The Internment of Japanese Canadians, Racist or Reasonable?
After Japan bombed Pearl Harbor because of a dispute over trading oil between Canada and Japan, Canadians began to fear Japanese Canadians, were they friends or were they foes? The main fear was that the Japanese Canadians would become spies for Japan, leaking important information, giving Japan an advantage when it came time for an attack. The internment of Japanese Canadians, who lived in British Columbia, in 1942 during World War II, was very unfair and racist. The Japanese Canadians had almost all of their personal possessions and rights taken away, they were harassed because of their race, and were transported to “protective areas.” Japanese Canadians lost almost all of their possessions during World War II. All boats, that belonged to Japanese Canadians were impounded. In 1941, around 1,200 fishing boats were impounded by the Japanese Fishing Vessel Disposal Committee (Masako Fukawa). The Canadian Government feared that if they did not take away the boats, the Japanese Canadians who were spies, would go back to Japan and leak the Canadian Governments secrets. The Canadian Government had also promised to return all possessions, but the promises were soon forgotten and the property was never returned. On January 19th 1942, all possessions which were under protective custody were liquidated (Japanese Internment). When the Japanese Canadians were transported to the protective areas, they were told that the government would temporally take their houses. Once the Japanese Canadians were gone though, the government sold off all of the houses. The Japanese Canadians were also stripped of their rights. They were denied the right to vote, teach or take jobs in civil service, as well as other professions (Linda Di Biase). The Canadian Government feared that if Japanese Canadians had any influence in society, they would try to subliminally enforce Japanese customs and beliefs and try to convince the people to...
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