“Prior to the Second World War, the Asians were depicted as inscrutable, vicious, cunning, and every minority group has been characterized by stereotypes and that’s been perpetuated by the media, whether it be television, movies, radio, comic books, all these various forms have strengthened those stereotypes.”
George Takei knows what it’s like to see his demographic dragged through the mud by the media. He sees the same sort of thing playing out today when loudmouths like Donald Trump characterize undocumented Mexican immigrants as criminals and rapists. That Trump’s message has been gaining traction says a lot about the power of stereotypes to keep minority groups down.
Of course, this isn’t the first time Mr. Trump relied too heavily on stereotypes and misinformation to keep people of color down… and it’s not likely to be the last.
George Takei: Donald Trump, 14th candidate for the Republican nomination for president, made the statement that we have a porous border and that rapists and criminals are coming right through the border and that's why we've got to build a fence paid for by Mexico. And he's what, number one in the polls now? Isn't that interesting? That extreme position, at least with the Republicans, is getting all that support that puts him in the number one position. The fact is the legal emigration rate has gone down by practically a half since 2009. Illegal immigrants are going back to Mexico. We hear the term "Ferguson," which represents what's been happening all over the United States and various different cities, Baltimore, Wisconsin, Staten Island where young, male African-Americans unarmed are shot down and killed by law enforcement officers. So there's another example. The racial profiling of Arab-Americans in this country because they look like terrorists. That's precisely what happened to Japanese-Americans during the Second World War. We happen to look like the people that bombed Pearl Harbor. We Japanese-Americans are very, very mindful of the power of the media. Right prior to the Second World War, the Asians were depicted as inscrutable, vicious, cunning, and every minority group has been characterized by stereotypes and that's been perpetuated by the media, whether it be television, movies, radio, comic books, all these various forms have strengthened those stereotypes. And when it's inflamed by an individual or a current event, then the country is swept up by that hysteria.