Gregg Popovich: ‘The System Has to Change’

Gregg Popovich, coach of the San Antonio Spurs, on the protests happening across the US after police murdered George Floyd:

The thing that strikes me is that we all see this police violence and racism, and we’ve seen it all before, but nothing changes. That’s why these protests have been so explosive. But without leadership and an understanding of what the problem is, there will never be change. And white Americans have avoided reckoning with this problem forever, because it’s been our privilege to be able to avoid it. That also has to change.

And on Donald Trump:

He’s not just divisive. He’s a destroyer. To be in his presence makes you die. He will eat you alive for his own purposes. I’m appalled that we have a leader who can’t say ‘black lives matter.’ That’s why he hides in the White House basement. He is a coward. He creates a situation and runs away like a grade-schooler. Actually, I think it’s best to ignore him. There is nothing he can do to make this better because of who he is: a deranged idiot.

“He’s not just divisive. He’s a destroyer. To be in his presence makes you die.” That’s an incredible three sentences.

These three are more important, though:

Again, we need change. The system has to change. I’m willing to do my part.

Everyone, no matter who or were you are, needs to decide what it means and what it looks like to do their part. That’s not limited to the United States: every country has their own battle.

Australia has its problems. Our Indigenous population is so systematically disadvantaged that a 46,000-year-old sacred site can be demolished by a mining company without their blinking an eye. We can know about the disgusting number of Indigenous deaths in custody for decades and barely do a thing about it.

The problem is racism. It’s built into our society. It’s everywhere. We all – everyone one of us – need to do something about it.