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George Takei on marriage equality: We are family

Former Star Trek star George Takei publicly disclosed that he was gay in 2005.
George Takei on The Last Word.
George Takei on The Last Word.

Former Star Trek star George Takei publicly disclosed that he was gay in 2005. He married his longtime partner Brad Altman in California three years later, after a 21-year courtship. The Buddhist priest who presided over the ceremony pronounced them “spouses for life.”

If you’re a frequent Last Word viewer, you already know that the actor, activist and Facebook superstar visited the show last week to talk with Lawrence about his recent blog, “Tax Me, Please,” where he asked Congress to raise taxes on the top 2% in order to avoid the looming fiscal cliff. But after the show ended that night, Takei agreed to stick around to discuss more of his thoughts in a web exclusive on marriage equality.

The core value of marriage is two people who love each other and are committed to each other. It isn’t necessarily defined by gender… You want security for your spouse, whatever may happen, and our laws do not provide that… This kind of legalistic barrier that we insist on putting up is, to me, unfathomable. In the case of [Asians like me] being incarcerated during the Second World War, we looked different—visually 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 a family the same legal protections and rights that they enjoy… It’s irrational.

Takei’s “Very Last Word” segment will air during Tuesday’s program.