Friday, February 19, 2010

Remembering Japanese-American Internment

Today is the anniversary of the executive order leading to the internment of Japanese Americans. The legislature marks it as a day of remembrance:
Legislative declaration for civil liberties day of remembrance.

The legislature recognizes that on February 19, 1942, the President of the United States issued Executive Order 9066 which authorized military rule over civilian law and lives; that Executive Order 9066 led to the World War II evacuation and internment of more than one hundred twenty thousand Japanese Americans, most of whom were United States citizens by birth; that Japanese Americans lost their homes and livelihoods and suffered physical and psychological damage; and that, despite widespread hostility and discrimination, Japanese Americans served with distinction in the United States military effort as members of the Military Intelligence Service and in the segregated 100th Infantry Battalion and the 442nd Regimental Combat Team. The legislature further recognizes that in the name of "military necessity," Japanese Americans were deprived of their fundamental constitutional rights and civil liberties; and that the Japanese American experience during World War II tragically illuminates the fragile nature of our most cherished national beliefs and values.

The legislature declares that an annual day of recognition be observed in remembrance of Japanese Americans interned during World War II as a reminder that, regardless of the provocation, individual rights and freedoms must never be denied.

[2003 c 68 § 1.]
RCW 1.16.090

For online exhibits -- with photos and text -- see the University Libraries' Japanese American Exhibit and Access Project.

Books in the Law Library include:
  • Eric L. Muller, American Inquisition: The Hunt for Japanese American Disloyalty in World War II, D769.8.A6 M85 2007 at Classified Stacks
  • Greg Robinson, By Order of the President: FDR and the Internment of Japanese Americans, D769.8.A6 R63 2001 at Classified Stacks
  • Brian Masaru Hayashi, Democratizing the Enemy: The Japanese American Internment, D769.8.A6 H39 2004 at Classified Stacks
For more, search the catalog for Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945.

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