Discuss supreme court case Korematsu v. United States (1944) - Essay Example

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Such behavior has a history for example: this kind of treatment was witnessed after US went to World War II after the attack on Pearl Harbor conducted by the Japanese (Wee, 2004,…
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Discuss supreme court case Korematsu v. United States (1944)
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Korematsu v. United s (1944) Korematsu v. United s (1944) Facts Biased attitude towards those who have migrated to US from Asian nations is not a new behavior. Such behavior has a history for example: this kind of treatment was witnessed after US went to World War II after the attack on Pearl Harbor conducted by the Japanese (Wee, 2004, p.214). After the start of the war there was an increased demand that Japanese individuals residing in America including those who have migrated and even those who were born in the nation were to be looked upon as saboteurs and needed to be evacuated from the Western Coastal regions of US. This was quite an irrational decision because there was no evidence that these individuals were a threat to the national security of US. Walter Lippmann a well renowned columnist stated that no individual is allowed to conduct business and no individual has a right to obtain residence during a war.
During the month of February of 1942, the president of US, Roosevelt accepted and signed the Executive Order 9066 (Niiya, 1993, p.16). This order provided the secretary of war with the authority to recognize certain areas as war zones and due to this label the people living in that area may be removed and restrictions of travelling within that area were even applied. Later, the in charge of the Western Defense Command labeled the entire region of the Pacific Coast as area of military due to its higher probability of being attacked (Bangarth, 2008, p.22). This led to implementation of curfews after which Japanese Americans were initially restricted to leave the area and later evacuated from the region. Later these individuals were held in prison camps because it was believed that all Japanese Americans are traitors. These actions taken by the US government were challenged in the case of Korematsu v. United States (1944) and the outcome of this case was that although the justices of this case accepted that it was necessary for the military to relocate the Japanese Americans and the court accepted the decision taken by the government to detain Korematsu (Polenberg, 2000, p.197). The court legalized the actions taken by the government because the court believed that the action was taken as US was at war with Japan and it was correct to believe that Japanese American could involve in sabotage.
The decision taken by the court during this case was quite significant in nature as the decision clearly stated that the government of US had the right to take any action such as evacuating people from their areas on racial basis. The decision even clearly stated that wartime acts conducted by the government were of higher importance than the rights of an individual such as Korematsu.
This case had a significant impact on the American society; the society was made to believe that even people living in US whether they are friends or family members can be terrorists or sabotagers if they are from a different race and they can be treated in negative manner if the nation was at war with them.
Bangarth, S. D. (2008). Voices raised in protest: defending citizens of Japanese ancestry in North America, 1942-49. Vancouver, BC: UBC Press.
Niiya, B. (1993). Japanese American history: an A-to-Z reference from 1868 to the present. New York: Facts on File.
Polenberg, R. (2000). The era of Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1933-1945: a brief history with documents. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins.
Wee, P. H., & Wee, R. J. (2004). World War II in literature for youth: a guide and resource book. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press. Read More
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