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'A Nation Engaged': America Ferrera




Actress America Ferrera speaks onstage at Women on the Run during Tina Brown's 7th Annual Women in the World Summit at David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center on April 8, 2016 in New York City.
Actress America Ferrera speaks onstage at Women on the Run during Tina Brown's 7th Annual Women in the World Summit at David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center on April 8, 2016 in New York City.
Jemal Countess/Getty Images

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KPCC and other NPR Member stations are participating in a national conversation called "A Nation Engaged." This week at The Frame, we're asking creators who work in arts and entertainment to weigh in on our nation's state of affairs. 

In our final installment of the series, we hear from TV actress, producer and activist America Ferrera. She began her acting career with the 2002 film, "Real Women Have Curves," and has since starred in the TV series "Ugly Betty" and more recently in NBC's workplace comedy, "Superstore."

Here are America Ferrera's responses for "A Nation Engaged":

What does it mean to be an American?

Being American means holding the American values of equality and liberty and justice for all in your heart and believing in those values and protecting those values regardless of whether you agree or disagree with another human being. Acknowledging their humanity, their equality and their right to justice is to me what it means to be American.

What could the next president do to advance your vision?

I think that the next President of the United States needs to acknowledge that there are barriers to achieving that equality and there are real legislative and physical and cultural obstacles to all of us enjoying that equality. So it's not just about us acknowledging them and saying, yes they exist — which is hard enough for us to do — but to acknowledge them and [ask] how we begin to remove the barriers so that equality goes from just being an idea and a concept to something that can be an experience for so many people that it isn't an experience for yet.

Series: A Nation Engaged

NPR and KPCC's coverage of critical issues facing the nation before November's presidential election. The stories seek to build a nationwide conversation around focusing on a specific question each time.

Read more in this series and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on Facebook.



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