Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Video: George Takei Relates His Family's Humiliating Internment Camp Experience

Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

Actor George Takei's testimony urging repeal of Supervisors' WWII support for Japanese internment from Mark Ridley-Thomas on Vimeo.

It took 40 years, but this week the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to rescind a 1942 order that supported the internment of Japanese Americans. The resolution urged Franklin D. Roosevelt to proceed with internment, saying it was difficult "if not impossible to distinguish between loyal and disloyal Japanese aliens."

The vote provided an opportunity for actor and activist George Takei to testify about his family's own humiliating experience being shuttled first to live in a horse stall at the Santa Anita Racetrack and later to an internment camp in Arkansas. He recalled reciting the pledge of allegiance while being imprisoned: "I could see the barbed wire and the sentry tower from my school house window as I recited ‘with liberty and justice for all.'"

Support for LAist comes from

150,000 Japanese Americans were held in camps until January 1945—many of them who were removed from their homes on the West Coast.

A Trip to Manzanar: One of California's Japanese Internment Camps