Speaking Up! Democracy, Justice, Dignity

日系アメリカ人の地位回復を果たした「市民自由法」制定25周年を記念して、全米日系人博物館は、2013年7月4日から7日にかけてワシントン州シアトルで、第4回全米会議『Speaking Up! Democracy, Justice, Dignity』を行いました。この会議では、民主主義、正義、尊厳をテーマに、新しい見識、学術的論考、コミュニティの観点を紹介しました。

このシリーズでは、今回の会議で発表されたさまざまな視点からみる日系アメリカ人の体験談だけでなく、会議に参加した方々の反応などを中心に紹介します。

会議についての詳しい内容は、全米会議のウェブサイトをご参照ください>> 

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Speaking Out in Seattle: The JANM Conference

I was privileged to attend the 2013 Japanese American National Museum conference in Seattle. It commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Civil Liberties Act of 1988, granting surviving Japanese Americans redress for their wartime confinement. The conference was a concentrated and rather intense experience, for a number of reasons.

I arrived at the conference on Friday, July 5. Sadly, I missed out on the morning planning session for Tule Lake, which I heard afterwards had been quite a lively session. Once I was registered, I went around the hall greeting people I knew and being introduced to others.

The first ...

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Honoring My Issei and Nisei Ancestors

The most important reminder that surfaced throughout each chapter in our family’s history was that it all happened on American soil. Despite setbacks, losses, hardships, and interruptions in their lives, they still found fertile ground in which to make a living, to raise children, and to enjoy life with friends in a community that offered opportunities for a good life. I am grateful that they chose to do it on Bainbridge Island!

My grandparents, immigrants from Japan, were among many families who settled B.I. in the early 1900s. Grandpa, Jitsuzo Nakata, was born in 1875; Grandma, Shima, in ...

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Tule Lake - Part 2 of 2

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I was having the time of my life, working a few hours a day as a dishwasher in the mess hall and devoting the rest of my time to what I loved—acting, reading, writing, and meeting people with similar interests. Camp life was great. But it all came to an abrupt end in February 1943 with the so-called “loyalty registration,” which was a joint order by the Army and the WRA to facilitate the Army in recruiting volunteers and the WRA in moving us out of camp. All male and female internees seventeen and older were ...

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Tule Lake - Part 1 of 2

When we arrived at Tule Lake in the morning, we were greeted by a man who claimed to be our Block Manager. It was nice to have someone welcome us on our arrival at this desolate place near the northern border of California. “If you need anything just ask me,” he said. He provided us with mattresses and Army blankets; we unpacked and settled in.

After the miserable experience in Arboga, we were excited about the flush toilets in the latrines. In fact, we made a special trip to the latrine to check them out—two rows of porcelain toilets ...

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Free Streets

It was in March of 1946, the morning after my brother, sister, and I came out of camp. We had been given $25 each and a free ride on the train. The train seemed better than the old milk train with the shade drawn that took us to Tule Lake in 1942. After being held until almost the closing of camp, we were finally released. I guess we were used to being confined, but camp was nearly deserted. We were beginning to wonder when, if ever, we would be given the notice to leave. Mother was already out and living ...

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