“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 power.”
Those words were part of Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr’s reaction during a press conference Tuesday, after a mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Texas killed at least 19 students, one teacher, and a second school employee.
Kerr, whose own father was a victim of gun violence, was clearly agitated as he told reporters he would not talk about basketball while also addressing what happened 400 miles away from Dallas, where the Warriors faced the Mavericks Tuesday night.
“I’m not going to talk about basketball. Nothing’s happened with our team in the last six hours. We’re going to start the same way tonight. Any basketball questions don’t matter. Since we left shoot around, 14 children were killed 400 miles from here, as well as a teacher,” he said. “And in the last 10 days, we’ve had elderly black people killed in a supermarket, in Buffalo.”
He went on to mention the horrific shooting of Asian churchgoers in Southern California, which resulted in the death of a man attempting to stop the gunman and the injuries of numerous more.
“When are we going to do something?” Kerr reacts to the continuous gun violence in the United States. “I’m tired. I’m so tired of getting up here and offering condolences, to the devastated families that are out there. I’m so tired of the excuse, but I’m sorry, I’m tired of the moments of silence. Enough.”
Kerr then went after the 50 senators, accusing them of refusing to vote on the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019 (HR8), which would mandate background checks for every firearm sale.
“So I ask you, Mitch McConnell, ask all of you senators who refuse to do anything about the violence in school shootings and supermarket shootings, 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?” said an emotional Kerr.
Kerr concluded his speech by urging everyone to consider their own child, grandchild, mother, or father and how they would feel if something similar occurred to them.
“We can’t get numb to this,” he said. “We can’t sit here and just read about it and go, ‘Well, a moment of silence.'”
Watch Kerr’s passionate plea for gun control after the mass shooting in Uvalde.