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George Takei is taking a firm stand against the recent comments by a Donald Trump surrogate that the treatment of Japanese-Americans during WWII serves as “precedent” for a national Muslim registry now.
Takei called the remarks “dangerous” and warned against history repeating itself.
“The Japanese-American internment was an egregious violation of our national values and principles, a terrible event for which Congress apologized in 1988,” he said. “To invoke that dark chapter as a precedent for any action against any minorities today is a morally bankrupt and dangerous step, completely out-of-bounds with contemporary notions of civil and human rights.”
Trump surrogate Carl Higbie has come under fire this week for saying that a proposed national registry of Muslims holds “constitutional muster,” using Japanese internment camps as an example. “We’ve done it with Iran back awhile ago. We did it during World War II with the Japanese,” he said.
“The president needs to protect America first,” he continued, “and if that means having people that are not protected under our Constitution have some sort of registry so we can understand — until we can identify the true threat and where it’s coming from, I support it.”
In response to Higbie’s remarks, Takei said “it is more important than ever that the story of the internment be told and heard. We must remain vigilant and mindful of our past mistakes, so that history does not repeat itself. Trump’s rhetoric and plans to profile Muslims indicate that he has not learned the folly of the internment, nor the forces of fear and prejudice that propelled it.”
Takei took the opportunity to invite elected officials across the country to a film screening of Broadway’s Allegiance, which addresses Takei’s experiences with internment camps in the U.S. after Pearl Harbor. The musical is being screened by Fathom Events in over 600 cinemas on Dec. 13.
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