And as Trump’s administration is beginning to take form — and already cracking down on Muslim registration — George Takei is urging our nation’s next leaders not to make the same mistakes of the past.
In a Washington Post essay published Friday, the Star Trek alum recounted his harrowing experience of being forced into a Japanese-American internment camp at just 5 years old.
The 79-year-old is worried a similar measure could be enforced for Muslim-Americans based on the rhetoric he’s heard from the President-elect and his surrogates. He wrote:
“The stigmatization, separation and labeling of our fellow humans based on race or religion has never led to a more secure world. But it has too often led to one where the most vulnerable pay the highest price.”
Takei voiced concern over the “dangerous talk” he’s heard by “those who have the ear of some at the highest levels of government” — like prominent Trump supporter Carl Higbie, who made some alarming remarks about immigration reform in a recent interview.
In an interview with Megyn Kelly on Wednesday, the co-chair of Great American PAC addressed the possibility of Trump’s administration reinstating a national registry for immigrants where terrorist groups were active, saying the infamous Japanese-American internment camps set a precedent for such a measure.
While Higbie didn’t say he intended to put anyone in camps, Takei feels the “true human tragedy” hundreds of thousands of people went through is being ignored. He continued:
“The internment was a dark chapter of American history, in which 120,000 people, including me and my family, lost our homes, our livelihoods, and our freedoms because we happened to look like the people who bombed Pearl Harbor. Higbie speaks of the internment in the abstract, as a ├óΓé¼╦£precedent’ or a policy, ignoring the true human tragedy that occurred.”
The social media maven painted a gruesome picture of life at the internment camp, remembering how he and his family were forced out of their home at gunpoint and forced to live in a “single smelly stall” inside a horse stable before being shipped off by train to the swamps of Arkansas.
Now, Takei is concerned to hear that the President-elect has declined to fully denounce America’s decision to force families like his into the twisted camps — which doesn’t bode well for the Muslim-Americans in Trump’s crosshairs.
“Let us all be clear: ├óΓé¼╦£National security’ must never again be permitted to justify wholesale denial of constitutional rights and protections. If it is freedom and our way of life that we fight for, our first obligation is to ensure that our own government adheres to those principles. Without that, we are no better than our enemies.”
We couldn’t agree more with the actor and hope this awful Muslim registry never comes to fruition.
[Image via Christoph Hardt/Future Image/TNYF/WENN.]