George Clooney wants to see real, structural change.

In a new essay for The Daily Beast, the actor and activist responds to the killing of George Floyd at the hands of police, and the wave of protests that have emerged in its wake.

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“The anger and the frustration we see playing out once again in our streets is just a reminder of how little we’ve grown as a country from our original sin of slavery,” he wrote. “The fact that we aren’t actually buying and selling other human beings anymore is not a badge of honour.”

Clooney added, “We need systemic change in our law enforcement and in our criminal justice system. We need policymakers and politicians that reflect basic fairness to all of their citizens equally. Not leaders that stoke hatred and violence as if the idea of shooting looters could ever be anything less than a racial dog whistle.”

Referring to anti-black racism in America as “our pandemic,” Clooney wrote, “It infects all of us, and in 400 years we’ve yet to find a vaccine. It seems we’ve stopped even looking for one and we just try to treat the wound on an individual basis. And we sure haven’t done a very good job of that.”

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He ended with a call to engage with the political system to make that meaningful change happen.

“So this week, as we’re wondering what it’s going to take to fix these seemingly insurmountable problems, just remember we created these issues so we can fix them. And there is only one way in this country to bring lasting change: Vote,” Clooney said.