George Takei may be best known for his intergalactic travels in the original Star Trek series, but the actor is devastated over what’s been happening at the border between the Untied States and Mexico.


President Donald Trump infamously authorized officials at the border to separate families, cruelly leaving children in detention centers without their parents or guardians. Takei is likening the Trump administration’s act to the containment of Japanese Americans in 1941 following the attack on Pearl Harbor, something Takei lived through as a five-year-old child. Notably, Laura Bush had previously drawn the same parallel.

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However, Takei adds that in one fundamental aspect, Trump’s treatment of Mexican families is worse that what Takei endured: he and the other children forced into the Japanese-American internment camps were not separated from their parents. In an op-ed piece for Foreign Policy, Takei explains that his parents were essential in protecting him during that period from the harsh truths of their situation, writing, “At least during the internment, my parents were able to place themselves between the horror of what we were facing and my own childish understanding of our circumstances.”


Takei said he’s unable to fathom how he would have reacted if he had been taken from his parents, adding, “I cannot for a moment imagine what my childhood would have been like had I been thrown into a camp without my parents. That this is happening today fills me with both rage and grief: rage toward a failed political leadership who appear to have lost even their most basic humanity, and a profound grief for the families affected.”

Takei closes his piece by explaining how, as a survivor of an internment camp, he’s made it his mission to prevent them from ever occurring on United States soil again. He notes how the “internment happened because of fear and hatred, but also because of a failure of political leadership.”


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