Matthew McConaughey's emotional plea at the White House and heart-felt essay on gun responsibility

Enough is enough
The actor met with President Biden and lawmakers
Not a step back
Gun control should be an issue all Americans can agree upon
Not a cure all
Camila and Matthew visited Uvalde together
Maite's story
Dreams that will never be
Matthew enjoyed using guns while growing up
McConaughey's article in The Austin American Statesman
Keeping guns away from those who wish to do harm is key
Backgrounds checks need to be mandatory
At least 21 to buy an assault rifle
Red Flag Laws in all of the US
A national waiting period for assault rifle purchases
McConaughey's visit to Uvalde
A visit home following the horrific event
Born in Uvalde
Matthew's mother was a teacher in Uvalde
A Texan boy
McConaughey considered running for governor
Matthew has not been too outspoken regarding guns laws
Matthew called for a ban on assault weapons for civilians
Enough is enough

Matthew McConaughey is using his fame for a good cause. The actor, a native of Uvalde, Texas, made an emotional plea in the White House briefing room on June 7 regarding the need for new gun control legislation in the United States.

The actor met with President Biden and lawmakers

McConaughey met with President Biden and a group of lawmakers on Capitol Hill before giving a moving speech about the need for gun reform.

"We start by making the loss of these lives matter"

The actor told reporters, "We start by making the loss of these lives matter. We start with laws that save innocent lives and don't infringe on our Second Amendment rights."

Not a step back

In his plea, Matthew said that the United States needs to move forward to protect society. "These regulations are not a step back. They're a step forward — for a civil society, and, and the Second Amendment," he said.

Gun control should be an issue all Americans can agree upon

McConaughey admitted that gun reform would not solve all of America's problems with violence, but it should be an issue that all Americans can agree upon.

Not a cure all

"Look, is this a cure all? Hell, no. But people are hurting. Families are, parents are. And look, as divided as our country is, this gun responsibility issue is one that we agree on more than we don't. It really is. Look, this should be a nonpartisan issue."

Camila and Matthew visited Uvalde together

Along with his wife Camila Alves, Matthew visited the victims' families following the massacre that took the lives of nineteen children at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde. The actor shared the heart-wrenching stories of these families while speaking at the White House.

Maite's story

The actor explained how the green Converse sneakers that ten-year-old Maite Rodriguez, who passed due to the shooting, were the only way her loved ones could identify her.

Dreams that will never be

Maite had drawn a heart on the toe of her shoes to represent her love for nature, and the youngster had dreamed of becoming a marine biologist one day.

Matthew enjoyed using guns while growing up

McConnaughey told reporters that he had his first experiences with guns while growing up in Uvalde and learned to shoot a BB gun and a 410 shotgun. The actor said that it is time for laws to be passed to keep irresponsible and mentally unsound people from being able to get ahold of guns.

"Responsible gun owners are fed up"

"Responsible gun owners are fed up with the Second Amendment being abused and hijacked by some deranged individuals," McConnaughey said.
The actor went on to talk about red flag laws, bolstering mental health, background checks, and waiting periods as possible actions that could help avoid tragedies from occurring.

McConaughey's article in The Austin American Statesman

McConaughey also wrote an article on his thoughts and feeling regarding gun control for The Austin American Statesman. In a personal and poignant essay, the actor said, "I believe that responsible, law-abiding Americans have a Second Amendment right, enshrined by our founders, to bear arms. I also believe we have a cultural obligation to take steps toward slowing down the senseless killing of our children."

"It's time we talk about gun responsibility"

The Texas native and father of three went on to write, "The debate about gun control has delivered nothing but status quo. It's time we talk about gun responsibility."

Keeping guns away from those who wish to do harm is key

The actor stressed the importance of screening to keep guns away from those who wish to do harm with them, "Keeping firearms out of the hands of dangerous people is not only the responsible thing to do, it is the best way to protect the Second Amendment. We can do both."

Backgrounds checks need to be mandatory

McConaughey wrote about what he believes needs to be done to preserve the Second Amendment and keep Americans safe. First of all, Matthew stresses the importance of mandatory background checks for those who wish to purchase guns. The actor said that the lack of a background check is "incompetence."

At least 21 to buy an assault rifle

Second, the actor said, "Unless you are in the military, you should be 21 years old to purchase an assault rifle. I'm not talking about 12-gauge shotguns or lever-action hunting rifles. I'm talking about the weapon of choice for mass murderers, AR-15s."

Red Flag Laws in all of the US

Matthew believes the third change that needs to occur is making Red Flag Laws "the law of the land." The actor pointed out that these laws allow close contacts or law enforcement to ask the court to prevent people deemed at risk of harming themselves or others from being able to buy guns.

