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S.I. Hayakawa
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    (July 18, 1906-February 27, 1992)
    Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Birth name was Samuel Ichiye Hayakawa
    English professor/Linguist/Politician
    Wrote 'Language in Thought and Action' (1939) and 'Symbol, Status and Personality' (1963)
    President of San Francisco State College (1968-73)
    Served one term as a Senator from California (1977-83)
    He originally planned to run for the Senate as a Democrat in 1970, then ran as a Republican six years later.
    While campaigning, he said the US should keep control of the Panama Canal, quipping 'After all, we stole it fair and square.'
    However, he helped win Senate approval of the Torrijos-Carter Treaty that transferred control of the Canal to Panama (1978).
    He criticized demands that Japanese American citizens interned during World War II be paid reparations, claiming their detention was 'perhaps the best thing that could have happened.'
    He was nicknamed 'Sleeping Sam' after being repeatedly spotted dozing during Senate debates.
    He became a hero to conservatives when he confronted a group of student protestors and, unable to be heard over a blaring sound truck, jumped on top of the truck and pulled the wires from the loud speakers (December 2, 1968).
    He was refreshingly blunt as a politician, such as responding to a question about a ballot initiative to legalize greyhound racing with, 'I can't think of anything that interests me less.'
    He said he never paid attention to polls, commenting 'I'm too old to worry about batting averages.'
    He may have been narcoleptic.
    He was a dedicated jazz fan and wrote liner notes for several albums.

Credit: C. Fishel

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