Walker Art Center


February 14, 2003

america , the myths continue ...

tonight our film team watched a work-in-progress , which is very similar territory to our own focus for our upcoming documentary which will investigate the loss of civil liberties and immigrant detentions ...
this project from a japanese american director draws parallels to the japanese internment during ww2 to what is happening to muslim and arab american communities following 9. 11 and how those communities are coming together and fighting racism now , building coalitions, and creating inclusive values and safe space for diverse cultures to come together and celebrate their differences.

this is a brief entry for a very deep topic , cause it's been a long day, but i thought it would be useful to announce :

we are in research mode for this project and we would like to receive any links and information regarding people + organizations who have inspiring ideas for engaging the public in protecting the rights of immigrant communities... i.e. kein mensch ist illegal, noborder.org , etc.

anecdotes to share , contacts for interviews , thoughts , ideas , etc.
send to :

( or send comments here to the blog )


historical backround:

>> Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066, which permitted the military to circumvent the constitutional safeguards of American citizens in the name of national defense.

The order set into motion the exclusion from certain areas, and the evacuation and mass incarceration of 120,000 persons of Japanese ancestry living on the West Coast, most of whom were U.S. citizens or legal permanent resident aliens.

These Japanese Americans, half of whom were children, were incarcerated for up to 4 years, without due process of law or any factual basis, in bleak, remote camps surrounded by barbed wire and armed guards.

They were forced to evacuate their homes and leave their jobs; in some cases family members were separated and put into different camps. President Roosevelt himself called the 10 facilities "concentration camps." <<

and part 2 :

>> In the wake of September 11th, over 1100 people, mainly Arabs, South Asians and Muslims, have been rounded up by the FBI and INS. They are being kept in detention, many on the basis of secret evidence or no evidence at all, and without contact with a lawyer or their loved ones. The government has refused to reveal their identities or whereabouts. They have been "disappeared."

Further, since December, 2002, the INS has detained over a thousand Muslim, Arab, and South Asian immigrants, in a campaign of forced registrations.  In Los Angeles alone, hundreds were forced into cells designed for 20, deprived of food and water, and subjected to strip searches days into their incarceration.  Many have been deported. <<

to be continued.

peace + urgency,

Posted by pod(s) at February 14, 2003 04:48 AM
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