Matthew McConaughey issued a statement via Instagram in response to the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in his hometown of Uvalde, Texas on May 24.
The violent attack left 19 elementary school students and two adults dead, with multiple other victims being treated in hospitals for injuries sustained. The gunman died after being shot by responding officers, according to local police.
McConaughey, who shut down rumors that he would be running for governor of Texas late last year, took to social media to address the mass shooting.
“As you all are aware there was another mass shooting today, this time in my hometown of Uvalde, Texas,” McConaughey wrote. “Once again, we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us.”
The Oscar winner continued, “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?’ We cannot exhale once again, make excuses and accept these tragic realities as the status quo.”
As McConaughey captioned, mass shootings are “an epidemic we can control.”
“As Americans, Texans, mothers and fathers, it’s time we re-evaluate, and renegotiate our wants from our needs,” McConaughey wrote. “We have to rearrange our values and find a common ground above this devastating American reality that has tragically become our children’s issue. Whichever side of the aisle we may stand on, we all know we can do better.”
The statement concluded in part, “Action must be taken so that no parent has to experience what the parents in Uvalde and the others before them have endured.”
President Joe Biden issued an emergency call for gun control following the Uvalde massacre.
“When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby?” Biden said following the domestic terrorist attack. “Why are we willing to live with this carnage? Why do we keep letting this happen? It’s time we turned this pain into action.”
H.R. 8, a bill that passed the House in March 2021 to require a background check for all gun sales, has been stalled in the Senate for over a year. 10 Republican votes are needed to overcome a filibuster.