BOOK REVIEW: The culture of Issei Buddhism

ISSEI BUDDHISM IN THE AMERICAS Edited By Duncan Ryuken Williams and Tomoe Moriya (Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 2010, 216 pp., $25, paperback) For academics and others interested in religious, Asian American, and/or Japanese American studies, editors Duncan Ryuken Williams and Tomoe Moriya have assembled a wide-ranging collection of articles on Buddhism in the […]

NPS awards $2.9 million in grants to preserve confinement sites

WASHINGTON — The National Park Service (NPS) has awarded 23 grants totaling $2.9 million to help preserve and interpret historic locations where Japanese Americans were detained during World War II. In the program’s second year, the Japanese American Confinement Sites Grants will help fund projects in a dozen states, including the restoration of a historic […]

ETCHED INTO HISTORY: Merced Assembly Center Memorial Unveiled

MERCED, Calif. — The city of Merced has never really been a destination point of any sort. Located off of Highway 99 in California’s Central Valley, it’s a gateway to one of California’s most popular destinations, Yosemite National Park. Last year, it was put on the map by one famous visitor, First Lady Michelle Obama, […]

My Life as a Crusader

I am Ruth Shigeko Ishizaki (formerly Hirose) and I was born and raised on our family’s 80 acres of orange groves in Richgrove, California in the southern San Joaquin Valley, northeast of Delano, at the base of the Sierra Mountains. Since our orange grove was east of the California Highway 99 dividing line, called the […]

San Leandro School to Be Named for Civil Rights Icon Fred Korematsu

SAN LEANDRO, Calif. — San Leandro High School’s new freshman campus will be named after the late Fred T. Korematsu — who challenged orders to go to a World War II American concentration camp — following a unanimous vote by the school board. “I hope my father’s story will be an inspiration to high school […]

UC Berkeley’s Honorary Degree Ceremony a Time to Reflect

For most of the approximately 400 students who participated in the University of California Berkeley’s Dec. 13 winter graduation ceremony, the day represented the beginning of an exciting future as college grads. However, for a select group, the day marked a bittersweet end to a painful chapter in their past. Forty-two of the approximately 500 […]

Honored: 67 Years Late, UCSF Awards Nikkei with Diplomas

On Dec. 4, Edith Oto received a degree from the School of Nursing at the University of California San Francisco. She also turned 90. The Napa native was one of the 68 former UCSF students who was granted an honorary degree almost 68 years after Executive Order 9066 derailed her education. Diplomas were handed out […]

Nisei Commencement Honors Our Parents and Grandparents, and UC

The following is an excerpt of Patrick Hayashi’s prepared remarks made Dec. 4 at the Nisei honorary degree ceremony at the Robertson Auditorium at the UC San Francisco Mission Bay campus: During our darkest days, UC stood by us. When others treated us harshly, you treated us with kindness. When others persecuted us, you protected […]

NISEI COLLEGE DIPLOMAS: Making Good on a 67-Year-Old Promise

The California Nisei College Diploma Project is sponsored by the California Civil Liberties Public Education Program in cooperation with Union Bank. Our job, our task, our responsibility is to assist colleges and universities in identifying their Nisei college diploma recipients, wherever they or their families may be. I would like to thank Assemblymember Warren Furutani […]

THE POWER OF WORDS REVISITED: ‘Concentration Camps’ and ‘Internment Camps’

Note: The following is the second part of a series on the terminology used to describe the incarceration of Nikkei during WWII. The first piece, which focused on two specific terms — “evacuation” and “relocation” — appeared in the Nichi Bei Times Weekly July 23-29, 2009 (www.nichibeitimes.com). Some people have told me the problem with […]

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