Friday, January 03, 2020

Reader's Diary #2119- George Takei, Justin Eisinger, Steven Scott (writers), Harmony Becker (art): They Called Us Enemy

While Justin Eisinger and Steven Scott assisted with the writing, the graphic novel They Called Us Enemy is George Takei's memoir detailing his time spent as a child in American concentration camps; a result of racism and wartime fear.

While definitely not a "both sides" sort of book, it's quite notable for the balance. Presenting himself as an optimistic sort of kid who could find positives anywhere, even as far as fond memories inside the camps, he (with subtle but strong emotions depicted in facial expressions by Harmony Becker) manages to show the stress and hurt of his parents as they coped during such traumatic times. Of course, as he grew older and talked more openly with his parents, Takei quickly understood the injustice of it all.

Likewise, he's takes a nuanced and balanced approach in his reflectionson those interred Japanese-Americans who signed loyalty oaths to to the US versus those who chose not to.

While he doesn't belabor the point, Takei acknowledges that this important piece of history is just as relevant now as it ever was, perhaps even more so under Trump's crazy, fascist, and racist rule.

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