Uvalde native Matthew McConaughey visits Biden, seeks change

Actor Matthew McConaughey delivered an impassioned speech in the White House briefing room on Tuesday, calling for stricter gun laws following last month’s deadly school shooting in his hometown of Texas.

Following a meeting with lawmakers on Capitol Hill and President Biden in the Oval Office, McConaughey took the podium and lent star power to the push to tighten the nation’s gun laws by expressing a range of emotions: anger, sadness and hope that elected Officials doing this could finally act.

“How can we give meaning to the loss of these lives?” he asked at the beginning of his remarks, hinting that change might be possible after the massacre in Uvalde, Texas, which left 19 fourth graders and two teachers dead.

“We’re in a window right now that we’ve never been in before,” he said. “A window that looks like real change, real change can happen.”

McConaughey spoke about how he and his wife, Camila, drove to Uvalde in the days after the shooting and described his interactions with several victims’ families.

He choked and held up a laminated drawing of Alithia Ramirez, whose parents told him she wanted to be an artist. McConaughey flashed angrily at the podium after holding up the green Converse shoes of another victim, Maite Rodriguez, and explaining that the shoes allowed her family to identify her body.

“Each parent has expressed in their own way that they want their children’s dreams to live on,” the actor said. “They want their children to continue to achieve after they die. They want to make their loss of life matter.”

“We want gun laws that make it harder for bad guys to get the damn guns,” he explained of what that meant.

McConaughey, who recalled learning about firearm safety with an airgun as a child in Uvalde, called for “responsible gun ownership” and indicated that there is a broad, bipartisan majority in favor of expanding background checks and raising the minimum age to purchase assault guns to 21 and the passage of red flag laws.

“These are sensible, practical regulations,” he said. “Responsible gun owners are fed up with the 2nd Amendment being abused and kidnapped by a mentally ill individual.”

Without specifically addressing Republicans, who for years have blocked Democrats’ efforts to enact gun controls, McConaughey said the issue should not be partisan and implored lawmakers from both parties to act.

“We can’t really be leaders,” he said, “if we’re just living for re-election.”

After McConaughey left the briefing room without answering questions, Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the White House was “encouraged” by the progress of the talks, although it was unlikely an agreement would go as far as Biden — and now McConaughey—it called for .

Biden, who delivered a prime-time speech last week urging action on gun laws, met Tuesday with Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), one of the four-member bipartisan group working to chart a gun safety compromise , Jean- said Pierre.

“We’ll see how these negotiations go,” she said, explaining that Biden “believes every step is a step forward.”

https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-06-07/actor-matthew-mcconaughey-a-visited-white-house-and-delivered-emotional-plea-for-change Uvalde native Matthew McConaughey visits Biden, seeks change

Alley Einstein

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