Japanese American Internment Camps

1880 Words8 Pages
Between 1942 and 1945, thousands of Japanese Americans, regardless of United States citizenship status, received orders to evacuate their homes and businesses. Sparked by rising fear amongst the American people after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, a Naval base in Hawaii, the U.S. government relocated Japanese Americans to remote areas on the West Coast and in the south, isolating them in internment camps. With no actual evidence supporting the creation of internment camps, the U.S. interned Japanese Americans because of Japanese involvement in Pearl Harbor resulting in a rise of anti-Japanese paranoia sparked by the economic success of Japanese Americans, increased fear and prejudice within the United States government and amongst citizens,…show more content…
American born, second generation Japanese Americans, called Nisei, acquired citizenship status as part of their birthright, allowing many of them to become economically successful business owners and farmers. The attack on Pearl Harbor provided an excuse for white Americans to increase their hostility toward Japanese Americans business owners. It further offered white farmers and business owners an opportunity to aid in the elimination of unwanted competitors by expressing their increased fears and anxiety toward fellow Japanese business owners and neighbors. The head of the California Grower-Shipper Vegetable Association, Austin Anson, told the Saturday Evening Post: “If all of the Japs were removed tomorrow, we’d never miss them, because the white farmers can take over and produce everything the Jap grows.” Anson expressed a deeper concern toward the economic success of Japanese business owners stating, “They came to this valley to work, and they stayed to take over. They offer higher rents than the white man can pay for land. They undersell the white man in the…show more content…
Over 110,000 Japanese Americans up and down the Pacific coast received numbers and involuntarily relocated to ill-equipped, over-crowded assembly centers at stockyards, fairgrounds, and racetracks, eventually reassigned to one of ten internment camps in remote areas of Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona, Idaho, Arkansas, Utah or California. Surrounded by barbed wire and guarded by armed soldiers, families lived in poorly built and overcrowded barracks with no running water and very little heat. Forcing Japanese Americans into camps deprived them of their liberty, a basic constitutional
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