an anti-gun stance and called for action by politicians before. In the aftermath of the Oct. 1 concert shooting that killed more than 50 people in Las Vegas, Kerr told The Athletic’s Anthony Slater: “We’ve been offering victims thoughts and prayers for three decades. We need to offer them something else.”
Kerr’s father, Malcom H. Kerr, was assassinated by gunmen in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1984, when Steve Kerr was 18 years old. Kerr has identified that as a personal source of empathy.
“I know exactly how they (families of the victims in the Las Vegas shooting) feel, having lost my dad to gun violence,” he said in a podcast with The Athletic.