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Here's what Matthew McConaughey said about the shooting in his hometown

Matthew McConaughey attends a movie premiere on Dec. 12, 2021, in Los Angeles.
Matt Winkelmeyer
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Getty Images
Matthew McConaughey attends a movie premiere on Dec. 12, 2021, in Los Angeles.

Actor and Uvalde native Matthew McConaughey took to social media Wednesday to address the shooting in his hometown.

In a lengthy statement, he offered prayers to those affected and urged Americans to reassess their values, saying "we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us" without specifically mentioning guns or reforms.

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

McConaughey has publicly considered running for Texas governor in recent years, without specifying which political party he would align with. He announced in November that he would explore other forms of service instead.

"As a simple kid born in the little town of Uvalde, Texas, it never occurred to me that I would one day be considered for political leadership," McConaughey said at the time. "It's a humbling and inspiring path to ponder. It is also a path that I'm choosing not to take at this moment."

In his post on Wednesday morning, he called on Americans to "renegotiate our wants from our needs" and find common ground "above this devastating reality that has tragically become our children's issue."

McConaughey urged people not to accept such tragedies as the status quo. But rather than calling for specific policy changes or gun control reform — as Twitter users noted in the comments — he proposed a more introspective approach:

"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?"

He is among the many celebrities who have taken to social media to share their thoughts and condolences in the wake of Tuesday's shooting.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Rachel Treisman (she/her) is a writer and editor for the Morning Edition live blog, which she helped launch in early 2021.