Matthew McConaughey, a native of Uvalde, Texas, and father of three kids spoke to reporters at the White House after meeting with President Joe Biden.
Actor Matthew McConaughey delivered a moving speech before reporters at the White House on Tuesday, June 7 as he shared stories from the families whose kids died at the Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas last month. Nineteen children and two teachers died when 18-year-old Salvador Ramos fired at them inside the school premises.
Camila Alves, the wife of the Academy Award-winning actor, accompanied him. She held a pair of green Converse sneakers which belonged to one of the kids who died in the shooting. In his speech, Matthew shared that he and Camila have been talking to the victims’ families and have been meeting with various officials for measures to stop the violence.
Matthew McConaughey: Uvalde is where I learned responsible gun ownership
“How can the loss of these lives matter? While we honor and acknowledge the victims, we need to recognize this time, it seems something is different,” he says.
The Dallas Buyers Club star then shared how his town has taught him about using guns properly, including being a responsible gun owner.
“Uvalde is where I was taught to revere the power and capability of the tool that we call a gun. Uvalde is where I learned responsible gun ownership.”
Upon hearing the news, the actor and his family immediately went to Uvalde. From their vehicle, he could feel the shock of the people, their pain, anger, and disbelief.
The families want their children’s dreams to live on
Matthew went on to tell the stories of the kids, whose dreams include going to an art school in Paris, one who wants to be a marine biologist, and one young girl who was discovering her faith in God.
Additionally, the actor shared that he and Camila were able to talk with the family of Irma Garcia and the dreams she and her husband had once they retired. Her husband would later die of a heart attack upon hearing the news of her death. Irma was one of the teachers who died while saving children during the shooting.
While speaking to the families, Matthew McConaughey stated that they only asked for one thing.
“You know what every one of these parents wanted, what they asked us for? What every parent separately expressed in their own way to Camila and me? That they want their children’s dreams to live on. That they want their children’s dreams to continue; to accomplish something after they are gone. They want to make their loss of life matter,” he said.
Moreover, Matthew stated that people he has talked to agreed that they want safe and secure schools and gun laws that won’t make it easy for people to simply buy a gun.
Matthew McConaughey: Responsible gun owners had enough of the abuse
Seeing it as a “window of opportunity,” the actor thinks it’s time for people to act and stop abusing the use of the second amendment. He called on for the raising of the age to buy rifles to 21, universal background checking, and the implementation of the red flag laws.
“These are reasonable, practical, tactical regulations to our nation, states, communities, schools, and homes. Responsible gun owners are fed up with the Second Amendment being abused and hijacked by some deranged individuals. These regulations are not a step back. They’re a step forward for civil society and the Second Amendment.”
The issue is not about party affiliations, he added.
“We got to take a sober, humble, and honest look in the mirror and rebrand ourselves based on what we truly value. What we truly value. We got to get some real courage and honor our immortal obligations instead of our party affiliations.”
“Enough with the counterpunching. Enough of the invalidation of the other side. Let’s come to the common table that represents the American people. Find a middle ground, the place where most of us Americans live anyway. Especially on this issue. Because I promise you, America, you and me, we are not as divided as we are being told we are,” he added.
Matthew McConaughey: It’s time we talk about gun responsibility
Aside from talking to President Biden and lawmakers, Matthew recently wrote an opinion piece that was published in the Austin American Stateman. He reiterated the importance of gun responsibility and steps that can be made.
“This is not a choice between guns or no guns. It’s the responsible choice; the reasonable choice. It’s a quintessentially American choice: Where I have the right to be me, you have the freedom to be you, and we have the responsibility to be us,” he wrote.
“For ourselves, our children, and our fellow Americans—we have a duty to be responsible gun owners. Please do yours and protect the Second Amendment through gun responsibility. It’s time for real leaders to step up and do what’s right, so we can each and all just keep livin’.”