An Open Letter to the Incarceration Apologists in Our Comment Section

First of all, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule of being triggered by other people’s gender pronouns, asking women what they were wearing, and trying to debunk “white privilege” with anecdotes about your blue collar background. We know you have many choices when you engage in online trolling, and we thank you for flying Densho.

We were completely unaware that the president who authorized the incarceration of Japanese Americans during WWII was Franklin Delano Roosevelt—a Democrat!—before you bravely pointed it out in our comments section. This information is definitely not featured prominently in our archives, encyclopedia, website, blog, and promotional materials. Until you came along, we had labored under the childish belief that racism is a complex and deeply ingrained system that crosses class, political affiliation, and nationality. You are the first person in the whole world who has ever made this astute and original observation. Your eight followers on Twitter are truly blessed with a wise and thought-provoking leader.

Furthermore, your observation that Germans and Italians were also detained was profound and not at all beside the point. The 0.1% of the German American population and even smaller fraction of Italian Americans interned during WWII is absolutely, 100% equatable with the military removal of the entire West Coast population of Japanese Americans. The experiences of European immigrants who were considered white within one generation of arriving in this country is practically a mirror image of the decades of race-based immigration bans, anti-Asian legislation, mob violence, state surveillance, and Yellow Peril propaganda that preceded the Japanese American incarceration of WWII.

Speaking of neglected history, we owe you a debt of gratitude for reminding us of who is really to blame for this tragedy of justice: the many traitorous Japanese Americans who provided aid to their blood brothers in the Empire of Japan. The sinister doings of the Black Dragon Society—exposed to the public in a 1943 film that is obviously a documentary and not a fictional movie—have been ignored by the Liberal Establishment for too long. IT WAS WAR. What were they supposed to do, abide by the laws of our country to determine guilt or innocence like a bunch of soft-hearted suckers? Besides, it’s really hard to tell those Nips apart. I mean… I’m not racist, but all Asian look same, amirite? [Raughs]

Theatrical release poster for the 1943 movie serial documentary G-Men vs. The Black Dragon. Courtesy of Republic Pictures.

And don’t even get us started on the equally reprehensible cover up of the Niʻihau Incident. When will someone write a book or make a movie about this crucial and, despite not being mentioned even once in War Department and White House discussions of Executive Order 9066, completely relevant piece of evidence?

Finally, we wish to thank you for your sage advice to, as you so eloquently put it, stop whining about the past and get over it already. What naivete to think history—literally the chain of events that created the world we live in today—has anything to do with current events! What folly to inject race into a conversation about racism! Indeed, it was hateful and divisive for us to even bring up this topic in the first place, as everyone knows racism ended with the election of Barack Obama in 2008.

Thank you for showing us the error of our ways. We will now convene our staff members to carry out the traditional seppuku ritual and erase the stain of our great dishonor.

Sincerely,

The Feminist Harpies & Leftist Cucks of Densho

By Densho Staff

[Header photo by Thomas D. McAvoy. The LIFE Picture Collection, Getty.]

10 Comments
    • 10/04/2018 at 17:27

    Can’t tell you how good it feels to hear this Asian voice from the Feminist Harpies and Leftist Cucks at Densho! Truly affirming! Thank you!

    • 10/04/2018 at 18:25

    Thank you for injecting some humor into a tired, predictable conversation.
    (I snickered so hard that my slanted eyes wouldn’t open!)

    • 10/04/2018 at 18:54

    You forgot to mention that the places everyone called concentration camps WERE NOT CONCENTRATION CAMPS!!!!
    Do better, Densho. Do better.

    • 10/04/2018 at 19:42

    Oh my god. I love this so much!!! Thank you for making my day with this brilliant piece.

    • 11/04/2018 at 0:13

    This is fire. This made my day.

    • 11/04/2018 at 3:53

    Well said! Loved it!
    Signed, a fellow “Sneaky Jap”

    • 11/04/2018 at 16:39

    Snarky! And totally awesome. Thanks for articulating this for us, Densho!

    • 11/04/2018 at 19:23

    @Eric Muller I had a conversation with an elderly Jewish woman and her grandson some time ago. When talking about the incarceration of Japanese Americans, and used the word “concentration camps” to describe their experience, she disagreed with the way I was using the term. To her and many, it was a completely contrasting experience, and that concentration camps meant something else. However, her grandson felt a little differently. To him, Japanese-Americans were indeed sent to concentration camps (concentration meaning a close gathering of people and things) , while those of Jewish ancestry (to him and his family) were sent to death camps. To him, by using the word “concentration” instead of “death” shifted the way people thought and felt about the camps. It took a little bit, but his grandmother began to see his perspective.

    • 18/04/2018 at 20:27

    Thanks Densho, for one of the best.replies.ever to Incarceration apologists.
    I was ROR (Raughing out Roud) !
    But seriously, that was one of the best takedowns I’ve ever read.

    • 23/04/2018 at 6:58

    Thanks for your “unusual” support for the American-Japanese US Citizens. At times, as I was reading your comment, I wasn’t sure “which side” you were supporting. But upon further reading, I of course realized that your style of writing was “unusual”, but supportive for the American-Japanese. For which I too believe we’re done a great injustice. You had commented that this injustice was perpetrated by a Democratic President. To me, which Political Party responsible is of no consequence. BUT… I can also say… I fervently Hope & Pray that the current “Republican President” doesn’t become responsible for prejudicial injustices that could yet be done to our current H-1B & H4 Immigrants from India 🇮🇳.

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