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Steve Kerr, the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics banded together ahead of Sunday’s Game 2 to preach gun restriction advocacy.
Both teams wore orange shirts that read End Gun Violence, stamped with anti-gun organizations throughout to call attention to gun reform after the Uvalde, Texas incident on May 24.
Kerr has been criticized for advocating that schools should not have armed security while being outraged over mass shootings — opting to use his platform for banning weapons instead.
All spoken through a mask.
The organizations also appeared on the jumbotron at Chase Center ahead of the contest.
“I think we feel very strongly as a league that it’s time for people to take notice and to take part in what should be a nationwide effort to limit the gun violence that’s out there,” Kerr said in his pre-game press conference.
“And there are ways to limit it. There are proven laws that are waiting to be passed, whether it’s background checks or what have you. There are things we can do that would not violate people’s Second Amendment rights, but would save lives. The idea behind wearing the shirts for both teams is to make people aware that they can contribute to different gun safety, gun violence prevention groups.”
Celtics coach Ime Udoka joined the call.
“We play a game that if you win, you’re elated and you feel great about it; you lose, you’re devastated for the moment but it’s not life and death, you still go on,” Udoka said. “The awareness is about things that continue to happen in our communities. They are devastated and their families are devastated and we kind of go on with our normal life and business.
“Just continue to keep those thoughts in mind and those people are struggling,” Udoka added. “It continues to happen, and awareness and changes need to be made and we are all on the same page as far as that.”
Kerr, alongside a growing number of athletes and coaches throughout the world of sports, is calling for a change in the trend of mass shootings in America by voting politicians [Republicans] out of office.
“The biggest thing, I think, is to vote. What I understand is that a lot of races, congressional races that are out there, despite the fact that the majority of people in this country want gun safety measures put in place, a lot of those races are decided by people who aren’t so much for any kind of gun safety measures,” said Kerr. “And so people got to vote, and if you feel strongly about saving lives and possibly even someone in your own family, get out and vote. That’s the only way to convince the people we need to convince to start implementing gun safety regulation prevention laws, things that we can do to help.”
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela