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Tuesday, December 8, 2015

GEORGE TAKEI SAID IT WELL.... AMERICANS

I am (finally!) getting through George Takei's autobiography, "To The Stars", and on page 187 was something that I HAD to write about.

[Full disclosure: Some of you have prolly noticed that I have read MANY books from the cast of Star Trek. I thoroughly enjoyed the stories of DeForest Kelley, Nichelle Nichols, James Doohan, William Shatner (sorry Bill, for the equal billing hahaaha).... yes, I've read ALL of them.... BEFORE I picked up this one.] Yet, as I progress in this man's life, it builds like a great movie. Some of this is my fault as I hated the section on how our country treated it's own citizens during a time of war. It's embarrassing to have a history of abuse that we have here in the United States, but with this pain can come a strength... if we can overcome it.

For those of you who don't know George, (no, we are NOT on a first-name basis... YET!) he is a most interesting young man. To those of us who are admitted Trekkers, he is Hikaru Sulu from San Francisco, helmsman on the USS Enterprise. Some people may only know him as the outspoken and interesting man on social media who has a never-ending smile, a clever opinion, and  husband since 2008.

Either way, once you get past the obvious stardom, you find a man whose journey in this lifetime has been amazing. From his childhood of good memories and hard-working parents, to the choice of a non-traditional career, to page 187 (I stopped right there to write THIS!), you get the impression of a man who has made
the most of his opportunities and appreciates the gift he has. We could all be so lucky.

So what's the big deal about page 187 that prompted my listless self to sit here and get wordy?Let me use George's own words, as he discussed his participation in the musical "Fly Blackbird!" and the influence it had on his views of being American....

"Over it's run, "Fly Blackbird!" affected an enormous number of people. One of them was me. I gained friends and insights that led to a deeper understanding of this ever-changing, ever-developing new breed of humans called Americans. As a people, we may have  varied histories tracing back to the Mayflower or the slave ships, to split-rail corrals or to barbed wire
fences. But, whatever our histories, however tortured and adversarial they may have been, our destinies are bound inextricably together. We have a common future. Our challenge lies, not in carrying the weight of our pasts like anchors, but in working in concert to build that common tomorrow."

One of the things that I realized a long time ago was, no matter how compassionate a person can be, you NEVER have the perspective of someone else. Be it a person from a different culture, a different neighborhood, or a different race, no one TRULY knows the pain and suffering of a person going through the abuse. Many of us say we don't see color but that would be lying. We SEE it and react accordingly. We despise the language used by some to describe our brothers and sisters from a race NOT Caucasian. We are sickened by the treatment of human beings by those who have the power and desire to beat down their own people. We are especially saddened that, with the power of the internet, we see MORE mistreatment around the world than we can imagine. George is right. We DO have a common future. Will it be as FAMILY or as strangers?

Thank you George, for the hard work at entertaining us, for speaking out on issues that need revealed, and for just being a great human being.... you make us ALL proud.

Now excuse me as I get back to the story.....


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