George Takei is hoping his current stint on "Celebrity Apprentice" will help him achieve an even loftier goal: to convince Donald Trump to support same-sex marriage.
The 74-year-old "Star Trek" actor told the New York Daily News that he and the billionaire mogul (and occasional U.S. presidential candidate) have a lunch date tentatively scheduled for April, at which point they will discuss the hot-button political issue. "Next time I'm in New York, Mr. Trump, I might take you to Jean Georges for lunch, and maybe we can discuss marriage equality,” Takei proposed during an “Apprentice” conference call with reporters this week, according to the Daily News.
Trump's response: "You would be the perfect guy to teach me. You have a deal."
Takei, who wed longtime partner Brad Altman in 2008, also took to Twitter to confirm the date:
Interestingly, the actor -- who appeared this weekend in the star-studded Los Angeles reading of Dustin Lance Black's play "8," about California's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage -- seemed confident the discussion would go smoothly. "I’m looking forward to the lunch," he said. "I really was serious. I think Mr. Trump is a decent, fair-minded guy, and I think we can have a very good discussion." He went on to note: "I want to listen to his views and respond specifically to his concerns. The sense I get in my bones is that he’s a decent, sophisticated guy. I’m sure he knows many people who are gay or lesbian."
Whether or not Takei will be able to persuade Trump, a Republican who has long been opposed to same-sex marriage, remains to be seen. Last year, the 56-year-old entrepreneur compared the legalization of marriage equality to his reluctance to use a new kind of putter during golf, according to The New York Times. "A lot of people -- I don’t want this to sound trivial -- but a lot of people are switching to these really long putters, very unattractive. It's weird. You see these great players with these really long putters, because they can’t sink three-footers anymore...I have so many fabulous friends who happen to be gay, but I am a traditionalist."