Lonnie Chavis (who plays pre-teen Randall on This Is Us) just penned an open letter about his personal experience with racism and, well, damn.
The 12-year-old actor showed his support for the Black Lives Matter movement by writing a candid personal essay about the challenges he’s faced. In the full letter, which was exclusively published by People magazine, Chavis recalled several examples of being racially profiled as a young Black actor in Hollywood. (Warning: It’s not for the fainthearted.)
“Being a young Black boy in Hollywood made it even more fearful,” he wrote. “I can recall the time when I realized there are not a lot of people that look like me on these Hollywood sets and asked my mom where all the Black people were. I also remember being invited to events but then being treated very poorly by security or entrance checkers, like I wasn’t supposed to be there, until I had a publicist to announce me.”
Chavis revealed that he’s often mistaken for other young Black actors, like Miles Brown (Jack) from Black-ish and Caleb McLaughlin (Lucas) from Stranger Things. “I think of going to Hollywood events with other actors and actresses where I was constantly asked if I’m the boy from Black-ish or the boy from Stranger Things,” he added. “I guess we all look alike since we are all Black. Can you imagine being confused for any other Black kid just because you all share the same profession? I can.”