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Thank You, Voices of Reason

Reader comment on item: Why the Japanese Internment Still Matters

Submitted by Tim (United States), Dec 28, 2004 at 19:03

My father was a POW camp guard in WW2, and from what I have learned, many of the Japanese civilian internees (not to be confused with POWs) had the option of relocating elsewhere in the U.S.; they were not automatically required to move to the civilian evacuation camps in the hinterlands. Unfortunately, many of the internees could not relocate away from the West Coast because they had no relatives living elsewhere in the U.S., nor did they have the means to resettle elsewhere, nor were they dependents of internees who had limited options.

In any event, the camps were not constructed to physically abuse their occupants, and there were very few instances wherein physical harm occurred in them. To refer to these camps as "concentration camps," and to use other terminology implying that these facilities were comparable to the concentration camps created by the Axis powers, offends me as a Jewish American. Because the comparisons are a fabrication and an absurdity.

Do we want to be careful about everyone's civil liberties? Of course. But in these times, doesn't it make sense to conduct more airport searches of the luggage of people flying to and from Moslem countries, and fewer searches of the luggage of Norwegian tourists and American grannies?

We already know the answer, and it doesn't mean we want to see anyone's civil rights violated. It means one thing, primarily: we have a brain.
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