The rest of the world has reacted to Ahmed Mohamed, the ninth-grade student and unfortunate victim of racism who brought a clock to school, but was arrested because authorities believed it was a bomb — why not George Takei? The Star Trek actor and Taylor Swift shade-thrower wasn’t able to reach out to Ahmed directly, so “I thought I’d post a letter to him” on Facebook.
Takei acknowledges that although they’ve never met, his story resonated with him. “You see, when I was a bit younger than you,” he writes, “I was also viewed by others as ‘the enemy’ and treated as such, simply because I happened to look like the people who had attacked America.”
Takei was born in Los Angeles, but during World War II, he and his family were forced to live in “relocation centers,” a fancy term for Japanese-American concentration camps. If anyone should hate America, it would be him. But Takei wants Ahmed to know that while the United States “may have done a terrible thing to me and my family, and to 120,000 other Japanese Americans,” he has great hope for his home country, “and I believe we do learn.”
There was a Japanese word we often said in the camps: Gaman. It means to keep on keeping on, with dignity and fortitude. I think you understand this word already. While certain school officials and police officers may have shown you the worst side of our nation, I understand many others have since shown you the best side. I was touched to hear you say that we all have to be true to ourselves.
Ahmed, you are now part of the story of America, and many will learn from your fine example. I see great things ahead for you. (Via)
Okay, but where’s his invitation to the USS Enterprise?