The topic I choose to right about is the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII. The question that I intend to answer today is: The Constitution guarantees American citizens no imprisonment without due process of law, yet has been violated by the federal government in at least two American wars. How did the government justify interning Japanese-American citizens in World War II? In order to understand why this happened we have to first look at what happened. We are going to look at a couple things in this paper: The Executive Order of 9066 and Korematsu v. United States (1944). As well as we are good to look at just why the U.S. decided to not give these people the basic
Humanity has seen great horrors throughout the course of history, one them being the Holocaust during World War II. As we look down upon the Germans of that time, the U.S. had their very own holocaust. President Roosevelt issued the Executive Order #9066 on February 19, 1942, which allowed the relocation of tens and thousands of Japanese Americans to internment camps, stripping them of their rights; the reason being that these U.S. citizens were of Japanese descent. There are other possible reasons Japanese were sent to these camps, such as being secure after the attack on Pearl Harbor; however, social and racial attitudes was most significant because Japan attacked, and there was a war going on, so what chances are there that more Japanese won’t follow, whereas the other two were formed from that discrimination and racism.
Japanese internment camps from 1942 to 1946 were an exemplification of discrimination, many Japanese Americans were no longer accepted in their communities after the Bombing of Pearl Harbor. They were perceived as traitors and faced humiliation due to anti-Japanese sentiment causing them to be forced to endure several hardships such as leaving behind their properties to go an imprisoned state, facing inadequate housing conditions, and encountering destitute institutions. The Bombing of Pearl Harbor occurred on December 7, 1941 (Why I Love a Country that Once Betrayed Me). This led president Roosevelt to sign the executive order 9066, which authorized the army to remove any individual that seemed as a potential threat to the nation (“Executive Order 9066”) This order allowed the military to exclude “‘any or all persons from designated areas, including the California coast.”’ (Fremon 31). Many Japanese opposed to leave the Pacific Coast on their own free will (Fremon 24) . Japanese Americans would not be accepted in other areas if they moved either.Idaho’s governor stated, Japanese would be welcomed “only if they were in concentration camps under guard”(Fremon 35). The camps were located in Arizona, Arkansas, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, and California where thousands of Japanese Americans eventually relocated. (“Japanese Americans at Manzanar”) The internment lasted for 3 years and the last camp did not close until 1946. (Lessons Learned: Japanese Internment During WW2)
The U.S. internment of people of Japanese descent during the 1940s was a major event in U.S. history, but it is often overlooked by many. It affected hundreds of thousands of people of Japanese descent, whether they were citizens or not. The incarceration of those placed in camps was affected mentally and it caused many of the internees to develop PTSD or otherwise commonly known as post-traumatic stress disorder (Potts, 1994, p. 1). The camps affected how the Japanese were viewed in society during the time period of the camps and following the liberation of them. It also changed how the Japanese viewed society. This paper will focus on the cultural and social aspects of the Internal Improvements.
The internment and cruel treatment of the Japanese in the U.S. stemmed from a fear of a full-pledged invasion from Japan and also from years of racial prejudice
The relocation of Japanese Americans was an event that occurred within the United States during World War II. On February 19th, 1942, Franklin D. Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066, which forced all Japanese Americans living in the West Coast to be evacuated from the area and relocated to internment camps all across the United States, where they would be imprisoned. Approximately 120,000 people were sent to the camps and the event lasted through the years 1942 and 1945. The main cause of the relocation and internment of these people was because of fear made among Japanese people after Japan had bombed Pearl Harbor in 1941. Citizens of the United States had been worrying about the possibility of Japanese residents of the country aiding Japan, and/or secretly trying to destroy American companies.
In February 1942, President Roosevelt signed the United States Executive Order 9066, requiring all Japanese Americans to submit themselves to an internment camp. The camps functioned as prisons, some families living in one room cells. The camps were guarded by American military personnel, and others were surrounded by barbed wire. Meals were served in mess halls, bells signalling meal time. The portions were small, starchy and dull. and milk was only supplied to children under five. The camps did have school and medical care, and the internees were payed small amounts by the government to do long hours of work. Though some internees did die from inadequate medical care or high levels of emotional stress. Japanese were only allowed to bring a few things from home such as children’s toys, pictures, and books.
