Korematsu v. United States (1944) was one of the worst Supreme Court rulings in the history of America, an enormous suppression of civil liberties that is often overshadowed by World War II. This great time is often looked upon as a courageous fight for democracy and freedom. In reality we were completely contradicting ourselves by discriminating against Japanese Americans and relocating them to what were effectively concentration camps; this process was called Japanese internment.
Following the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, in February 1942, Franklin Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 allowing the US military to declare parts of the US, as military areas and thereby excluding specific groups of people from them. Presidential Executive Order 9066 and congressional statues gave the military authority to exclude citizens of Japanese ancestry from areas deemed critical to national defense and potentially vulnerable to turning on the US. The result was that the order authorized the US government to forcibly roundup 120,000 persons of Japanese ancestry into 10 internment camps. At this same time, the Canadian government interned 26,000 Japanese Canadians.
These Japanese Americans were forced to evacuate their homes and leave their jobs, and in some cases, family members were separated and put into different camps. President Roosevelt himself classified the 10 areas as
I am a Chinese American who was born in the United States but my parents are immigrants from China. While I am not Japanese, I empathize with them. However, unlike a lot of people, I feel the blame is to be put more on the American people than the government of the United States.
The United States government was irresponsible, illogical, and unethical in handling the situation, but at the time, they were under extreme pressure from WWII and the American people. If it were not for the hysteria and racism spread by the American people that dominated the west coast, I think the internment process would have been shorten.The American people spread untrue rumors about Japanese saboteurs and traitors, when FBI agents discovered nothing after 5 years of intel on Japanese Americans. Americans failed to believe and acknowledge that these Japanese people among them were not just Japanese, but American. We chose to alienate and discriminate them, then stripe them of their rights and dignity.
This event is long over and victims of the incident received $20,000 as an apology from the United States government. Not only is that not enough, because some people had to sell everything they had for dirt cheap, but because you can't put a price on the dignity that you striped them of. So while we can blame the U.S. government, I believe a lot of the blame goes towards Americans. And you would assume that Americans learn from history but that is not the case, as Muslims are now the ones facing the hate, but that's another story.
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Farewell to Manzanar - This is a book I had to read in Middle School but it's about this event and it's stuck with me for a while.
Also if you are interested in the whole Muslim thing, check this recent news event out: [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]