Essay about Internment of Japanese Canadians

1984 Words 8 Pages
World War Two had a significant impact on Canadian history as the Canadian government revoked many rights and changed the lives of Japanese-Canadians that were interred. Between 1941 and 1945, over 21,000 Japanese-Canadians (in which over two thirds were born in Canada) were limited of their rights and freedom and were forced into internment camps "for their own good". The Japanese-Canadians were considered as enemy aliens by the Canadian government the day after Japan bombed Pearl Harbour. They lost many rights along with it and their property was confiscated as well even though the Canadian government promised that they would receive their property back after the war was over. While the Japanese-Canadians were living in the internment …show more content…
Also, the attack on Pearl Harbour escalated the fear of Japanese-Canadians turning against Canada. Even though most people thought that the Japanese-Canadians were secretly supporting Japan in the war effort, no real evidence was ever found that they sided with Japan. When the War Measures Act was invoked, many Japanese-Canadians lost their jobs and 1200 Japanese fishing boats were seized from their owners by the government (Marsh). Japanese-Canadian cultural institutions and newspapers closed while no more education was available to Japanese students. Also, social life came to a halt for the Japanese- Canadians while they were discriminated against by the media such as the Vancouver Sun, "[…] nobody could separate the sheep from the goats" (qtd. in Hickman and Fukawa 74). All Japanese citizens who were 16 and older and those who became citizens in Canada after 1922 had to register with the Registrar of Enemy Aliens but eventually everyone of Japanese racial origin had to register regardless of their citizenship. At first, Japanese-Canadians were banned from living within 100 miles of Canada's west coast but that was not enough for some people including MP Ian Mackenzie who campaigned to have anyone of Japanese descent interned. The government did not believe that this was necessary and a conference held by the Department of External Affairs proved

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