A second wave of terrorism is occurring in America.
Bigotry and hatred have been unleashed against Americans of Arab, Islamic, South Asian and even Native American heritage, leaving many who look or dress differently from most white Americans afraid to leave home.
As third generation Japanese Americans we feel a deep sense of obligation to speak out in support of Arab American community in light of the violence and hate messages being directed at them.
We know what it is like to be the target of such feelings. In the aftermath of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry who were, our parents, friends and many of us, were incarcerated during World War II. Over two-thirds were American citizens by birth and over one-half were children. All were prisoners of war.
Many of us carry lasting psychological and emotional effects. That is why we know this must never happen again to another group of people.
We Americans, who strongly believe in freedom, justice and liberty for all, must not allow violence and discrimination to fall blindly on the Muslim and Arab American communities or on anyone who only looks “different” or “like the enemy.”
Let us learn from our past. We urge everyone to take some overt action to show acceptance and support for the Muslim and Arab American communities. What can you do?
1. Speak out whenever see an act of bigotry or hatred.
2. Reach out to Muslims and others in your community.
3. Urge your legislative leaders to protect the rights of Americans and immigrants.
4. Become the person you would want to have standing up for you if such acts were directed against you.
Members, Sansei Legacy Project:
Sharon Senzaki, San Francisco
Rich Tatsuo Nagaoka, St. Helena
Dr. Kay Yatabe, El Cerrito
Fumi Knox, Oakland
Marion Hironaka Cowee, Albany
Pat & Matthew Shiono, San Francisco
Joyce Yamada, Pinole
Carl Mune, Fremont
Dale Komai, Mill Valley
Grace Morizawa, Berkeley
Marjorie Fujioka, Berkeley
Jane Watanabe, San Francisco
Carl Mune, Fremont