If the 2016 election results had Stan Van Gundy in a bad mood- Van Gundy called Donald Trump openly and brazenly racist and misogynist- then Gregg Popovich was apoplectic. What Popovich knew was that his next few years were going to be ruined by the ascendancy of Donald Trump.
The beauty that is Gregg Popovich is he believes something my grandmother said: what you think of me is none of my business. Popovich believes what he believes. He says what he says. He dares you to mock him or second guess. So with that as his calling card, imagine what he said about President-elect Donald Trump.
He said a lot in 2016.
Popovich called the country a bunch of hypocrites for saying they believed in one thing and doing something else- that something else would be voting for the likes of a racist like Trump. He pointed out the contradictions between saying you believe in family values and electing a man who has verbally denigrated, belittled and demoralized millions of people who have as their crime being born with skin that isn’t white. Popovich was clearly through with all the Evangelicals who claim “family values” as their birthright and then tolerate non-family values Trump.
“I look at Evangelicals and I wonder those values don’t mean anything to them. All those values to me are more important than anybody’s skill in business or anything else because it tells who we are and how we want to live and what kind of people we are.”
As the leader of the Spurs, Gregg Popovich has welcomed all comers from all countries. All he needs to know is can you play unselfishly, do you understand the team concept, can you give more than you take, do you love to compete, do you play hard? But in the Trump-sphere, immigrants who work here, on one level or another, as a collective group, are maligned, debased, and ostracized.
After Trump’s election, Popovich was annoyed. “He’s in charge of our country. That’s disgusting.”
Nearly four years after his first Trump firebomb, Popovich was even more lethal in his remarks about the President as told to Dave Zirin (The Nation). He was his Popovichian best.
“If Trump had a brain, even if it was 99 percent cynical, he would come out and say something to unify people. But he doesn’t care about bringing people together. Even now. That’s how deranged he is. It’s all about him. It’s all about what benefits him personally. It’s never about the greater good.”
In a reversal from his usual hiding in the White House since the protests began, Donald Trump was briefly visible on phone calls to the nation’s governors. He called them weak and suggested they dominate the protestors, like this was a sporting event and all the cops had to do was play defense. In fact, he was the very thing that the protestors are disgusted with, a dictator who lacks basic humanity for black and brown people. Trump suggested the police throw the protestors in jail for 10 years, obviously ignorant of the way the justice system works. The police have no influence on adjudication. That’s a prosecutor, judge, and jury job. Just like it’s the voters job to get rid of him in November.
Popovich has figured out half the problem, even if Trump is too narcissistic to look beyond his own self-interests.
“Say simply that Black Lives Matter. Just say those three words. But he won’t and he can’t. He can’t because it’s more important to him to mollify the small group of followers who validate his insanity. But it’s more than just Trump. The system has to change. I’ll do whatever I can do to help because that’s what leaders do. But he can’t do anything to put us on a positive path because he’s not a leader.
“In the end what we have is a fool in place of a president, while the person who really runs the country, Senator Mitch McConnell destroys the United States for generations to come. McConnell has destroyed and degraded our judicial system. He has tried to destroy health care. He’s destroyed the environment. He’s the master and Trump’s the stooge and what’s funny is that Trump doesn’ even know it.
“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 that can’t say Black Lives Matter. That’s why he hides in the basement. He is a coward. He creates a situation and then 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.”