JJ Redick should have stopped while ahead on Ja Morant

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NBA commentator JJ Redick isn’t a political analyst. He has a right to speak his mind just the same as anyone else, of course, because he’s a free person living in a semi-free nation.

However, we also should consider his relative expertise.

When Redick offers an opinion about basketball, I’d do well to listen. He knows a lot more than me about the subject.

On the subject of guns, though, and that aspect of the Ja Morant situation, he’s out of his depth, as he recently made very clear.

“As far as we know, all of these things [recent incidents involving Morant] have been investigated and no laws have been broken,” Redick said.

“I’m not condoning the behavior, I’m not saying there should be no punishment. There should be consequences. You are the face of the league. You are representing the NBA. You are a role model to young kids. I don’t think half-a-season [suspension] is the right answer,” he continued.

At this point, I don’t actually disagree all that much. Morant wasn’t handling his firearm particularly well, and since he is such a well-known figure, that could have ramifications, so I can see legitimate reasons why the NBA might want to step in.

But Redick doesn’t stop there.

Oh no, he keeps going.

“The guns on social media… we talk about consequences. Look, in our country right now, gun culture is pervasive. We’ve got mass shooting after mass shooting and nobody is doing a damn thing about it. So I get why we’re so sensitive to this,” Redick said.

“But there’s no consequence for Texas governor Greg Abottt telling his constituents that they should go buy more guns and then we have mass shooting after mass shooting in Texas. There’s no consequence for an elected Tennessee official sending a Christmas card holding AR-15s with his young family and then there’s a shooting in his very district. There are no consequences to that. So why are we trying to lay down the hammer on a 23-year-old who didn’t break a law. Explain that to me.”

First, there are potential consequences for Gov. Greg Abbott. It’s called “reelection.” If he doesn’t do what the people of Texas want, he’ll be out of a job and won’t be able to get elected to anything else.

Politicians do have consequences for their actions.

What Redick is doing, though, is getting way outside of his lane. You can’t defend Morant to any degree and then pretend that guns are somehow wrong and can never be defended or even shown. That’s a major double standard.

Especially since that Tennessee official was handling the guns properly.

Redick, who apparently is interested in a head coaching job in the NBA, appears to be trying to act like Steve Kerr by lambasting guns and the Second Amendment while knowing nothing at all about it.

Elected officials don’t get suspended because they pass or block a law, no, but to pretend there aren’t potential consequences is to ignore the harsh reality of the electoral process. What I don’t hear Redick bleating about, though, are the unelected officials like the ATF who can just decide on a whim to reclassify something like a forced reset trigger as a machine gun, turning numerous people into felons overnight.

Those are the people who face no consequences. The people who decided pistol braces were suddenly illegal or that bump stocks were a no-go. None of them faced consequences for their anti-gun and anti-constitutional actions.

What Redick is upset about is that these lawmakers don’t face the consequences he thinks they should because most of the people who vote for them disagree. That’s what he’s bent out of shape about, but he’s too ignorant on the topic to actually articulate it.

Redick needs to stick to talking about basketball. He’s smarter on subjects of little consequence than he is on things that actually matter.