(Robert Viagas’s article appeared on Playbill.com, 11/18; via Pam Green.)

The movement among some political leaders to bar Syrian immigrants crossed over into Broadway territory Nov. 18 when the Mayor of Roanoke, VA, cited the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II–the subject of the musical Allegiance–as as an appropriate response and as justification for barring Syrian civil war refugees from his state. Allegiance star George Takei was quick to respond.

In calling for area governments and nongovernmental agencies to suspend help in relocating Syrian refugees to the area, Roanoke Mayor David A. Bowers was quoted by the Roanoke Times as saying, “I’m reminded that President Franklin D. Roosevelt felt compelled to sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor…and it appears that the threat of harm to America from ISIS now is just as real and serious as that from our enemies then.”


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