He thoughtfully suggests that gun control be considered a public safety issue above all else.
Following the tragic mass murder of 26 people in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr referred to political inaction on gun control “disgusting and a shame.” After conveying his condolences to the victims and their families, he discussed actionable strategy and tactics, suggesting that gun control should exist more as a public safety issue than a constitutional or political one.
Kerr spent much of his career in San Antonio, just miles from the site of the church massacre. Further, Kerr lost his father, the former president of the American University of Beruit, to a hail of assassins’ gunfire in Lebanon in 1984.
The Warriors coach offered a lengthy assessment of the issue at hand, stating clearly that politics, lobby money, and even the Second Amendment shouldn’t infringe on the American public’s right to safety.
“Tough question. I have my thoughts. First I want to express my condolences to the people involved, the surviviors, the people directly affected. It’s just awful, that's the prevailing sentiment from all of us today. To solve it, I think we almost have to look at it like a public health issue. Too often, we get caught up in political rhetoric, second amendment rights, NRA stuff. We have to look at this as having nothing to do with partisanship, political parties. It’s got to be a public safety issue, a public health issue. I read a great article today that talked about comparing this to the automobile industry. Apparently in the 1950s, about nine or 10 times more people died in auto wrecks than die right now. What changed over 70 years? Safety measures, right? Speed limits, auto regulations, seat belts, car seats, driver’s license registration and making sure people deserve to drive. All these things are safety issues, and I think we somehow get our government [to] cut through all the crap and get right to the point — the point of fact, which is safety. Which means a lot of things we can do without taking away people’s second amendment rights. Let’s do the sensible thing. But our government has to lead the way, and they can’t just cave into the NRA just because they want to make money. They have to put people’s safety and health over the interest of the gun lobby and the gun industry. Doesn’t seem like it would be that far of a stretch, but for whatever reason, we’re paralyzed and unable to do anything to protect our citizens. It’s disgusting and it’s a shame.”
Kerr’s former mentor and San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, known to tackle social issues head-on in his statements to the press, offered similar thoughts the day of the massacre.
Both coaches with ties to the area express sorrow regarding the shooting as well as frustration that public outcry seems to be unable to change gun control policies in the United States.