Academy Award-winning actor and Uvalde, Texas, native Matthew McConaughey said "action must be taken" and the United States must "rearrange our values" following the school shooting in his hometown that left 19 children dead.
At least 21 victims, including 19 students and two teachers, have been confirmed dead after a lone 18-year-old gunman went on a shooting rampage in a single classroom at Robb Elementary School in the small Texas town on Tuesday. Before entering the school, the shooter was on the run from police after he shot his grandmother in the face.
McConaughey took to Instagram after the shooting to share his heartbreak and make a call for action.
"Once again we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us," the "Dallas Buyers Club" actor said.
He called on Americans to ask themselves several questions and urged the country not to accept mass shootings as the norm.
"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 asked.
"As Americans, Texans, mother and fathers, it’s time we re-evaluate, and renegotiate our wants from our needs," the father of three continued. "We have to rearrange our values and find a common ground above this devastating American reality that has tragically become our children’s issue."
The University Health Hospital in San Antonio is caring for four patients connected to the shooting, including the gunman’s 66-year-old grandmother, who was shot before the attack at the school, according to the Austin-American Statesman. The other patients include a 10-year-old girl in serious condition, another 10-year-old girl in good condition, and a 9-year-old girl also in good condition.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott identified the shooter as Salvador Ramos, who was shot and killed at the scene.
McConaughey, who regularly attends church, stressed that mass shootings are an "epidemic we can control.”
He said that regardless of one's political affiliation, "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," he said.
McConaughey ended his post with a note to those grieving the horrific shooting.
"To those who dropped their loved ones off to school not knowing that today was goodbye, no words can comprehend or heal your loss, but if prayers can provide comfort, we will keep them coming," he wrote.
Uvalde’s massacre is the deadliest school shooting since Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut in 2012.
Jeannie Ortega Law is a reporter for The Christian Post. Reach her at: email@example.com She's also the author of the book, What Is Happening to Me? How to Defeat Your Unseen Enemy Follow her on Twitter: @jlawcp Facebook: JeannieOMusic