The United States of America interned citizens of Japanese descent during World War II. The 1988 Civil Liberties Act signed by President Ronald Reagan issued a formal apology and $20,000 to each surviving victim of this racist program. It was a dark chapter in American history.
Trump surrogate Carl Higbie believes that bringing back internment camps for Muslim citizens would Make America Great Again.
Higbie appeared on Megyn Kelly's FOX News show, where he dropped the shocker.
“We’ve done it with Iran back awhile ago. We did it during World War II with the Japanese,” said Higbie, a former Navy SEAL and a spokesman for the pro-Trump Great America PAC.
Kelly seemed taken aback by the idea.
“Come on, you’re not proposing we go back to the days of internment camps, I hope,” she said.
“I’m not proposing that at all,” Higbie told her. “But I’m just saying there is precedent for it.”
Casually discussing internment camps as something we do in America is wrong. Pointing out a terrible moment in American history like it was "just a thing we did for a good reason" is horrifying. I was taught to learn history so we can avoid repeating awful mistakes, not use it to excuse current violations of civil liberties. This chapter of our history is a reminder of what we are capable of at our worst, and in the name of good. It is not a green light for bigotry.
Using internment as a threat to argue that it would be less of a big deal to simply “register” American citizens or legal guests because of their ethnicity or religion is by definition unconstitutional. Forget American history, lets look at world history for a moment and think about how this traditionally ends.
Muslim Americans came here for something better. This is not that. We used to be proud that people wanted to come here! Remember this?
I wonder if the surviving interned Japanese Americans kept those letters of apology, or just threw them away?
I recommend donating to the Southern Poverty Law Center to help prevent this, and other forms of hate, becoming our American legacy.