I put together this documentary on the Manzanar War Relocation Center in California — one of ten interment camps the Army used to house Japanese-Americans without charge or trial after the bombing of Pearl Harbor during WWII. We happened to pass by it off the side of the road during a filming road trip back in 2020 prior to the lockdowns and when I saw the guard tower at the entrance to a national park, I had no idea what it was.
Despite having earned a master's degree, I had never been taught about the history of Japanese-American internment in school, and that includes two university level American history classes, one of which specifically covered WWII supposedly in-depth. I wouldn't learn about it until years later during my own history research. Why wasn't this history ever taught?
The reason this dark lesson in America's history is so important to face is so that human rights violations like this one are never allowed to happen again.