A national waiting period for assault rifle purchases

The fourth action that McConaughey believes needs to occur to prevent gun-related tragedies is the institution of "a national waiting period for assault rifles." The actor pointed out that these weapons are often purchased in "a fit of rage" and that studies show that "waiting periods reduced homicides by 17 percent."

"It's time for real leaders to step up and do what's right"

McConaughey concluded his essay by saying, "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'."

McConaughey's visit to Uvalde

Following the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School that resulted in the deaths of 19 students and two teachers in Matthew McConaughey's hometown of Uvalde, Texas, the award-winning actor reached out to offer to support to the community.

A visit home following the horrific event

McConaughey, 52, made a visit to the town where he grew up to offer his support to the families and friends of those affected by the horrendous and tragic shooting on May 24.

"Thank you Matthew for helping to heal our community"

Rep. Tony Gonzales shared a Tweet thanking Matthew for his visit to Uvalde Civic Centre on May 27, writing, "Thank you Matthew for helping to heal our community. Your visit brought so many smiling faces to Uvalde. See you soon my friend."

Photo: Twitter/TonyGonzales4TX

"Evil exists in the world"

Gonzales, a Republican representing Uvalde in Congress, also wrote, "This week was a solemn reminder that evil exists in the world, but we will never let it break us. We'll unite to be an even more powerful reminder that love never fails & together, we can change things. Appreciate Uvalde native Matthew McConaughey helping us heal."

Born in Uvalde

Matthew McConaughey was born in Uvalde, Texas in 1969. This latest tragedy struck very close to home.

Photo: Instagram@officiallymcconaughey

Matthew's mother was a teacher in Uvalde

According to People, McConaughey's mother was also a teacher who worked for years at St. Philip's Episcopal School a mile from Robb Elementary School, the site of the shooting.

A Texan boy

Matthew lived in Uvalde for the first ten years of his life, and in 2020 he visited the city for a comedy show along with his mother Kay and brother Mike.

Photo: Instagram@officiallymcconaughey

"Uvalde...the most perfect place to raise children"

The trio partook in a question and answer session with the public in which Matthew's mother, Kay, said that "Uvalde was the most perfect place to raise children."

"We are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us"

After news of the shooting broke, Matthew released a statement on Twitter and Instagram that said, "we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us."

"What is it that we truly value?"

McConaughey wrote, "The true call to action now is for every American to take a longer and deeper look in the mirror, and ask ourselves, 'What is it that we truly value? How do we repair the problem? What small sacrifices can we individually take today, to preserve a healthier and safer nation, state, and neighborhood tomorrow?'"

"As Americans, Texans...it's time we re-evaluate"

The 'Dazed and Confused' actor continued, "We cannot exhale once again, make excuses, and accept these tragic realities as the status quo. As Americans, Texans, mothers and fathers, it's time we re-evaluate, and renegotiate our wants from our needs."

"We have to rearrange our values..."

He urged Americans to examine what is really important to them, "We have to rearrange our values and find a common ground above this devastating American reality that has tragically become our children's issue."

"An epidemic we can control"

Matthew then made a call to action, saying, "This is an epidemic we can control, and whichever side of the aisle we may stand on, we all know we can do better. Action must be taken so that no parent has to experience what the parents in Uvalde and the others before them have endured."

"...no words can comprehend or heal your loss"

He also offered his condolences and prayers to the families affected by the tragedy: "And to those who dropped off their loved ones today not knowing it was goodbye, no words can comprehend or heal your loss, but if prayers can provide comfort, we will keep them coming."

McConaughey considered running for governor

McConaughey, who considered running as governor of the state of Texas last year per NPR, despite his outcry, has not offered any practical solutions to end attacks such as the one that occurred in Uvalde.

Matthew has not been too outspoken regarding guns laws

Although Matthew has been rather tight-lipped about his political views for the most part over the years, in an interview with Joe Rogan in 2020, the actor shared his thoughts on the hot-button issue.

Photo: The Joe Rogan Experience/YouTube

"It's too easy to get a gun sometimes"

McConaughey said it is "too easy to get a gun sometimes, that there should be that background check."

"I was taught the right way to respect that tool"

In 2018, he spoke at the March for Our Lives rally in Austin, saying, "I've got a lot of friends who are gun owners. I've got a lot of friends who are NRA. I grew up hunting. We had responsible gun ownership, but I was taught the right way to respect that tool."

Matthew called for a ban on assault weapons for civilians

The actor then called for a ban on assault weapons for civilians, restricting high-capacity magazines and strengthening background checks.

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