On Tuesday, 19 students and two teachers were killed in a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. About 400 miles away, the Golden State Warriors were preparing for a playoff game against the Dallas Mavericks — but Steve Kerr couldn’t turn his attention toward the game. The Warriors head coach took to the mic before tip-off to address the pre-game media, but it quickly became clear that he, like many Americans, is sick of people losing their lives because of the willful inaction of politicians.
This is not the first time that Kerr has given an impassioned plea to politicians to do something — literally anything — about gun violence. Following a mass shooting in Sacramento, California, earlier this year, he said, “I don’t think moments of silence are going to do anything. At some point, our government has to decide: Are we going to have some common-sense gun laws? It’s not going to solve everything, but it will save lives.” In 2019, he spoke out following a mass shooting in Virginia and called on lawmakers to “save some lives” with gun reform laws. In 2017, he called gun violence a “public health issue” in response to a mass shooting at a church in Texas.
Kerr has been beating this drum for years, in part because it is a personal issue for him. Malcolm Kerr, his father, was shot and killed in 1984, so he is familiar with how devastating it is to lose a family member in such a tragic, sudden, and violent manner.
Kerr isn’t alone in his frustration, either. Across the NBA, coaches and players expressed heartbreak for the victims of the shooting and anger that nothing is being done to stop it. That rage is shared by millions of Americans, the majority of whom support at least some form of gun control. But it doesn’t appear to be shared by the politicians who could actually do something about it.