Almost 80 years ago during World War II, 122,000 Japanese-Americans along the West Coast were forced to leave everything behind and imprisoned in internment camps. Kaz Ideno was born in California and spent nearly four years of his childhood at camps in Arkansas and Texas. "I don't know what made me arrive to the conclusion that we're in jail," said Ideno. "We're in prison." Illinois is the first state to require teaching Asian-American history — including this hurtful chapter — in all public schools.
Class discussion: What do you know about Asian-American history? Have you learned about the World War II internment camps for Japanese-Americans, including U.S. citizens? The United States was also at war with Germany and Italy during World War II. Why were people of Japanese descent rounded up and interned, but not citizens of German and Italian descent? Does the imprisonment of thousands of men, women and children without trial threaten our own civil rights? Why or why not?
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