Greg Popovich on Black History Month: ‘We live in a racist country that hasn’t figured it out yet’

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May 22, 2017; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich gives direction to his team against the Golden State Warriors during the first half in game four of the Western conference finals of the NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich spoke his mind about the importance of celebrating Black History Month, saying bluntly that “we live in a racist country that hasn’t figured it out yet.”

When asked why he thinks celebrating Black History Month in the NBA is important, Popovich gave a straight-to-the-point answer. “The league is made up of a lot of black guys,” said the veteran coach. “To honor that and understand it is pretty simplistic. How would you ignore that?”

Popovich, who is known to be outspoken when it comes to political matters, went on to acknowledge the climate of racism that continues to be prevalent in society.

“But more importantly, we live in a racist country that hasn’t figured it out yet,” he continued. “And it’s always important to bring attention to it, even if it angers some people. The point is, you have to keep it in front of everybody’s nose so they understand it still hasn’t been taken care of and we have a lot of work to do.”

Last year, Popovich also advocated a similar opinion, saying that Black History Month is a celebration of some of the good things that have happened, as well as a reminder that there is a lot more work that needs to be done.

The long-time Spurs coach, who has won five NBA titles with the organization, also addressed white privilege in the country. He said that people who are born white in the United States have a huge advantage educationally, economically, culturally. He also noted there are various systemic roadblocks that people of color have to face.

Known for is one-word answers during interviews with NBA’s press, Popovich has been rather outspoken when it comes to social issues and politics. In October, he called President Donald Trump “a soulless coward who thinks that he can only become large by belittling others.”