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NBA Coach Rips Ted Cruz For Plan For Armed Guards In Schools–And Cruz Is Not Handling It All That Well

Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich questioned Ted Cruz's plan to place armed guards in schools: 'Is that freedom?'

Texas Senator Ted Cruz; NBA Coach Gregg Popovich
San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, @tom_orsborn/Twitter

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich went after Republican Texas Senator Ted Cruz for his past proposal for gun control in the wake of the fatal school shooting in Nashville, Tennessee that claimed the lives of three children and three adults.

In a proposal that was blocked in the Senate on March 30, Cruz suggested schools should staff as many armed guards as there are at banks.

Popovich, who has been outspoken before about American gun violence, was fed up in the wake of yet another U.S. shooting and called out legislators for their inaction on gun control during a pre-game press event on Sunday.

The NBA star coach slammed Cruz's reintroduction of the Securing Our Schools Act and the Protect Our Children’s Schools Act introduced last September which would double the number of school resource officers.

Popovich argued in front of reporters that Republicans were "gonna cloak all this stuff in the myth of the Second Amendment.”

“You know, it’s a myth, it’s a joke, it’s just a game they play. I mean it's freedom."

"Is it freedom for kids to go to school and try to socialize and try to learn and be scared to death that they might die that day?" he asked.

Popovich then called out Cruz's solution to U.S. gun violence.

"Well, Ted Cruz will fix them because he's gonna double the number of cops in schools. That's what he wants to do."
"Well, that'll create a good environment."

You can watch a clip here.

"Coach Pop" was lauded for making his public statements denouncing Cruz's proposal and the GOP for their support of the Second Amendment.

Cruz whined about Popovich's statement in his The Verdict podcast on Wednesday.

"He’s a liberal Democrat," said Cruz of Popovich.

“You see this in the NBA, you see it in the NFL, these incredibly rich athletes who hypocritically disdain their fans… and who lecture them almost inevitably from a point of ignorance.”

The Texas GOP Senator noted armed guards are present at NBA games and Popovich is “surrounded by armed security most of the time," adding:

“I guarantee if someone stood up and said we’re gonna pull all the police officers from Gregg Popovich’s neighborhood, he’d be horrified."

On March 30, Cruz said on the Senate floor:

“You know, when you go to the bank and you deposit money in the bank, there are armed police officers at the bank. Why? Because we want to protect the money we save."
"Why on earth do we protect a stupid deposit more than our children? … We have an opportunity right now to double the police officers on campus and keep kids safe.”

Early Monday morning–nearly two weeks after Cruz's proposal to increase security at schools like at financial institutions–five people were fatally shot and at least eight were wounded when a gunman opened fire at the Old National Bank in Louisville, Kentucky.

This is not the first time Cruz was slammed for his suggestions on gun safety.

After the May 24, 2022, elementary school shooting in Uvalde, Texas–where 21 people were killed by a gunman–Cruz proposed that schools should have a "single point of entry" to prevent shootings on campus.

Days later after the shooting, Cruz said in a Fox News interview:

"Fire exits should only open out."
"At that single point of entry, we should have multiple armed police officers or, if need be, military veterans trained to provide security and keep our children safe."

Following the tragic incident, he refused to cancel his appearance at the NRA's leadership conference in Houston.

He defended his position in a CBS interview, claiming the NRA:

"Stands up for your rights, stands up for my rights, and stands up for the rights of every American."