Seventy-Five Years Ago Today; A Day That Also Should Live in Infamy

From Sol's Civic Minute:
Today is the 75th anniversary of the executive order that President Franklin Roosevelt signed three months after Pearl Harbor creating a system of internment camps to which Japanese Americans were sent.
Seattle writer Mayumi Tsutakawa wrote a piece for the International Examiner looking back at the internment and using it as a warning about Trump's Muslim ban (one of his surrogates suggested during the transition that Roosevelt's executive order could be a model for the new administration);
Thomas Shapley in Crosscut wrote about a small community newspaper on Bainbridge Island that was one of the only local media outlets to speak out against the internment at the time; and,
KING 5's Lori Matsukawa spoke to local residents who were detained in the camps 75 years ago.
(Editor's note: Sol Villarreal is a real estate broker and former staffer in Mayor McGinn's office. His Sol's Civic Minute is a weekly round-up of local news/events.)
Sol's Civic Minute is a weekly email newsletter that I send to my subscribers every Sunday morning at 6 am. As the tagline implies, you can scan the entire thing in under a minute to catch up on what happened in Seattle the previous week. Lots of people tell me it's the only email they get that they read in its entirety, though, so be forewarned that reading the whole thing and clicking on a bunch of the links will take you longer than a minute. My focus is on local politics & government and other related items–the kinds of things that we all want to pay more attention to but that it's tough to take the time to stay up to date on. I spend hours each week reading all the local news I can find so that you don't have to!


Anonymous said…
Thanks for posting this, Melissa. I grew up on Vashon Island with the Matsuda family and we always recognized the hardships they went through during the time of the internment camps. Such an unbelievable time in our history, one I hope we never repeat. My first job was picking strawberries on their farm. For additional history from their perspective, here is a Vashon history link:

-Danielle Clark
Anonymous said…
SPS forced resignations of Japanese American employees:

Apology at 1984 SPS school board meeting;
1986 state action authorizing redress payments:

Yes, FWIW, that has been reported before.
z said…
Melissa, perhaps I'm reading too much into your words, but it almost sounds like you're chiding fwiw for posting this. As tired as I am of his/her dead horse-beating on the topic of HC, I appreciate this link, and it's very apropos to the post topic.

I pay quite a bit of attention to the history of EO9066 in general, but I had not heard this particular story. Thanks for the comment fwiw. The historylink article is a short easy read for anyone remotely interested, Clickable link here
Anonymous said…
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Anonymous said…
Also, in relation to the "muslim ban" I recently read this smithsonian article about six hundred thousand 600,000 Italian Americans in the US who faced travel restrictions. They could not travel more than 5 miles from their house without a permit. They had a curfew and had to be inside their house between 8PM-6AM. They were forced to carry enemy alien cards. 10,000 were also interned, but this is nowhere near the 120,000 Japanese Americans interned.

My g grandparents told us about it as well as they were affected. It was a scary time and they told us they could not speak their native language in public.
Patrick said…
PH, that's interesting. Were German Americans restricted like Italian Americans?
Anonymous said…
Most of the anti-German stuff seemed to occur during WWI. Lots of street names changed and people changed their names during that time.

Anonymous said…
I did find this with Google:

Anonymous said…
It should be pointed out that many more Japanese (2/3 were American citizens) were interned and for the duration of the war. In regards to German Americas, I had read elsewhere that just under 11,000 German Americans were interned and I do not remember if they were nationals or citizens or a combination.

The travel restrictions on 600,000 Italian born American citizens lasted about a year and was lifted on "Columbus Day" in 1942, but the FBI and other agencies continued to violate their rights. From the article "EO 9066 not only allowed the government to arrest and imprison “enemy aliens” without charges or trial, it meant their homes and businesses could be summarily seized." I personally take away from this example that history unfortunately repeats itself and that we need to be more aware of the past.
Anonymous said…
The fact that the US did not mass deport Muslims after 911 is testament to our tolerance. So why don't you stop opening up old wounds.

Here is an amazing resource created by Tom Ikeda, a local guy. He's been working on the Densho Project for 20 years and has interviews, videos, etc.
Anonymous said…
@Trish--love your school! Thanks for visiting. I wish you were in SPS. Everyone...look her up if you don't know her.

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