Actor Matthew McConaughey Worries about the Future of Freedom of Speech

Matthew McConaughey, 51, appearing live on ITV show Good Morning Britain today on December 15, from his Texas home, the actor discussed related issues from fake news to freedom of speech.

McConaughey was accused of white privilege earlier before he criticised those in Hollywood outraged over President Trump challenging President elect Joe Biden’s election win.

He said on the show that ‘we need liberals, what I don’t think we need is the illiberals and what I don’t think that some liberals see is that they’re often being cannibalised by the illiberals. There are extremes on both sides that I think are unfair… the extreme left and extreme right completely illegitimize the other side. They exaggerate the other side’s stance into an irrational state that makes no sense. That’s not fair.’

When asked by Piers Morgan about his views on free speech, McConaughey said that ‘the extreme left and the extreme right completely illegitimise the other side, the liberal and the conservative side which we need in certain places.’

‘The two extremes illegitimise those two sides, or they exaggerate that side’s stance into an irrational state that makes no sense – and that’s not fair when either side does that,’ he said. 

‘Where the waterline’s going to land on this freedom of speech, and what we allow and what we don’t and where this cancel culture goes, where that waterline lands is a very interesting place that we’re engaged in right now as a society because we haven’t found the right spot.’

McConaughey, added: ‘You’ve got to have confrontation to have unity, I think we can all agree on that, and that’s when a democracy works really well.

McConaughey, currently promoting his new book Greenlights, spoke about how our society needs more legitimate confrontation and also for people to hear opposing opinions to allow our democracy to function.

In his comment regarding democracy he said ‘You’ve got to have confrontation to have unity. That’s when a democracy works really well’. ‘I would argue we don’t have true confrontation right now, confrontation that gives some validation and legitimizes the opposing point of view. We don’t give a legitimacy or validation to an opposing point of view, we make it persona non grata, and that’s unconstitutional.’

Going on about ‘fake news’, McConaughey said: ‘Who knows what the heck to believe? Who knows who to listen to? Where’s that consensus? What leaders do we trust? What media outlets do we trust?’ 

‘There’s so much distrust right now and when you start distrusting everyone else in the world… you start distrusting yourself. We know that leads to some really tough places’. 

‘The truth right now, facts, they’re actual, they’re quite radical right now.’