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Donald Trump flouted many pundits’ projections on Tuesday night, toppling Hillary Clinton in a stunning victory in the 2016 presidential election that will make the real-estate magnate and reality-TV star the 45th president of the United States. The election’s outcome has elicited a wide array of reactions in the sports world. One of the strongest came Wednesday afternoon from Detroit Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy.
As the Pistons prepared for Wednesday night’s road game against the Phoenix Suns, Van Gundy held court at Detroit’s shootaround. Evidently, he wasn’t too interested in talking about how good Tobias Harris looks, or the challenge of continuing to work without injured point guard Reggie Jackson, or the problems for Detroit’s defense likely to be posed by a Suns club led by sharpshooting sophomore Devin Booker. Instead, the Pistons coach — no stranger to speaking his mind on social issues — chose to discuss the results of Tuesday’s balloting and what he feels it means for the U.S. moving forward. From Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy noticed the quietness on this morning’s bus ride to Talking Stick Resort Arena.
He wondered whether his team was still thinking about its embarrassing 32-point loss to the Los Angeles Clippers two nights ago. But backup center Aron Baynes let him know that wasn’t it. He told Van Gundy that the players’ thoughts were on Donald Trump winning the U.S. presidential election Tuesday night.
That result disgusted Van Gundy. In a six-minute diatribe today, Van Gundy unloaded on the unconventional candidate who rose from being an underdog in GOP primaries to occupying the most powerful office in the world.
“I don’t think anybody can deny this guy is openly and brazenly racist and misogynistic,” Van Gundy said. “We have just thrown a good part of our population under the bus, and I have problems with thinking this is where we are as a country.”
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Van Gundy then proceeded to let go with both barrels, as detailed by Aaron McMann of MLive.com:
“It’s just, we have said — and my daughters, the three of them — our society has said, ‘No, we think you should be second-class citizens. We want you to be second-class citizens.’ And we embrace a guy who is openly misogynist as a our leader. I don’t know how we get past that.”
Van Gundy called Trump’s words toward minorities, especially African-Americans, Latinos and women, “despicable” and said he’s having a hard time digesting the election results. Trump beat former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the popular vote, 290-228, but trailed in the popular vote. […]
“This isn’t your normal candidate. I don’t even know if I have political differences with him. I don’t even know what his politics [are],” Van Gundy said. “I don’t know, other than to build a wall and ‘I hate people of color,’ and women are to be treated as sex objects and as servants to men. I don’t know how you get past that. I don’t know how you walk into the booth and vote for that.
“I understand problems with the economy. I understand all the problems with Hillary Clinton, I do. But certain things in our country should disqualify you.”
More, from Ellis:
“And the fact that millions and millions of Americans don’t think that racism and sexism disqualifies you to be our leader, in our country … . We presume to tell other countries about human-rights abuses and everything else. We better never do that again, when our leaders talk to China or anybody else about human-rights abuses.
“We just elected an openly, brazen misogynist leader and we should keep our mouths shut and realize that we need to be learning maybe from the rest of the world, because we don’t got anything to teach anybody.
“It’s embarrassing. I have been ashamed of a lot of things that have happened in this country, but I can’t say I’ve ever been ashamed of our country until today. Until today. We all have to find our way to move forward, but that was — and I’m not even trying to make a political statement. To me, that’s beyond politics.”
“I’m not a religious guy, but what the hell Bible are they reading? I’m dead serious,” Van Gundy said. “What Bible are you reading? And you’re supposed to be — it’s different. There are a lot of different groups we can be upset at. But you’re Christians. You’re supposed to be — at least you pride yourself on being the moral compass of our society. And you said, ‘Yeah, the guy can talk about women like that. I’m fine with that.’ He can disparage every ethnic group, and I’m fine with that. […] You don’t get to come out and talk about people like that, and then lead our country and have millions of Americans embrace you.”
After sharing those remarks, Van Gundy can probably expect an icy embrace from the crowd in Arizona, which went Trump’s way on Tuesday. It doesn’t sound like Stan’s ready to welcome them with open arms, either.
More SVG on Trump: "I’m having a hard time being with people. I’m going to walk into this arena tonight and realize that …"
— Aaron McMann (@AaronMcMann) November 9, 2016
SVG con'td: "most of these people voted for him. Like, shit, I don't have any respect for that." Pistons play at Phoenix tonight.
— Aaron McMann (@AaronMcMann) November 9, 2016
Might want to tune into this one early. Pre-game introductions might, um, be pretty interesting.
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