What is the most effective way for the average American to make a difference in Darfur? Baylor Bennett, BOSTON
When I am asked that question, I like to ask, In what area of your life do you wield influence? Are you a member of a church group? A book club? There are many ways, and none of them can be overlooked when you are talking about trying to create a collective awareness. You never know where water is going to find its level and finally reach someone.
Should the U.S. be a watchdog of the world when we have our own problems? Julie Augustin, BROOKLYN, N.Y.
I don't believe that the U.S. needs to take a police role. I think it needs to support African nations that have said they want to become a part of the solution. But they need financial support. They need technological support. They need lift. And in that way the U.S. could be very instrumental.
What is the greatest need of the African people? Randy Robison, FORT WORTH, TEXAS
One thing they need is better p.r. The news loves to talk about all the terrible situations, but it is very resistant to talk about the success. Liberia has a female President. That is huge, isn't it? Cameroon has turned itself around. If people in this country think of Africa as a place with kids and flies swarming around their heads, then they won't understand that these people are you and you are them.
Does the current relationship between China and Sudan hamper the U.N. from taking greater action in Darfur? Steve Louis-Charles, MIAMI
The U.N. sort of works at a pace that is not conducive to things that need rapid results. It has to consider all its member nations, and it has to go through a bureaucratic process. China is definitely impacting what is happening in Sudan given its relationship vis-à-vis the oil. But I believe the U.N. is trying to make moves.
Beyond the obvious widespread violence and conflicts, what parallels do you see between Darfur and Iraq? Derek Fricke, WASHINGTON
They are very different scenarios. [Omar] al-Bashir could be compared to Saddam Hussein as far as the treatment of his own people. But I think that is where a lot of the similarities stop.
I am only 11 years old and want to help. What can I do? Drew Howell, RICHMOND, VA.
That is a tough one. I don't want to tell an 11-year-old to scour the Internet for all the horrible stories. But I think this child's desire to help is very heartening. Keep asking that question, and a lot of answers will come to you.
Will this country ever be able to bring racism to a close? Renee Macaden, YONKERS, N.Y.
That's a wait and see. There is a collective mixture of guilt, shame, anger and resentment given our past with slavery that makes it difficult for us to have an honest discussion. I don't believe we will see the end of it in my lifetime. It is still very raw. Ask Don Imus.
How did you feel reliving what must have been a horrible experience by playing the role of Rusesabagina in Hotel Rwanda?
Kurt Delano Stout, KINGSTON, JAMAICA
Whatever my emotions were, they were only an infinitesimal fraction of what the people who lived through it felt. I had the luxury of the set to keep reminding me it was make-believe.
On Picket Fences you played a prosecutor who had to pick sides on controversial issues. Is it difficult to play a character whose stance conflicts with your personal point of view?
Richard Voza, MICKLETON, N.J.
I was in conflict with what my character wanted all the time. I would much rather be a defense attorney than a prosecutor. But that doesn't have anything to do with playing it.
What was it like beating poker champ Phil Ivey in a heads-up Texas Hold 'Em game?
Don Hill, MESA, ARIZ.
I don't know if I beat him so much as he lost. [Laughs.] But it was a nice little feather in the cap.
To read more from Don Cheadle and to submit questions for upcoming interview subjects, go to time.com/10questions