Japan attacked the United States Of America in 1941, it was an act of war that Americans took serious. The island of Honolulu was bombed in a viscous and earth shattering attack, more than 2,000 people were killed and over 1,000 left wounded. This unforgivable event instilled fear and hatred into the hearts of every American. In an almost immediate reaction, President Roosevelt signed the Executive Order 9066 which detailed the removal of all persons of Japanese descent. Thus the beginning of the Japanese American internment.
The evacuation order set into place a sequence of events that were both unjust and horrific. Any person of Japanese decent was removed from the newly formed military zones, two thirds of which were United States citizens. Yes, American citizens were removed from their homes, assets frozen, and forced into relocation camps. The environment at these camps were less than adequate, they were overcrowded with very poor living conditions . There was a lack of plumbing and ability to cook, coal was hard to come by with only a limited amount of blankets, and food rations were scarce. Medical treatment was next to non-existent, which explains why almost 2,000 people died in these camps.
The incarceration of American citizens is an unconstitutional act, the way they were treated is one of the most appalling in history, comparable to the holocaust. As an American i am ashamed that our government was so narrow minded. To read the history of this event and stumble across statements that detail the concern for their safety…….Americans ready for justice, so we keep them safe……… in piss-poor conditions? I don’t think we had their best intentions in mind at all. How is it that the government can treat the people of this country this way and get away with it? Oh wait! could it be because we as a nation are just as narrow minded as the people who run this country?
If the French decedents were targeted the way the Jewish and Japanese heritages have been targeted in the past I could potentially end up in one of these evacuation situations. I would be considered a French American because of the way my family tree is laid out. It would not be fair to me as a upstanding American citizen to be targeted just because of my ancestors homeland. i would not stand to tolerate that type of abuse in this day of age.
Keene, Jennifer D., Visions of America: A History of the United States, Vol 2, 3e, Pearson, 2017.
“Japanese American Internment Notes.”