San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich has never been one to mince words. Popovich speaks his mind and he did exactly that when he spoke about some of the NFL owners who claim to support the Black Lives Matter movement and racial equality, but who also contributed to President Donald Trump’s campaign.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft is in that group.
Gregg Popovich Calls Robert Kraft and Others ‘Hypocritical’
When New York Times’ Maureen Dowd asked Popovich what he thought about the seven NFL owners that contributed millions to Trump’s campaign, Popovich said: “It’s just hypocritical. It’s incongruent. It doesn’t make sense. People aren’t blind. Do you go to your staff and your players and talk about injustices and democracy and how to protest? I don’t get it. I think they put themselves in a position that’s untenable.”
NFL Commissioner and every team in the NFL has submitted a statement on social media condemning institutional racism, police brutality toward African-Americans. However, there is skepticism about the NFL and its owners’ sincerity and commitment beyond a statement.
Many point to Trump as the primary ignitor or agitator that has sent racial tension to the current state in the United States. Therefore, men in high places like Kraft and other NFL owners who helped place Trump in his current position would seemingly be contradicting themselves in showing support of Black Lives Matter, and similar protests.
The Seven Owners Who Paid into Trump’s Campaign
Kraft is one of the NFL’s most high-profile contributors to Trump’s campaign, but he isn’t alone. The Dallas Cowboys’ Jerry Jones, the Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder, Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke, New York Jets owner Woody Johnson, and now deceased Texans owner Robert McNair.
If you’re a progressive, that’s a tough group considering Snyder refused to change the name of his franchise despite criticism of the racially insensitive nickname, and McNair was nearly the target of a full-fledged rebellion from his players after he referred to them as “inmates.”
It will take a little more than a simple donation and a statement on social media to convince anyone Kraft and others are serious about changing many of the issues that have plagued African-American players and people in the United States. If Kraft cares to shift the narrative, he would need to do something that makes a bigger impact on those who are seeking noticeable change.
Patriots Being Urged to Sign Colin Kaepernick
Several members of the media and even Massachusetts Senator Joe Kennedy have encouraged the Patriots to sign Colin Kaepernick. If Trump and the NFL owners who supported his campaign are symbols for one side of this crucial issue in the United States, Kaepernick is most certainly the figure who most represents the other side of the conversation.
It would be a huge gesture by Kraft if he was the owner who helped to break down the wall and helped to pave the way to more unity.
Perhaps then, Popovich wouldn’t still regard Kraft as a hypocrite.