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L.A. Day of Remembrance 2017: ‘Unite to Uphold Our Civil Rights’

The Day of Remembrance is held annually to commemorate President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signing of Executive Order 9066 on Feb. 19, 1942, which resulted in the unjust incarceration of over 110,000 Japanese Americans and their immigrant parents in American concentration camps and other confinement sites during World War II.

“The experience of the Japanese American community serves as a stark reminder to our country to protect civil rights for all and stand against bigotry so that what happened to our community will never happen again to anyone, anywhere,” said Richard Katsuda of Nikkei for Civil Rights and Redress (NCRR).

“The passage of Executive Order 9066 75 years ago marked the beginning of one of the darkest periods for civil rights in our nation’s history,” said Mitch Maki, president of Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC). “Racism, fear and greed were allowed to surface above our nation’s commitment to its core value of equal protection under the law. Out of this context, Japanese Americans chose to serve in the armed forces and demonstrate their loyalty to the nation that had abandoned them.

“While Executive Order 9066 is among the worst actions that our nation has committed, the response of the Japanese American veterans represents the best of what our nation can produce.”

The program will feature former Bay Area congressman Mike Honda as the keynote speaker.

“As the Honorable Mike Honda was unsuccessful in his recent re-election race, the Japanese American community has lost a fierce and tireless advocate in Congress,” said Katsuda. “However, he would be the first to proclaim that now is the time to step up our efforts to resist any efforts like a Muslim registry. Our World War II experiences must be told over and over to remind our government and our nation, ‘Never again!’”

Joining Honda will be former congressman and former secretary of transportation Norman Y. Mineta. Also speaking will be representatives of the Muslim, Native American, Latino and African American communities. Cultural performers include Dan Kwong, Nobuko Miyamoto and UCLA Kyodo Taiko.

Sponsors of the Los Angeles Day of Remembrance 2017 are: GFBNEC, JACL Pacific Southwest District, JANM, Manzanar Committee, NCRR, Progressive Asian Network for Action, Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden, and United Teachers Los Angeles.

JANM is located at 100 N. Central Ave. (at First Street) in Little Tokyo. The event is open to the public with “pay what you wish” admission to the museum.

For more information, call (773) 671-3719 or email

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