The Tule Lake Committee announced that registration forms for the 2010 Tule Lake Pilgrimage are available at http://www.tulelake.org. The pilgrimage will take place over the 4th of July weekend, beginning Friday, July 2 through Monday, July 5, 2010.
The 18th pilgrimage will continue the focus on the young adults who were segregated at Tule Lake, especially the “no-nos” and those who renounced their U.S. citizenship while incarcerated at Tule Lake.
Over the past several Tule Lake pilgrimages, the Tule Lake Committee has welcomed the stories of Tule Lake’s dissidents, hoping to learn more about the life experiences that were marginalized and eliminated from the post-war Japanese American narrative.
Tule Lake has been stigmatized as the concentration camp for “troublemakers” and “bad” and “disloyal” people, a carryover of the government’s loyal/disloyal paradigm forced on Japanese Americans. This stigma contributed to the stories of protest at Tule Lake being buried, and helped promote a “model minority” stereotype of Japanese Americans that has been used to undermine other minority groups’ demands for equitable and just treatment.
“Stories about legitimate and courageous acts of grass roots civil disobedience were shunned in favor of stories that enhanced an image of Japanese American loyalty and cooperation,” said Hiroshi Shimizu, who chairs the pilgrimage committee. “Unfortunately, too many Japanese Americans have accepted and internalized the propaganda that labeled Japanese Americans as disloyal if they refused to give unqualified “yes” answers to the loyalty questions.”
“Tragically, the Nisei who refused to cooperate with the government’s incarceration program were stigmatized as disloyal, and silenced—by their own people.”
The Tule Lake Committee is offering free registration to those incarcerated in Tule Lake who are eighty years and older, in hopes of encouraging the participation of Nisei who were young adults while segregated in Tule Lake. The registration fee is all-inclusive and covers charter bus transportation, lodging, meals and all pilgrimage activities for the four-day pilgrimage.
Due to space limitations, attendance will be limited to the first 300 persons who register.
Pilgrimage participants travel together in deluxe, chartered buses that depart from San Francisco, Berkeley, San Jose, Union City, Sacramento, Seattle and Portland. Accommodations are double-occupancy dorm rooms at the Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls.
Thanks to the volunteer work of the Tule Lake Committee members who organize this event, the cost remains low. The registration fee is $395 per person; for students and those on fixed incomes, the fee is $325. The registration fee is all-inclusive, covering chartered bus transportation, housing, all meals, group discussions, workshops, excursions, and the pilgrimage cultural program. For those who were incarcerated in Tule Lake, age 80 and older, the registration fee is waived. The deadline to register is April 30. On May 1, the registration fee goes up to $450, on a space available basis.
Pilgrimage activities include a tour of the Tule Lake campsite and a memorial service. Intergenerational discussion groups provide an occasion to share experiences and help heal the wounds of the incarceration experience. The cultural program of music, dance and spoken-word is open to the public and will be held at the Ross Ragland Theater in downtown Klamath Falls.
Registration forms are available from the contact persons listed below, or may be downloaded from the Tule Lake web site http://www.tulelake.org.
If you have questions or want more information, contact:
- San Francisco: Hiroshi Shimizu (hshimizu -at- pacbell.net, 415-566-2279)
- San Jose: Jimi Yamaichi (jyamaichi -at- att.net, 408-269-9458)
- Sacramento: Grace Kajita (tulelake -at- att.net, 916-392-5416)
- Seattle: Stan Shikuma (sktaiko1 -at- mac.com, 206-919-1465)
- Los Angeles: Soji Kashiwagi (soji910 -at- msn.com, 626-351-1073)
- Japan: Sachiko Takita (stakita -at- yokohama-cu.ac.jp, 045-787-2099)
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