The “Star Trek” actor revealed the real-world consequences of the former president’s inflammatory rhetoric.
“Immediately, it’s a chill that goes out into the community. Or worse, it’s a frigid cold that goes out,” the “Star Trek” star told MSNBC’s Katy Tur.
“I mean, I’m not likely to be targeted,” Takei acknowledged. “But we have grandparents, parents, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews, and we are concerned.”
“It’s a chill that goes out throughout the country,” he added.
Takei earlier in the interview, which centered on this week’s killing of six women of Asian descent at Atlanta-area massage parlors, explained why he believed the correct kind of leadership was critical to debunking harmful stereotypes about Asian Americans.
Biden’s condemnation of anti-Asian racism “is in dramatic contrast to the has-been, gone president who continued to play to the ignorant and the racists in America by continuing to refer to the coronavirus as the ‘China flu’ or ‘kung flu,’” said Takei.
“Some are led by the masses,” Takei added. “Others truly lead and educate and enlighten, and that’s what President Biden is doing.”
Trump’s incendiary rhetoric and use of racist epithets throughout the pandemic to distract from his administration’s mishandling of the crisis “likely perpetuated racist attitudes,” a study published in the American Journal of Public Health determined this week. The STOP AAPI HATE group last year said Trump was the top “superspreader” of anti-Asian racism.