47th Annual Manzanar Pilgrimage Set for April 30, 2016

LOS ANGELES — Kodomo No Tame Ni: For The Sake Of The Children/Liberty and Justice For All is the theme for the 47th Annual Manzanar Pilgrimage, sponsored by the Manzanar Committee, scheduled for 12:00 PM PDT on Saturday, April 30, 2016, at the Manzanar National Historic Site, located on U.S. Highway 395 in California’s Owens Valley, between the towns of Lone Pine and Independence, approximately 230 miles north of Los Angeles (see map below).

Each year, more than 1,000 people from all walks of life attend the Pilgrimage, including students, teachers, community members, clergy and former incarcerees. Planning is underway for the afternoon event as well as for the Manzanar At Dusk program, scheduled from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM that same evening.

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Manzanar NHS Receives Funding For Block 14 Latrine Building

The following is a press release from the National Park Service.

Historic photograph of toilets in one of the latrines at the Manzanar concentration camp during World War II.
Photo: Toyo Miyatake/Courtesy Toyo Miyatake Studios

INDEPENDENCE, CA — The National Park Service has announced receipt of $15 million in grant funding supporting 69 projects in 63 parks, including $74,547 to Manzanar National Historic Site to construct a historically accurate latrine. The non-working latrine and its exhibits will complement the other buildings in Block 14. The Block 14 “demonstration block” gives visitors a sense of the living conditions endured by more than 110,000 Japanese Americans in Manzanar during World War II. The funding will be matched by more than $150,000 in donations from Friends of Manzanar and private donors.

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Manzanar Committee Decries Donald Trump’s Recent Remarks On Muslims, Japanese American Incarceration

To download a copy of this statement,
click on the image above.
(Adobe Reader software required to view/print)

LOS ANGELES — On December 9, the Manzanar Committee repudiated comments by Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump, who called for barring all Muslims from entering the United States, and just one day later, stating that he might have supported the incarceration of over 110,000 Americans of Japanese ancestry in American concentration camps during World War II.

“Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on,” a campaign press release stated on December 7.

“Without looking at the various polling data, it is obvious to anybody the hatred is beyond comprehension,” Trump said, in the statement. “Where this hatred comes from and why we will have to determine. Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victim of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life.”

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How The Japanese American Community Should Commemorate the 74th Anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor

The cemetery monument at the Manzanar National Historic Site.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: National Park Service

LOS ANGELES — On this day, the 74th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, many Japanese Americans will grit their teeth, expecting to see anti-Japanese comments, not to mention the racial slurs and racist comments that our community has had to endure for our entire history.

But today, perhaps we should keep our collective chins up and ignore those insults, epithets and comments. After all, given the circumstances, this year, December 7 should remind the Japanese American community of what the attack on Pearl Harbor meant for us…the unjust incarceration of over 110,000 of us—two-thirds citizens by birth—in American concentration camps, because of racial prejudice, wartime hysteria and a failure of political leadership.

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