Warriors head coach Steve Kerr spoke out against police violence and in support of Colin Kaepernick’s ongoing protest in a conference with reporters on Wednesday.
49ers quarterback Kaepernick has chosen to kneel during the national anthem in protest of racial injustice and police killings, and sparked a movement across the NFL that has begun to spread into other sports.
Kerr discussed the matter and praised Kaepernick’s decision, taking a strong stance in wake of the recent police shootings that killed Terence Crutcher, an unarmed black man, in Tulsa, Okla.
“...probably one of the best things that’s come out of the Kaepernick issue is that people are talking, and that’s a good thing,” Kerr said, according to Anthony Slater of the San Jose Mercury News. “No matter what side of the spectrum you’re on, I would hope every American is disgusted with what’s going on in the country, what just happened in Tulsa two days ago with Terence Crutcher. Doesn’t matter what side you’re on on the Kaepernick stuff, you better be disgusted with the things that are happening.”
The Warriors coach offered a nuanced take on the situation, and added that he thinks there will be some form of similar protest taking place around the NBA this season.
“I understand people who are offended by his stance, maybe they have a military family member or maybe they lost someone in a war and maybe that anthem means a lot more to them than someone else. But then you flip it around and what about non-violence protests? That’s America. This is what our country is about. It’s a non-violent protests. It’s what it should be about.”
Kerr said he felt Kaepernick has done a good job “clarif[ying] his message” in recent weeks. “No one has to be right, no one has to be wrong.” Kerr also mentioned that he planned for the Warriors to discuss the matter as a team.
“...this is about unarmed black people being killed indiscriminately around the country, and it just happened two days ago,” Kerr concluded. “That’s the message. That’s what matters. The other stuff, you can talk about all day. Nobody’s right, nobody’s wrong. But that matters and everybody should be trying to do something, whatever’s in their power.”