RACISM AFTER PEARL HARBOR DAY
SAKAGUCHI: As it, it applied to me at the time?
SAKAGUCHI: Well, I can remember within a very few days after that, that, uh, people really looked. Because right after Pearl Harbor... there was a lot of things said because, they didn't know us, generally, they didn't know us so they couldn't, they made all kinds of accusations, especially when, uh, in, uh, California when they said that the Japanese, people of Japaense ancestry living in Hawaii had lot to do with, with, h, with that attack on Pearl Harbor. Like guiding the pilot, the airplanes, and they had stories like, uh, they cut the sugar cane so that it would point to Hickman and it was really un, uncomfortable, uh, because right after Pearl Harbor, I guess..... Oh, uh, not long after the war, they, the story about the evacuation came up. In our area, they went around asking people to sign whether they would, were in favor of evacuation and I would...the story, would you want these people to come back. And the principal of our high school wrote and said he didn't want us to come back.
INTERVIEWER: He did?
SAKAGUCHI: Did not want, okay? And uh, and he, he signed that, he put his name to that thing before we evacuated and I remember talking to my classmates who were not Japanese, but they couldn't say, well, well used to call him, he was small, so he'd, we used to call him peanuts. And we'd say we couldn't understand why peanuts would sign anything like that because he only had two daughters, okay? If, we could understand if he had a son, it could, I guess their rationale was, if he had a son who could be drafted into the army, or something like that. And, and, I think that most of the people realized that I was an American citizen.