Civil Liberties and the Constitution Teacher Workshop

  • en

Jan 201228
1:00p.m. - 3:00p.m.

Japanese American Museum of San Jose
535 North 5th Street
San Jose, California, 95112
United States

The Japanese American Museum of San Jose (JAMsj) and the Korematsu Institute proudly present a teacher workshop, "Fred Korematsu: Civil Liberties and the Constitution."
Teachers of students from grades 1 to 12 are invited to a workshop to learn content and instructional strategies to teach students about the internment of Japanese Americans during WWII, the violation of civil liberties, the role and responsibilities of government, and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Teachers will receive a teaching kit, which includes lessons for all grade levels. Ling Woo Liu, Director of the Korematsu Institute, will present the lesson plans from the kit and a DVD about Fred Korematsu.          
Fred T. Korematsu was a national civil rights hero. In 1942, at the age of 23, he refused to go to the government's incarceration camps for Japanese Americans. After he was arrested and convicted of defying the government's order, he appealed his case all the way to the Supreme Court (Korematsu v. United States). In 1944, the Supreme Court ruled against him, arguing that the incarceration was justified due to military necessity.
In 1983, Professor Peter Irons, a legal historian, together with researcher Aiko Herzig-Yoshinaga, discovered key documents that government intelligence agencies had hidden from the Supreme Court in 1944. The documents consistently showed that Japanese Americans had committed no acts of treason to justify mass incarceration. With this new evidence, a legal team of mostly Japanese American attorneys re-opened Korematsu's 40 year-old case on the basis of government misconduct. Korematsu's conviction was overturned in a federal court in San Francisco. It was a pivotal moment in civil rights history.
Korematsu remained an activist throughout his life. In 1998, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, from President Bill Clinton. In 2010, the state of California passed the Fred Korematsu Day bill, making January 30 the first day in the United States named after an Asian American. Korematsu's growing legacy continues to inspire activists of all backgrounds and demonstrates the importance of speaking up to fight injustice.
For further information or to make a reservation, contact Paul DeWitt at or call (510) 796-0121. Due to limited seating, registration is required and will be filled on a first come, first served basis.


JAMsj . Last modified Jan 09, 2012 9:35 a.m.


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