San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich criticized the U.S. for its “rampant” racial injustice at a social justice summit on Saturday.
“I live in a country I did not know exists,” Popovich said, according to a video posted on Twitter.
“I knew there were racists, I understand that, but I had no idea it was to this level, and that the injustice and the seeking of power was so rampant that we are in the position we’re in now,” he added.
“I don’t have the answers, but it pisses me off, it hurts me, it confounds me, and I wonder where the hell do I live.”
Popovich has regularly spoken out about social justice issues during his time as one of the NBA’s top coaches.
Following the mass shooting at a Texas elementary school that claimed 21 lives in May, he denounced state lawmakers’ inaction on gun legislation.
The inaugural Social Justice Summit this weekend, organized by Jay Z’s entertainment agency Roc Nation in partnership with the United Justice Coalition, brought attention to criminal justice reform and other issues disproportionately affecting the Black community.
Popovich made an unannounced appearance to award Innocence Project co-founder Barry Scheck for his contributions to criminal justice reform.
The Innocence Project is an organization that seeks absolve incarcerated individuals, many of whom are Black, of crimes for which they were wrongly convicted.
Popovich praised Scheck for his role in exonerating a total of 375 wrongly incarcerated people since the foundation of the Innocence Project.