Resistance at Tule Lake

Resistance at Tule Lake

DVD - 2018 | Widescreen edition.
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The long-suppressed story of 12,000 Japanese Americans who dared to resist the US government's program of mass incarceration during World War II.
Publisher: New York, NY : First Run Features, [2018]
Edition: Widescreen edition.
Copyright Date: ©2018
Branch Call Number: DVD 940.53177 RES
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (78 min.) :,sound, color ;,4 3/4 in.
digital, optical, rda
video file, DVD video, region 1, rda


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Dec 17, 2018

Excellent documentary about the concentration camps established in the United States during World War II. Innocent Japanese families were rounded up and put in sub-standard housing out of our paranoia. There were far more German spies in America during the war, yet this ethnic group was not placed in concentration camps. The Japanese were more easily recognized and had bombed Pearl Harbor, so they were easy to collect and blame. Despite internment, an estimated 33,000 Japanese Americans served in the military during and immediately after World War II Approximately eight hundred Japanese Americans were killed in action during World War II. Most fought in the European theatre. There has been a myth that the Japanese internees were meek and did not protest their horrible treatment. Resistance at Tule Lake documents the efforts of Japanese to fight legally for their freedom. The Renunciation Act of 1944 was an act of the 78th Congress regarding the renunciation of United States citizenship. Prior to the law's passage, it was not possible to lose U.S. citizenship while in U.S. territory except by conviction for treason; the Renunciation Act allowed people physically present in the U.S. to renounce citizenship when the country was in a state of war by making an application to the Attorney General. The intention of the 1944 Act was to encourage Japanese American internees to renounce citizenship so that they could be deported to Japan. Initially, fewer than two dozen Tule Lake inmates applied to renounce their U.S. citizenship. However, on December 17, 1944, it was announced that incarceration would end and the camps would close within a year. The announcement caused collective shock in Tule Lake. Inmates were swept up in panic, consumed by anger, confusion and anxiety over thoughts they would be sent into hostile white communities with the war against Japan still going on. Tule Lake was in chaos, with inmates trying to figure out the best course of action to protect themselves and their families. When army personnel began asking inmates if they planned to renounce and remain in Tule Lake, the message was clear; renunciation would allow a family to remain safe in Tule Lake until the war was over. In the next several weeks, thousands of Japanese Americans in Tule Lake gave up their seemingly worthless citizenship. Most were put on ships back to a devastated Japan. This documentary is an excellent lesson about what happens when hatred and racial bias are used to deprive citizens of their rights. I highly recommend this film Kristi & Abby Tabby

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