Forget COVID-19, George Clooney thinks America’s greatest pandemic is racism, and the cure is to vote.
In response to nationwide protests sparked by the death of George Floyd while in custody of Minneapolis police, Clooney wrote an essay published by The Daily Beast on Monday.
"How many times have we seen people of color killed by police?" the 59-year-old actor wrote.
"Tamir Rice, Philando Castile, Laquan McDonald. There is little doubt that George Floyd was murdered. We watched as he took his last breath at the hands of four police officers. Now we see another defiant reaction to the systemic cruel treatment of a portion of our citizens like we saw in 1968, 1992, and 2014."
"We don't know when these protests will subside," he continued. "We hope and pray that no one else will be killed. But we also know that very little will change."
He wrote that the "anger and the frustration" evident in protests across the nation "is just a reminder of how little we've grown as a country from our original sin of slavery."
"The fact that we aren't actually buying and selling other human beings anymore is not a badge of honor," he wrote. "We need systemic change in our law enforcement and in our criminal justice system."
He explained that he feels our nation needs policymakers and politicians who "reflect basic fairness to all of their citizens equally."
"This is our pandemic. It infects all of us, and in 400 years we've yet to find a vaccine," he wrote. "And there is only one way in this country to bring lasting change: Vote."