By Jamya Montrevil, age 11
- I was born on January 30, 1919, in beautiful Oakland, CA.
- In 1942, my family was put in incarceration camps because we were Japanese American. The U.S. didn’t like Japan after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. President Franklin Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 to remove more than 120,000 people of Japanese descent from their homes and force them into prison camps across the United States.
- I chose to resist being put in an incarceration camp, and in May 1942 I was arrested.
- I fought my case and took it all the way to the Supreme Court. Sadly, I lost and the Supreme Court ruled that the incarceration of Japanese Americans was necessary.
- I became a civil rights activist because of the brutal treatment toward people of Japanese ancestry. I helped to lobby for a bill that would force the U.S. government to apologize for incarcerating Japanese Americans during World War II. I also spoke out against the detention of Muslim Americans post-9/11.
- I received a presidential medal in 1998.
- I died March 30, 2005, in Larkspur, CA.
- I have two bright children named Karen Korematsu and Ken Korematsu.
- I believed that no one should be locked away because of their race or ethnicity.
Answer: Fred Korematsu