Controversy is a theme we as humans face in modern times most frequently. On one side of the fence, people hold their ground, support what they believe in, and shun any possibility of hearing out or trying to understand the other side. This automatic response is a result of stubbornness to have an open mind or due to more realistic views such as not wanting to be seen as the morally incorrect guy. These trends are noticed in our modern-day politics. For example, it is very common to see our bright celebrities supporting the democratic party which is the more “morally positive” half while the republicans are seen as “heartless.” We do not see many republican celebrities as it taints the people’s view on them and may lead to their jobs and roles being affected. Who knows how many people are suppressing their true feelings in order to appeal to the general consensus? In order to combat the influence the public has on people, I will explore Executive Order 9066.
Executive Order 9066 took place following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Enacted by Franklin D. Roosevelt, this order would effectively force anyone in America of Japanese descent to move into incarceration camps while leaving their past possesions to rot in their now abandoned homes. This led to the government eventually seizing the Japanese properties and turning it into profit. Although this can be seen as racially motivated and taking advantage of the Japanese, understanding Franklin D. Roosevelt is how I am growing as a person. Rather than taking the easy way out and assuming he was a racist, I believe Roosevelt truly had righteous intentions to protect the majority of America during a time of anguish, by suppressing the unfortunate few.
Especially after the bombings of Pearl Harbor, innocent American lives were taken. He pressed the Executive Order to prevent any disaster to reoccur. By taking an extra step of precaution, he assured that his people remained safe at the expense of a population of his Japanese American men. Roosevelt had his head in the right space, he wanted to assure national security but in doing so took away the freedom of man. If he has taken the conditions of the Japanese into more consideration, this whole situation could have been avoided. Making such a leap from the free city of California to a dusty incarceration camp is difficult but was never taken into consideration. It was rather a heartless demand, printed in words with no representation to challenge this oppressive law.
Thinking more expansively has made me question the thought process Roosevelt must have under went. The most simplistic way of comparing the costs and benefits of the Order comes with a risk and rewards list. If Japanese loyalists had attacked America from the inside, what would Roosevelt have to say? He would be fighting a two-faced war, one international and one internal. America would be in a very vulnerable, weak state if this were to happen. Supressing the population is and sounds terrible, but to Roosevelt, it sounded better than America crumbling. If I was in a position where I could speak to Roosevelt first before allowing the law to pass, I would most likely be convinced of his policies due to his values but would try to make living conditions farther from poor and more to sought for.
I don’t want to say I support his actions, but at least I can understand them. Defending an undefendable point shows maturity as understanding both sides becomes a necessity.