The Uvalde shooting last month that rocked our country has sparked a national conversation about gun control, mental health, and school safety. Matthew McConaughey, a native of Uvalde, TX, has joined the conversation by visiting the White House today and making a speech about the Second Amendment and gun regulation.
The unspeakable violence that took place at Robb Elementary School last month shook the whole nation. The 18-year-old shooter walked into the building and killed 19 children and two teachers. McConaughey is just one of many actors and celebrities who has spoken up about this grave injustice and what it means for our country. He visited the White House today to give remarks on this issue.
Matthew McConaughey Speaks at the White House About "Responsible Gun Ownership"
Several days after the shooting, McConaughey visited his hometown of Uvalde to meet with families and community members. Today, he turned his attention to the White House to urge gun reform. He began by insisting on starting with the family and people's mental health.
"We need to invest in mental health care. We need to pay for schools," he said. "We need to restrain sensationalized media coverage. We need to restore our family values. We need to restore our American values. And we need responsible gun ownership."
His speech then took a quick turn toward gun control regulation. "We need background checks," he added. "We need to raise the minimum age to purchase an AR-15 rifle to 21. We need a waiting period for those rifles. We need red flag laws and consequences for those who abuse them."
McConaughey insisted that "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," he continued. "These regulations are not a step back. They're a step forward for a civil society and the Second Amendment."
This take was not received well by the right, considering the fact that McConaughey staunchly called for much stricter gun regulation. He is also being criticized for being overly performative. At one point he slammed his fist on the podium when he was talking about a pair of green Converse shoes that one of the victims was wearing when she was shot was how she was identified.
McConaughey noted that he is a gun owner himself, but he is still demanding for more regulation. His wife Camila sat nearby and held back tears as he spoke about the victims of this horrendous shooting.
While it's commendable that McConaughey is supporting the victims and their families while calling for better mental health care and stronger family values, he's demanding the same kind of gun control that has never been proven to work in various cities across the U.S. Major cities such as Detroit and Chicago have some of the strictest gun laws in the country yet see the highest rates of gun violence in the nation. We're much, much better off focusing on how we can prevent troubled teenagers from diving into such a deep hole of isolation that they resort to violence of any kind.