UVALDE, Texas — Matthew McConaughey is not "alright" with current policies in place that he says prevent "responsible gun ownership."
Two weeks after the deadly Uvalde school shooting, McConaughey, 52, wrote a letter that was published in the Austin American-Statesmen where he urged Americans to understand the difference between "gun control" and "gun responsibility" in hopes there'll be bipartisan support for the latter.
"The first (control) is a mandate that can infringe on our right; the second (responsibility) is a duty that will preserve it," he wrote. "There is no constitutional barrier to gun responsibility."
McConaughey is an Uvalde native, as well as someone known to be pro gun and pro Second Amendment, even after the tragedy at Robb Elementary where a lone gunman shot and killed 21 people -- 19 children and two adults -- on May 24.
"Keeping firearms out of the hands of dangerous people is not only the responsible thing to do, it is also the best way to protect the Second Amendment. We can do both."
In his letter, McConaughey mentions how mental health care, school safety, over-sensationalized media coverage and "the decaying state of American values" need to be addressed to help prevent mass shootings, but they require time, he said.
"We don't have the luxury of time," he wrote. "We need to focus on corrections and countermeasures that can also and immediately reduce gun violence tragedies that have become too common in our country."
His solution: Restore responsible gun ownership.
How to 'restore responsible gun ownership'
In his letter, McConaughey made a few proposals on how to "restore responsible gun ownership," including background checks -- something 88% of Americans, including many Texans, are in support of, he said.
Citing the deadly 2015 Charleston church shooting where a white supremacist shot and killed nine Black churchgoers, McConaughey said the shooter was able to get a gun without completing a background check; something that should've never happened, according to former FBI Director James Comey.
"The system failed," McConaughey wrote. "Gun control activists call this a loophole. I call it incompetence."
McConaughey also believes the legal age to purchase an assault rifle should be 21 years old, unless you are in the military.
"I'm not talking about 12-guage shotguns or lever-action hunting rifles," he wrote. "I'm talking about the weapon of choice for mass murderers, AR-15 rifles."
Referring to the shooting in his hometown, McConaughey said the Robb Elementary shooter bought two semi-auto rifles after his 18th birthday just days before the shooting.
"He obeyed the law," he stressed. "Had the law been different, perhaps I wouldn't be writing this."
McConaughey also suggested making "red flag" laws the law of the land, which would allow individuals and law enforcement to file a petition to prevent someone from buying a gun if they believe they'll be a threat to themselves or others. He explained 19 states and Washington D.C. already have these measures in place.
RELATED: What are red flag gun laws?
Lastly, McConaughey thinks there needs to be a waiting period before someone can buy an assault rifle; something studies have shown reduced homicides by 17%.
"Individuals often purchase weapons in a fit of rage, harming themselves or others," he wrote. "[A waiting period] is an acceptable sacrifice for responsible gun owners when it can prevent a mass shooting crime of passion or suicide."
Even with these proposals of change, McConaughey said he understands they won't solve all problems, but hopes they can help stop "some" of the tragedies like Uvalde without hindering Americans' right to bear arms.
"This is not a choice between guns or no guns. It’s the responsible choice. It’s the reasonable choice. It’s a quintessentially American choice: Where I have the right to be me, you have the freedom to be you and we have the responsibility to be US," he said. "To find common ground on this issue, both sides are going to have to answer the call and reach for the higher ground of our collective responsibility."