HomeBad Ass AsiansCBS: @GeorgeTakei Revisits the Concentration Camp that Defines Him

CBS: @GeorgeTakei Revisits the Concentration Camp that Defines Him


George Takei as Sulu on Star TrekStar Trek will celebrate its Golden Anniversary in just three more years.

But the journey for George Takei, who as Sulu was at the helm of the Starship Enterprise, didn’t begin in the galaxy.  It began in a dusty incarceration camp in Rohwer, ARK.

It was his experience there that he says defines his values today.

He was just five-years old when a guard came to his home to take the family away to the camp.

“My mother was the last to come out. And she had tears rolling down her cheeks. It was the memory that I can never erase — to see your mother crying — as we were being ordered out of our home,” he told CBS.

His family spent eight months at Rohwer before being moved to a maximum security camp at Tule Lake.

The racism continued even after the war ended.

“I started school in Los Angeles,” he said. “And the teacher continually called me ‘the little Jap boy,’ which stung. It hurt.”

But it was another teacher who befriended Takei and gave him the part in a Thanksgiving play.

Takei loved it and ended up studying acting at UCLA, picked up a bunch of bit parts before landing the role of Sulu in Star Trek.

“It broke the stereotypes. I mean, I was a regular, visible, talking, walking, fencing presence!”

Despite his celebrity status, Takei stayed in the closet and didn’t come out until 2005 when the California Marriage Equality bill was vetoed.

“And I thought, you know, my career might be over,” Takei said. “But quite the reverse of that happened.”

You can find out what’s next on Takei’s journey on CBS.




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