The Last Word | December 11, 2012
>>> star trek legend george takei made news when he wrote a blog post advocating higher taxes for higher income earners like himself. he and nick ramsey would talk about just that. after every show guests get a chance to talk about the things they didn't get to say on air for the very last word, which is then posted to the show's website. here is more of the last word exclusive interview. lawrence asked takei about being an activist for marriage equality and why exactly he met with donald trump .
>> so, george , how you doing convincie inine ining donald trump that he needs to pay higher taxes?
>> we didn't talk about that part of it.
>> you met with him this week?
>> i did. day before yesterday.
>> you did his show, celebrity apprentice .
>> that's right. and when we were promoting that, i said i would like to have lunch with you, and discuss your concern about marriage equality . and i expected him to demur. he said, you know something, george , i think i could learn something from you. and so he agreed to it. i was a little taken back, i must say. but we couldn't get our calendars to jibe. i was working on a tv series in pittsburgh. then i went from that to working on a musical called the legions in san diego , which broke all records there, and we're headed to broadway this fall.
>> what is that?
>> it's about japanese-americans.
>> i was just reading about it. they have a distinguished history of outstanding productions. we broke the box office dollars as well as attendance. it was a great success.
>> so you try to talk sense to donald trump . didn't you know going in there's no such thing as talking sense to donald trump ?
>> well, but he's a good businessman.
>> could you show him a businessman's reason why he for his business life should think the way you do?
>> well, there are going to be more marriages here. more celebration of marriages. people coming from other states like new jersey that doesn't have marriage equality coming to new york to celebrate and legalize their union. the core value of marriage is two people who love each other and who are committed to each other. it isn't necessarily defined by gender. opposite sex marriages often are horrific.
>> really? what are you talking about? what are you talking about?
>> let me show you a copy of the inquirer. people that get married in las vegas overnight and then are fighting and yelling and suing each other and they get divorced.
>> sometimes they don't remember they got married.
>> that's right. that is not a marriage. that's not what we should sanctify. what we're talking about is civil law . there's a distinction there. and those who love each other and want to protect each other, because one may be older than the spouse and you want security for your spouse for whatever may happen. and our laws do not provide that. we want security for when we should pass or when -- well i can give you an example. we had friends -- it's past tense now -- in washington, d.c. they've been together for over a decade. one partner went out of town on a business trip . came back, opened his apartment door. and his partner was on the floor, having passed out -- or died of a heart attack in his absence. the deceased partner's relative was a lawyer brother in boston for whom had been estranged. he came and took everything. the laws were against the one that -- they shared their lives and their fortune and yet he lost t all. so this grieving partner lost not only the love of his life, but everything that they had built together. there's that kind of injustice. and this barrier that we insist on, legalistic barrier that we insist on putting up is to me unfathomable. in the case of our being incourse rated in the second world war , we looked different. we were visibly identifiable. but in the case of homophobia, we are literally members of a family. we are sons and daughters of heterosexual parents. we are brothers and sisters . we are literally kin, blood kin, and yet we deny the lgbt member of the family the same legal protections and rights that they enjoy. it's irrational. you know 70% of young people under the age of 35 all support marriage equality .
>> the opposition is just aging out.
>> that's right. it's a matter of time.
>> you know, i've driven by northern california , one of the encampments up there. there's really nothing there you have to know on the map that this is where it was. no structures left.
>> they were all in the most decemb desolate place of the country.
>> yes, it's astonishing. i pull over and look at the identifier to tell you where it is. showed it to my daughter. it was so astonishing that that was so recent, so easy to do at the time, so hard to see what was wrong with it from the people outside those camps who put you there.
>> and it was totally irrational. because it was hawaii that was bombed. but if they had in turn -- the people of japanese-americans on hawaii in the hawaiian territory were not incarcerated. because they were about half the population and the economy would have collapsed. we who were on the west coast were thinly the spread out. we were primarily in the rural areas, farmers. some were acquiring land and becoming quite successful. and so it was hysteria and greed and lack of political leadership. interesting historical note. we had an attorney general in california who took the oath on the constitution of the united states , and he knew the constitution. yet when he sense d that the get rid of the japs movement was the most popular issue in california, he wanted to run for governor. he ran for governor on that get rid of the japs, and he won. later he was appointed to be the chief justice of the united states supreme court . his name is earl warren . and he never owned up to that checkered history of his.
>> it is amazing how quickly people sped away from it. my sense of it is -- i wasn't alive at the time. but my sense of it is that there was a realization that set in with higher speed than normal that, oh, we were grotesquely wrong, but we're not going to talk about it, say in the earl warren case. we're just going to go forward and leave this behind and try not to leave a trace of it, as there virtually isn't in terms of the structure or anything. george , i love having a cohost. i need you to come back. i need you back. this is so great.
>> joe is wonderful. you have a great show here. and i am an actor.
>> yes. thank you very, very much, george .
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