Updated: May 31, 2022
Steve Kerr is upset about yesterday's school shooting. We all are. In this situation, all 330 million of us are united in grief. The only person on the other "side" of this is dead.
Opinions are Like Belly Buttons
Ultimately, I don't blame any celebrity for speaking out on an issue they feel strongly about. If you think something is a matter of life and death and you believe you can save lives by saying something, you should.
What I blame celebrities for is not knowing what they are talking about. If you are veering outside your lane (basketball in Kerr's case), you need to do more-than-superficial research before you put an Air Jordan in your mouth.
If Kerr simply had a generic meltdown of grief and/or frustration and/or anger for the gut-wrenching tragedy, that would have been completely understandable. From anyone.
But, Steve Kerr* fancies himself some sort of beyond-hoops renaissance man who is entitled to lecture the rest of us on specifically what should have been done to prevent the massacre. Somehow, in the midst of an emotional rant, he was able to be very specific and very accusatory. And, as usual, very wrong.
Our world is cursed with lots of nitwits who make up for their lack of understanding with a supreme abundance of arrogance. Kerr is just one of the few nitwits who is not at Davos this week.
But, again, while I desperately wish celebrities would know what they are talking about when they use their "bully pulpit," I don't blame them for trying to do what they think is right.
"La, La, La, I Can't Hear You"
Having said that, the rest of us should not listen.
Just because someone can shoot 40% from behind the arc ... or act in a film ... or pound on a guitar ... or star in a reality show ... does not mean they know anything about anything else. And we should not respect their opinion any more than our own.
And, importantly, media should not amplify their opinions. For example, it is fine for the NBA Network to broadcast Kerr's press conference live. That's normal. And, again, it is within Kerr's rights to say what he wants to say.
But don't replay it. On any platform. His opinion (or any other celebrity's) is the single opinion of one person - who, in Kerr's case, makes a living watching Steph Curry play basketball. It does not mean any more than your opinion or mine. Full Stop.
If he is not explaining how the Warriors can close out the Western Conference Finals, IGNORE HIM.
* It is fair and worthwhile to tell a bit of Kerr's story. On January 18, 1984 he was a freshman basketball player at the University of Arizona. That day, his father, who was the president of the American University in Beirut, Lebanon, was assassinated by Islamic terrorists. Two days later, Kerr was inserted into a basketball game between his Wildcats and their bitter rivals from Arizona State. Kerr scored 12 points and emotionally led Arizona to its first victory over ASU in 10 tries. Before that game, the Wildcats were 3-11 in coach Lute Olsen's first year. Looking back, one might point to that game as a catalyst for the University of Arizona's rapid climb to become a perennial NCAA basketball power, which they have been ever since.
But, that story does not make him an expert on gun control in the United States.