Japanese Americans gather in Texas to protest family detention at border

CRYSTAL CITY, Texas — More than 60 people from across the United States participated in a historical pilgrimage to Texas from March 29 to April 1 that included a memorial service at the former World War II Crystal City Department of Justice camp, a protest rally at the Dilley Detention Center, a meeting with Texas […]

President Obama needs to stop repeating FDR’s worst mistake and end family detention now

(Editor’s note: This blog was originally published on ACLU.org) The Obama administration has repeatedly characterized its newly constructed family detention camps as “an effective and humane” way to keep families together, and threatened in court filings that ending family detention would “require ICE to separate… children from their parents” by keeping the parents locked up […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Sen. Sanji Abe’s ‘tragic’ story, and the ‘hollow’ case for the wartime incarceration

This week’s chapter covers the tragic story of Sen. Sanji Abe as a way of understanding the plight of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i during World War II. People who study Executive Order 9066 and the Japanese American wartime concentration camp experience often present as contrast the treatment of Japanese Americans in the Territory of Hawai‘i. […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Deciphering the truth behind the JACL’s ‘800-pound gorilla’

This week’s column revisits a bit of “unknown history” and tries to determine whether it is true. Let me explain. On March 18, 2011, former Japanese American Citizens League Executive Director John Tateishi published a column in the Pacific Citizen. In this column, Tateishi recalled growing up critical of the JACL because of its policy […]

The importance of Japanese American baseball

Nikkei Baseball: Japanese American Players from Immigration and Internment to the Major Leagues By Samuel O. Regalado (Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 2013, 208 pp., $80, cloth, $25, paperback) From its roots in Meiji era Japan, history professor Samuel O. Regalado traces Nikkei baseball’s journey from Japan to Hawai‘i, and then to the Pacific […]

Does terminology matter?

In recent years, the Nikkei community has engaged in a renewed discussion to reject the euphemistic and false terms the government used to minimize the unjust and inhumane nature of the Japanese American incarceration. From 2009 through 2011, the Japanese American National Museum, the Manzanar Committee, the Tule Lake Committee and UCLA’s George and Sakaye […]

THE KAERU KID: Manzanar and more in Lone Pine

The annual pilgrimage to the Manzanar National Historic Site takes place during the last weekend of April. This coincides with the opening of trout season that so many Nikkei look forward to, and this year was predicted to be the best opening in years as far as the weather and the chance to catch a […]

Tule Lake, the consequences

Editor’s Note: On Aug. 2, the National Park Service (NPS) held a meeting at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo with community stakeholders about planning the Tule Lake Unit of World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument. Similar meetings were held in San Francisco, Sacramento and San Jose in Northern California. […]

President Obama hails Hirabayashi’s courage in defying wartime incarceration

WASHINGTON (Kyodo) — U.S. President Barack Obama on May 29 hailed the courage of Gordon Hirabayashi for defying the incarceration order for Japanese Americans during World War II as he posthumously awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the country’s highest civilian award. In a ceremony at the White House, Obama said that Hirabayashi, as […]

Stockton tolerance garden honors WWII-era educator

STOCKTON, Calif. — Bone-chilling morning breezes didn’t cool the warm feelings of some 125 supporters who gathered at a garden dedication at the San Joaquin Delta College on April 14 to honor late World War II-era educator Elizabeth Humbargar’s decades of service to the Japanese American community. The Stockton chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League […]