My trip to Minidoka came to an end as I walked back through the site of the baseball diamond…
The field was reconstructed by a team of volunteers, the work of the Friends of Minidoka.
How many dreams had been launched on bleachers, watching a game, thinking about life after Minidoka?
I walked past two more of the buildings on the Minidoka site…
An office building of some sort.
A building near the new Visitors Center that is under construction.
As I continued to walk, I could not help thinking about all the young men who had served so valiantly and loyally in the U.S. Army in WWII…
The young Minidoka men listed above, died in combat in the European theater.
I turned to walk out of Minidoka, ready to go back home…
The end of my journey? Not really… Rather, recognizing a life long quest to understand. Why do we allow these things to happen in our country, this place that is a beacon of hope to so many?
“Most white Americans were willing to sacrifice civil liberties in the name of national security as long as they were the civil liberties of someone else.”
Neil Nakadate, in “Looking After Minidoka: An American Memoir”
Grace and peace to you,
Dear Art, The most emotional dagger was looking at all the names of soldiers who died defending our country. The list memorialized here where their parents were incarcerated. I cannot imagine the burning anger, the sadness, the frustration, the utter hopelessness of a government that had lost its way. Are we back to that point again today? Sad! Thanks for sharing and going through such difficult times, Art.
Dear Roy, of all the aspects of the incarceration, the shaming of an entire people with the false charge of disloyalty is the worst. The most utterly poignant thing is the response of the young women and men who felt a double duty to serve, first to country and second to their family honor. They wrote and spoke so many heartbreaking things about serving in order, in part, to restore that honor. The enduring shame, of course, is on the people of dominant culture who put other Americans in such a position in the first place.
Thanks to you, Roy, for sticking with me as I’ve gone on this journey, for sharing wisdom, insight, and friendship!
Art, thank you for putting so much energy and heart into your visits. My mother and Japanese American grandparents lived in Hawaii and so were spared the internment experience although a number of friends did endure it.
Making these events flicker to life is important to all Americans!
Thank you again, Ken
Ken, thanks to you for your kind comment! Anything we can do to tickle the American conscience is a good thing.