Texas school shooting: Matthew McConaughey leads tributes to victims as 19 children and two adults killed in his Texas hometown
Hollywood star Matthew McConaughey has led tributes to the victims of a mass shooting at an elementary school in his Texas hometown – and has called on Americans to combat the “epidemic” of gun violence.
In a statement released on Tuesday evening, the 52-year-old actor said “whichever side of the aisle we may stand on, we all know we can do better”.
At least 19 children and two adults have been reported dead after a teenage gunman opened fire at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
The shooting is the deadliest at a US primary school since the infamous Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, in which 20 children and six adults were killed almost a decade ago.
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“As you all are aware there was another mass shooting today, this time in my home town of Uvalde, Texas,” McConaughey said.
“Once again, we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us.
“This is an epidemic we can control, and whichever side of the aisle we may stand on, we all know we can do better.
“We must 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.
“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.”
James Corden, Taylor Swift, Amy Schumer and Chris Evans were also among the famous faces expressing “rage and grief” in the wake of Tuesday’s atrocity.
Addressing the shooting in a monologue on The Late Late Show, Corden said that on the issue of gun laws, America is “one of the most backward places in the world”.
“When I dropped my kids off at school this morning and kissed them goodbye, it doesn’t cross your mind that that could ever be the last goodbye,” he said.
“And the thought of that phone call, that your child is the victim in a mass shooting is beyond comprehension as a human being.”
Pop megastar Swift shared a video of Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who delivered an emotional message in a press conference before the NBA western conference finals.
“Filled with rage and grief, and so broken by the murders in Uvalde,” she wrote in a tweet.
“By Buffalo, Laguna Woods and so many others. By the ways in which we, as a nation, have become conditioned to unfathomable and unbearable heartbreak.
“Steve’s words ring so true and cut so deep.”
Oscar’s co-host Schumer said: “We are grieving with the Uvalde community, a predominantly Latinx community, and everyone else impacted by yet another senseless act of violence in our schools.
“This is yet another tragic example of how pervasive this public health crisis is in our country.”
Captain America star Evans wrote in all capitals: “F****** enough!”
His fellow Marvel superhero Simu Liu called for “accountability”.
“Heartbroken for the families, friends and classmates of Robb Elementary School,” he said.
“My deepest condolences go out to those affected, and my mind yearns for accountability.
“A system that allows for this many mass shootings simply must change. It’s time to demand action.”
British actor Jason Isaacs asked: “When will the right to bear arms be balanced against the right to live free from fear of slaughter by arms?”
Oscar-winning producer Finneas also expressed anger, writing: “Anyone saying ‘now isn’t the time to talk about gun control’ doesn’t care that kids got f****** murdered today.”
Other celebrities expressing their shock and horror included Kylie Jenner, George Takei, and Jake Paul.
Posting on her Instagram story, reality star Jenner, who recently gave birth to her second child with rapper Travis Scott, said: “Another school shooting. Devastating.
“Breaks my heart for these families.”
Veteran Star Trek actor Takei added: “There are no words. And there are no actions ever taken.
“If we want things to change, we must demand it from our leaders.”
Poet Amanda Gorman, who shot to fame following a reading at US President Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony in January 2021, penned a poem and posted it on social media.
It read: “Schools scared to death.
“The truth is, one education under desks, Stooped low from bullets; That plunge when we ask.
“Where our children Shall live & if.”
Sharing a link to gun violence charity Everytown, Gorman captioned her post: “Americans—you know enough is enough.
“If you do anything today, let it not be just to grieve, but to act.”