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George Takei On America’s Anti-Asian History

They Called Us Enemy © George Takei
courtesy Top Shelf Productions.

With the enactment of President Franklin Roosevelt’s Executive Order 9066, roughly 120,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned by their own government during the Second World War. The actor and activist George Takei was one of them.

Fast forward some 80 years to the news this week of the tragic shooting of eight people in Georgia, six of whom were women of Asian descent. We’ll talk with George Takei about his experiences as a young boy in internment camps and about the enduring anti-Asian sentiment he has fought against throughout his adult life. As the character Sulu in the original Star Trek series, he was one of the first Asian Americans to have a starring role in a major network show, a position that has since given him a platform for talking publicly about our country’s history of racism. Takei is also the author of the graphic memoir They Called Us Enemy. [IndieBound| Amazon| Bookshop ]

You can watch George Takei’s TED Talk “Why I Love a Country That Once Betrayed Me” here.

George Takei will be in Utah at the Moab Music Festival on Sept. 4, 2021, where he will narrate a newly commissioned piece of music based on his graphic memoir They Called Us Enemy. Musican Kenji Bench composed the piece, and you can learn more about how you can attend its world premiere here.   

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.