Over 150 students at Cal Poly Pomona wait in line Tuesday for George Takei event at the student center.
Over 150 students at Cal Poly Pomona wait in line Tuesday for George Takei event at the student center. (Thomas R. Cordova/Staff Photographer)

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Related story: George Takei, 'Star Trek's' Mr. Sulu, talks gay rights, a childhood spent in internment camps

Photo galleries: George Takei at Cal Poly Pomona | George Takei: Oh My


George Takei, 'Star Trek's' Mr. Sulu, talked about social justice in a digital world Tuesday at the Bronco Student Center at Cal Poly Pomona.

Takei took the stage after a standing ovation from the crowd of about 100 people and right away said, "Ohhh, my!"

Takei began his discussion with diversity equals strength and then talked about the Japanese American experience during World War II.

"We were told we would stay in a narrow horse stall," said Takei, of Japanese American internment at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia.

"What would be grotesquely abnormal in normal times became normal in the internment camp," Takei continued.

He spoke about his time in the internment camps at the age of 5. "It's remarkable how young children can be adaptable," Takei said of the poor living conditions at the park.

Our first home after internment camps was in a Skid Row hotel, he explained.

After the war, Takei said the hatred against Japanese-Americans was intense.

Takei also talked about other experiences while growing up. He said he remembers being 9 years old when friends were saying, "Monica is hot," and all he could think is, "Bobby is hot."

When Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed and stopped equality and advancement of gays in 2005, Takei said he was livid.

He explained that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people are part of family. Why do we want to put up barriers to our own kin?

He started using social media to tell get the word out to "sci-fi, nerds and geeks" about his musical "Allegiance," which will be opening in the fall on Broadway in New York.

Takei explained that we've made great progress in equality and diversity, but we still need to be optimistic and keep on pushing forward.

More details to come.


Reach Canan via email, call her at 909-987-6397 ext. 425, or find her on Twitter @ChinoValleyNow.