Effects Of Japanese Internment In Canada

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“Let our slogan be for British Columbia: No Japs from the Rockies to the seas” (CBC News, 2001). Japanese Internment commenced on the 24th of February, 1941, and lasted until the 31st of March, 1949, During these years, Japanese Canadians were cruelly mistreated while under the suspicion that they were all enemy aliens after Japan attacked Pearl Harbour on December 7th, 1941. The inequality faced by Japanese Canadians caused great divisions in Canadian society and effected the lives of thousands of innocent people. In Canada, Japanese internment was set in place through the laws set by the Canadian Federal government, and the discrimination perpetrated by white Canadians. These tactics were used to oppress Japanese Canadians to such an extent …show more content…
Politicians in British Columbia often spoke of the Japanese in a way some people found similar to how the Nazis would have spoken about the Jews. Escort Reid stated, “When they spoke I felt in that room the physical presence of evil” (Marsh, 2012, p.2). It did not take long for anti-Japanese sentiment to turn British Columbians against Japanese Canadians (Frede, 2011, p.2). Many Canadian citizens already believed that the Japanese were at fault for the Great Depression and societal issues. Japanese men were also mistreated by their bosses, for example, they were given longer hours with shorter wages, and were assigned the jobs too degrading for white men to do. This took place not only in British Columbia but also in Alberta where sugar beet labour was “Hell on earth” (Marsh, 2012, p.3). Blatant hate towards people of Japanese origin became excruciatingly clear in 1907 during the Vancouver Riot. Vancouver’s Japantown and Chinatown were attacked by 9000 white men, after this act of hatred, the Asians went on a strike that lasted several days until it eventually ended (Hickman, 2012, p.82). However, it was not the citizens of Canada who were most unwelcoming, but those in control of our …show more content…
In order to do so, they devised many strategies to attain this goal. Japanese Canadians have faced discrimination by the Canadian Federal government since the first person of Japanese origin, Manzo Nagano stepped foot on Canadian soil in 1877. The first action made by the Federal government to further oppress those of Japanese origin was to limit immigration by introducing the Head Tax in 1885. This tax originally cost Japanese immigrants fifty dollars per person to enter Canada as opposed to the ten dollar fee paid by the ‘desirable’ Northern Europeans. However, over time the price eventually increased to 500 dollars in 1903 (MTCSALC, 2011, p.1). From then, many other laws were contrived based off the detest towards the Japanese including in 1895 when the British Columbia Government denied citizens of Asiatic origin the right to vote. Also, the ’Gentlemen’s Agreement’ in 1908 which prohibited more than 400 male asiatic immigrants per year to enter Canada (Nikkei, 2016, p.1). As hatred for the Japanese grew, more restrictions were put into place. In the years leading up to Japanese internment, 1,200 fishing boats were impounded, curfews were imposed, and cars, cameras, radios, and land was confiscated due to the distrust of Japanese Canadians during the Second World War and the consuming fear of war being

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