Shortly after the first bombs were dropped on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941, the American people’s fear of the Japanese grew dramatically, especially for those Japanese living in America. Almost every Japanese American was seen as a threat to the country. On February 19th, 1942, Executive Order 9066 was issued by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, authorizing the relocation of Japanese Americans to camps further inland. Over 175,000 Japanese Americans were affected in some way by the order, even though more than 70,000 of them were born in the United States and were American citizens. The common perspective of the American people was shown through their use of the expression “A Jap’s a Jap,” virtually destroying the thought that any
While many Americans of the time would argue that any Japanese-looking person could have been dangerous and anti-America, in reality, the U.S. simply hated Japan and their culture which was shown through societal racism. Firstly, a document published in 1942, states, “All Japanese look very much alike to a white person-it is hard for us to distinguish between them… Many Japanese-Americans have been educated in Japan. Many, believers in Shintoism, worship the Emperor and regard his orders as superior to any loyalty they may owe the United States.” (Document H). Clearly, many white Americans felt that internment could be justified by the fact that it was hard to tell which Japanese-looking people were pro Japan and which were pro United States, therefore meaning that they should all be held captive. These Americans misunderstand the situation by getting the false impression that
On February 19th 1942, Roosevelt signed the executive order 9066. Under the terms of the order, people of Japanese descent were placed in internment camps. The United States’ justification for this abominable action was that the Japanese American’s may spy for their Homeland. Over 62% of the Japanese that were held in these camps were American Citizens. The United States’ internment of the Japanese was a poor and cowardly method of ‘keeping the peace.’ The United States was not justified in stowing away Japanese Americans into almost concentration camps. This act goes against the basic Bill Of Rights granted to all American citizens, the Fifth Amendment's command that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due
The decision to imprison Japanese Americans was a popular one in 1942. It was supported not only by the government, but it was also called for by the press and the people. In the wake of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941, Japan was the enemy. Many Americans believed that people of Japanese Ancestry were potential spies and saboteurs, intent on helping their mother country to win World War II. “The Japanese race is an enemy race,” General John DeWitt, head of the Western Defense Command wrote in February 1942. “And while many second and third generation Japanese born in the United States soil, possessed of United States citizenship, have become ‘Americanized,’ the racial strains are
When the Japanese Americans migrated to the United States they were not welcomed with open arms. The Japanese Americans faced many hardships. The biggest hardships they faced were their treatment by the American people as well as by the American government after the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Japanese Americans were taken from their homes and placed in internment camps for years with little to no explanation as to why. According to the United States government the Japanese Americans placement in internment camps “were justified on national security grounds” (Brooks), but the truth is Japanese Americans were placed in internment camps because of fear and racial prejudice. This event in history is important because it
While World War II had been ongoing since 1939, Japan had been fighting for the Axis powers, against the United States. In 1941, when Japan had attacked Pearl Harbor, the United States government had assumed the viewpoint that the Japanese were not to be trusted, and that the Japanese-American citizens of the United States were much the same. As such, they had resorted to establishing internment camps, or preventive labor prisons, so as to keep them in check and ostensibly to prevent further Japanese sabotage. However, the government’s actions were not fully justified, as several factors had interplayed into the circumstances that directly contradicted the intentions and visible results of the internment of the Japanese-Americans, in the social, political, economical, and cultural aspects. On the whole, the internment camps served as drastic measures which were not wholly without reasoning; contrarily, those factors in support of the internment camps did not override those which had gone against it, since the United States’ own legislation, in the form of the Constitution and other laws, had explicitly prevented the depriving of human rights, privileges, and pursuits, which had doubtless applied in light of the Japanese-Americans’ universal citizenship along the Pacific Coast in the early 1940s. As such, while the internment camps were not completely unjustified and without purpose from the viewpoint of the government, they did not align with standards of law and
On December 7,1941 Japan raided the airbases across the islands of Pearl Harbour. The “sneak attack” targeted the United States Navy. It left 2400 army personnel dead and over a thousand Americans wounded. U.S. Navy termed it as “one of the great defining moments in history”1 President Roosevelt called it as “A Day of Infamy”. 2 As this attack shook the nation and the Japanese Americans became the immediate ‘focal point’. At that moment approximately 112,000 Persons of Japanese descent resided in coastal areas of Oregon, Washington and also in California and Arizona.3
The Japanese-American Internment was a necessary choice, made by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It helped to make our nation secure during times of extreme emergency and it also helped the US government to keep their enemy under watch. “The story of how Japanese American soldiers from the war’s most highly decorated US military unit came to be there is just one part of a remarkable saga. It is also a story of one of the darkest periods in American history, one filled with hardship, sacrifice, courage, injustice, and finally, redemption. It began more than a hundred years ago” (Sandler, 2013, p. 6). At the turn of the 21st century began the immigration of the Japanese to America for various reasons, but all with one thing in mind: freedom. “We talked about America; we dreamt about America. We all had one wish – to be in America” (Sandler, 2013, p. 6). The decision by these many people was a grueling and tough decision, but they knew it would benefit them in the long run. “…like their European counterparts, they were willing to risk everything to begin life anew in what was regarded as a golden land of opportunity” (Sandler, 2013, p. 6). When they came to America, they were employed and were able to begin their new lives for the first part of it.