Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

"
If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

"
Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot,
by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse.
" -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Sunday, December 11, 2016

A Bit of Forgotten History

We weren't the only country to intern its citizens based on their being of Japanese heritage.

Canada did the same thing and, arguably, did it with more severity. The Canadians effectively made the internees pay for being interned by seizing their property and selling it off- everything from land to clothing. Many of the internees were housed in inhuman conditions and effectively used as slave labor.

After the war, Canada sought to deport Canadian citizens of Japanese origin. Nearly 4,000 people were stripped of their citizenship and departed to Japan. The Canadians eventually gave up on that, but they restricted the rights of Canadian citizens of Japanese origin until four years after the war ended. Initial compensation for confiscated property was minor, at best.

As in the States, things began to change in the 1980s. Those who were deported and were still alive in 1988 had their Canadian citizenship restored.

3 comments:

The New York Crank said...

The psychological damage these internments do, even if just "temporary," can be stunning.

I'm an old guy. Back in my college days, one of my classmates was a Japanese-American. She told me that she grew up in an internment camp, and thought it was normal life. She didn't know any other. She was a precocious little kid who read comic books — in those days full of anti-Japanese propaganda, which she believed. You know, "Slap the Jap." That sort of thing.

One night, some relatives of hers were brought into camp, arriving after midnight. The family, figured they'd get everyone's long term sleeping arrangements sorted out the next day. For the night, they put a boy cousin of hers in her bed, where she was already sleeping.

Several hours later she woke up, and ran screaming to her mother, crying out, "Mommy, mommy, there's a Jap in my bed." Her mother then had to explain to her that she was a "Jap," too. When she told me the story, roughly 15 years later, you could still see the pain on her face.

Yours crankily,
The New York Crank

Borepatch said...

I'd never heard of this.

Anonymous said...

My grandmother and her family were booted out of their home on Vancouver Island and sent to the New Denver camps in the British Columbia interior; from there, they found their way to southern Alberta, where they met my grandfather. She and I only ever talked about this a handful of times -- it was too painful, and too hard, to talk about the loss of everything they'd owned and worked for in the twenty-odd years before the internments started. Basically every Japanese family on the coast can tell a similar story; I have friends whose families returned to their former homes only to discover their white neighbors had stolen everything that wasn't nailed down (and, in a lot of cases, stuff that was). 70 years later, I'm still wary of shopping in particular family-owned stores, simply because the older generation stole whatever they could. Oh, the government helped... but that doesn't make it any easier.

Ironically, my grandfather's uncle had joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force in 1916, and was killed in Ypres in August of 1917 -- one of 56 Japanese Canadians who went to Europe and never came home. And that was how they thought about it, as a fight on behalf of the Dominion and for Britain.