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Kerr wades into political pond once again with Team USA

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Kerr wades into political pond once again with Team USA

Kerr steps back into the political pond with Team USA. originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

A faction of self-described American patriots is discussing a boycott of the Paris Olympics this summer because they are unhappy with a Team USA roster. It’s a nonsensical response, but so is any act spurred by spite.

Caitlin Clark, the promising rookie of the WNBA Indiana Fever, who happens to be white, was not elected for the Team USA women’s basketball team. Its omission has some people vowing to withdraw their support. It’s the latest grenade thrown into the barrage of discourse surrounding Clark.

Don’t believe for a second that race (Clark’s skin color is attractive to casual fans who previously shunned the majority-black WNBA) isn’t driving this reaction.

The love for the country they say they love is conditional, proving once again that sport and politics are and will always be cousins, whether we like it or not. It is also an example of how subjective definitions of patriotism can result in grotesque contortions of meaning.

Which brings us to Steve Kerr, coach of the Golden State Warriors and, also, related to this topic, the United States men’s basketball team. He is admired and detested for precisely the same reasons, mainly political.

Kerr announced his plan for the 2024 presidential election last week. He is endorsing incumbent President Joe Biden, 81, rather than Donald Trump, the irrepressible convicted felon who will turn 78 on Friday and is seeking a return to the White House. .

Although Kerr’s decision is not a surprise, there are some who might consider a boycott due to her politics. When Kerr coached Team USA at the FIBA ​​World Cup last summer, some Americans stated they would support the United States.

Kerr, however, does not bow down. Appearing Monday night on MSNBC’s “The 11th Hour with Stephanie Ruhle,” Kerr explained his support for Biden and reiterated his long-standing crusade on another political issue that is polarizing but logically shouldn’t. be.

Gun safety.

“It’s clear that President Biden is really interested in implementing gun safety measures,” Kerr said. “Common sense gun violence prevention measures.”

Since his father, Malcolm, was murdered on the campus of the American University of Beirut in 1984, Kerr has spent most of his life campaigning for laws designed to restrict the prevalence of firearms.

Kerr advocates for universal background checks and has worked with numerous organizations, including Sandy Hook Promise, Giffords Law Center and March for Our Lives, dedicated to stemming the tide of gun violence, which is the leading cause of non-accidental death among teens. in the U.S.

“I know we can prevent (the deaths),” Kerr said. “President Biden is convinced that he will promote common sense laws that can achieve this. And I know President Trump won’t do that. So, it’s really a very easy choice for me.”

Kerr’s support for Biden and his pursuit of stricter gun laws are unpopular among conservatives and downright vilified by far-right types willing to root against America. He is deeply aware of this and that is why he has organized his own boycott of it.

Kerr, who once had a frequent presence on social media, particularly Twitter, now known as nonprofit Innocence Project.

While many keyboard bullies populating social media continue to urge Kerr to “stick with sports,” there is nothing to indicate that he will “shut up and train.”

And yet Kerr is seen in a generally positive light. The results of a recent casino.ca survey of 3,000 NBA fans concluded that he is the most beloved head coach in the league. Nearly eight in 10 (78 percent) Warriors fans consider themselves “familiar” with Kerr, which was well above the league average of 51 percent. Additionally, his “likability” score was 25 percent above average.

Kerr, 58, speaks out against injustice, marches for racial and gender equality and participates in voter registration drives. Although he now avoids posting on X, his “profile photo” remembering the late George Floyd remains in effect. He considers himself a patriot committed to the pursuit of a civilized and humane America.

Kerr’s detractors (mainly the same group that complains about Clark not being on Team USA) consider him a radical who too often strays from the boundaries of the sport.

But, naturally, he was asked about Clark’s absence from the women’s team.

“I’m sorry she’s not there,” Kerr said. “But I’m sure she’ll have a great opportunity in four years. When you put these Olympic teams together, all you care about is winning. It will probably take a couple of years for Caitlin to really be on the top rung.

“The women’s team will take the 12 players who they think can help take home the gold. That’s exactly what the men’s team did. That’s the name of the game. No politics in the Olympic Games. “We just want to win.”

A sensible response, without an iota of spite, unlike those who are not willing to support all the teams that represent their beloved country.

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