Matthew McConaughey's emotional speech on Uvalde shooting
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It was a poignant moment for Piers Morgan when he witnessed the speech at the White House about a young girl so badly disfigured by the gunman that she could only be identified by her distinctive Converse trainers. As Matthew McConaughey spoke of the aspirations the late nine-year-old had to one day be a marine biologist, Piers felt a lump forming in his throat, as the account reminded him of his own ten-year-old daughter.
The answer to all this misery, pain and torment cannot be to do nothing, America
Part of his horror stemmed from learning how badly damaged the bodies of the deceased were.
In his speech, Matthew had recalled meeting a cosmetologist who specialises in mortuary makeup, who’d told him that the restoration required to make the bodies of the shooting victims look “presentable” had been enormous.
“Why? Due to the exceptionally large exit wounds of an AR-15 rifle,” he shuddered.
“Most of the bodies so mutilated that only DNA tests or green Converse could identify them. Many children were left not only dead, but hollow.”
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As the shocking images invaded listeners’ minds, Matthew had gone on to discuss a girl who was identifiable after death by her distinctive lime green Converse trainers.
She’d drawn a tiny heart on one toe, making it immediately clear who she was despite the mangled appearance of her body.
“It was when he got to Maite [Rodriguez], and her sneakers, that I felt my eyes sting with tears,” Piers wrote in his column for the New York Post.
“[She] was annihilated so horrendously in her classroom that the distinctive sneakers were the only way anyone could identify her afterward.”
Piers continued sadly: “I have a 10-year-old daughter who wears sneakers and loves to draw.”
He described the scenes at the White House, during which Matthew had punched the lectern in fury while contemplating the injustice of the deaths, as “gut-wrenching”.
Matthew, who Piers personally interviewed around 18 months earlier, had been campaigning for better gun control laws.
The measures he now proposes include better background checks and red-flag laws for those seeking to purchase the weapons.
He also suggested raising the age limit for owning an AR-15 from 18 to 21.
Piers has held passionate views opposing the availability of guns in the USA in the past too.
On his former CNN show, Piers Morgan Live, he enraged one far-right radio host, Alex Jones, so much that he launched a petition asking for the broadcaster to be deported.
Over 100,000 American citizens signed in favour of him being removed from his show – and the country.
In dramatic scenes, the White House then released a statement reminding the public that “the Constitution enshrines the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press”.
Although Piers is now back home in the UK, he still cares passionately about gun law reform and he has posted again about the issue on Twitter today.
He discussed his column for the New York Post in view of almost eight million followers, describing “why @McConaughey‘s heartbreaking, passionate speech about the Uvalde school massacre was the most powerful & unifying rhetoric on guns I’ve ever heard.”
He added: “These #Uvalde hearings are heartbreaking, enraging, sickening & unbearable. The answer to all this misery, pain and torment cannot be to do nothing, America.”
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