Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said Wednesday that he supports "tight" background checks on people purchasing guns in the aftermath of a deadly school shooting at an elementary school in South Texas.
Musk, who is in the middle of purchasing Twitter, further said he approves of such ideas as limiting the sale of weapons to specific people, such as those who own gun ranges or those in “high-risk locations, like gang warfare," but also voiced support for Second Amendment rights.
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“I strongly believe that the right to bear arms is an important safeguard against potential tyranny of government. Historically, maintaining their power over the people is why those in power did not allow public ownership of guns,” Musk told CNBC in an email exchange.
On Tuesday, a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, near the U.S.-Mexico border, led to the deaths of 21 people, including 19 children and two teachers. The suspected gunman, identified as an 18-year-old student at a nearby high school, was killed by law enforcement. Authorities said the shooter bought two rifles legally.
The school tragedy is just the latest in a string of mass shootings across the country, including in Buffalo, New York, earlier this month. Musk offered an observation about the media coverage.
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“Regarding recent events, the shooters are obviously doing this to generate the most amount of attention possible. Why is the media doing exactly what the mass-murderers want?” Musk said.
Musk has become increasingly attached to Texas after Tesla moved its headquarters to Austin from California late last year. SpaceX also has facilities in Texas. The billionaire tech mogul has made headlines in recent weeks as he navigates a deal to buy Twitter. He has also commented on political issues, including last week when Musk vowed to vote for Republican candidates in the midterm elections, a break from his record of "overwhelmingly" supporting Democratic candidates in the past.