Today marks the anniversary of FDR signing executive order 9066, which authorized the “indefinite detention” of nearly 150,000 people on American soil.
The order authorized the Secretary of War and the U.S. Army to create military zones “from which any or all persons may be excluded.” The order left who might be excluded to the military’s discretion. When President Franklin D. Roosevelt inked his name to EO9066 on Feb. 19, 1942, it opened the door for the roundup of some 120,000 Japanese-Americans and Japanese citizens living along the west coast of the U.S. and their imprisonment in concentration camps. In addition, between 1,200 and 1,800 people of Japanese descent watched the war from behind barbed wire fences in Hawaii. Of those interned, 62 percent were U.S. citizens. The U.S. government also caged around 11,000 Americans of German ancestry and some 3,000 Italian-Americans.
Don’t forget that this happened, and don’t forget that this proved that the US Government is willing to invoke race as a category of subordination.
Both my grandparents were interned at Manzanar and whenever I ask my grandpa about it, he’s reluctant to go into details, and he has never mentioned any of the difficulties he experienced while there. But I know that his mother died there because of poor medical services. And he was a teenager at the time, and the country that he was born into told him and my family that they were not welcome, that they were not to be trusted. I can’t even imagine what that could do to a person.
But the last time I talked to him about his time there, he said “Just remember that we proved them wrong. They put us in camp, then made us fight for them, but we served our time and we proved them wrong.”
Every time anyone mentions fdr in a positive light jus mention this