With Allegiance, George Takei brought greater attention to an ugly part of United States history that – though it impacted more than 120,000 people – generally remains in the shadows. The Broadway show, which starred the Star Trek actor and Lea Salonga, takes inspiration from Takei and his family’s time in a Japanese-American internment camp following Pearl Harbor. Now, as Donald Trump prepares to accept the Republican Party’s presidential nomination, Takei’s using his experiences as a way to mobilize the Latino community.
On Wednesday, the actor uploaded a video onto Facebook to explain why Latinos need to come out in record numbers to keep Trump from becoming the president of the United States. In slow but decent Spanish, Takei draws parallels between Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and the politicians who thought those of Japanese descent posed a threat to the security of the country. For four years, Takei and his family remained locked up in the country they called home.
“Back then, they simply said, ‘A Jap is a Jap,’ and we lost our homes and freedom, even though two thirds of us were U.S. citizens,” he said. “Today, Trump tell his supporters that a “Mexican is a Mexican.” … He is playing upon the same fears and ignorance that once led this country to intern my family. Latinos have the power to stop Trump, especially by voting in large numbers in ‘swing’ states like Nevada, Colorado, and New Mexico. Your numbers can even put states like Arizona and Texas in contention. Donald Trump is a dangerous man, but your votes can ensure he never comes to power, and history does not repeat.”
Check out Takei’s powerful video below, and don’t forget to register to vote: