Obama's green converse sneakers.

“Time for America to rebrand itself based on what we truly value…” – Matthew McConaughey

One of the most unique presentations from The White House press room happened yesterday when Uvalde, Texas native, actor Matthew McConaughey, took to the podium to discuss his week in his hometown, where he spent time with the families of those lost to the mass shooting. He was in Washington to meet with local political leaders.

McConaughey’s wife sat to the side of the room holding a pair of green high top sneakers used to identify a 10 year old girl killed in the shooting.

McConaughey said we are in a moment in time that could turn the country around. McConaughey’s mother taught kindergarten a few miles from Robb Elementary. He started his talk reviewing his own upbringing where early gun use was just part of growing up in this part of the United States. He talked about respect you were taught to have for guns.

A moderate on gun control, his talk identified other initiatives the country needs to focus on, as clearly mass shootings cannot be prevented by not addressing a handful of crisis issues.

His presentation, approximately 20 minutes, can be viewed, below:

The actor took no questions after his passionate speech, but did go on with Brett Baier on Fox News at 6pm. Part of that interview is below.

Some of the highlights:

The issues that present themselves go beyond gun control, but they do identify ways, he says, to protect the 2nd Amendment, and these steps:

  • the return of family values
  • the return of American values
  • more secure and safe schools
  • invest in mental health care
  • restraining sensationalized media coverage of similar incidents
  • responsible gun ownership (background checks, minimum age from 18 to 21 for AR-15 purchase, waiting periods, red flag laws and consequences for those who abuse them)

He stressed responsible gun owners are fed up with the 2nd Amendment being threatened by actions, and said the country needs to put aside its differences. Several times he said that in the country, “we agree more than we disagree” – and this should not be a partisan issue, as people in power have failed to act – can’t we rise above because now we have a life preservation need at hand.

His belief that we are not as divided as we are being told we are, followed his call to find great American leaders for our children to watch and learn from. “We can’t be leaders if we are only living for re-election.”

“Let’s give all of us reason to believe the American dream is not an illusion.”

We start by making the loss of these lives matter.

Nevaeh – Jacklyn – Makenna – Jose – Eliahna – Irma – Uziyah – Amerie – Xavier – Jayce – Tess – Maranda – Eva – Alithia – Annabell – Maite – Alexandria – Layla – Jailah – Eliahanna – Rojelio


McConaughey took no questions as he left the podium, but smartly went on conservative Fox network to talk with Bret Baier – part of that interview, here:

In Rhode Island…

In Rhode Island, there has been little talk about increasing mental health services in a strategic way. There has been almost no talk about American values or family values. There have been scattered conversation about creating safer and more secure schools – a report is due in two days about the safety and security status of every school in the state. The issue of SROs or police in schools is spotty. In New Jersey, school boards have voted to hire retired police for school patrols. Florida is calling for crisis intervention training, 80% of school staff will be trained in mental health awareness, and safety officers for charter schools.

Most of the discussion is focusing on a few pieces of legislation at the RI State House that are up for a vote in the House Thursday – and in the Senate on Friday. Expected bills on assault weapons bans and safe storage regulations have not surfaced, with some reports that the Speaker and Senate President have blocked those efforts, seen as critical to the 2nd Amendment and gun right’s groups. Many critics note that “criminals” do not follow laws, and if all we do is enact laws – some of which are badly written and have been found to be unconstitutional in other states – what have we really done?

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