Cry Over Manzanar: The History of Executive Orders
The American promise shall never fail anyone
despite the passage of times and hardened hearts
a harvest of shame was ultimately stopped.
In 1942, Fresno County, the most fertile and
richest agricultural area in the nation, saw her own
children ripped out of her heart. The rippling
effects of the Pearl Harbor attack touched
specific residents from the coast to the interior.
the country was at war. Fueled by inflamed
racism, drastic measures were taken.
the morale of these acts was later questioned
when all heads became calm and rational again in 1946
correction through restitution payments
and a language of remorse came to light thereafter
what a cleansing move for the collective soul!
sooner or later, the nation can redress her wrongs
first evacuees along Highway 99, Kingsburg, Selma
and Fowler, the Japanese American citizens were
sent to the barrens with whatever they could carry
they became internees in the rangeland and wastelands
O Manzanar, cry! O Fresno County, cry for your displaced children!
may they find redemption and acceptance like the prodigal son
cry over all those who are excommunicated in the Pacific Coasts!
the Civilian exclusion Order No. 34 impact was real
so was The Internment Order 9066. Shed your tears like watershed
that blesses and produces the bounty and beauty of the whole Valley
citizenship is not only a scrap of paper. Hurry up, Proclamation 2714
Manzanar dirt was as real as the Great Plains Dust Bowl.
like the Colored, Blacks or African Americans, the European Jews,
the Native Americans who were relocated to Oklahoma wastelands,
the Japanese Americans became the new children of pain
The legacy and memories of the Armenian and Rwandan genocides,
Argentinian disappearances are as vivid as those of the holocaust,
Slavery, the dark billows of smoke, sheets of dust and flames
Emanating from the fallen towers. Their marks will survive in history
They cried over the losses of their homes, businesses and cropland
they cried over their new pariah status in the heat and fetid fine dirt
at Manzanar. They became enemy taint, denizen and undesirables
while war may be necessary at times, men should prefer peace
then, they cried over the loss of mercy, compassion, plain decency
rationality, common sense, humanity and brotherhood
for the first time, African Americans were free to flee the vestiges
of slavery and Jim Crow in the Southern states.
their labor became most wanted in the West. Through word of mouth,
they got the good news. San Francisco soon had a new Harlem
for the war efforts, Blacks and Whites were working side by side
workplace integration, but not without any animosities!
With lots of work, hope tends to lie in the future
Mr. Charles is the author of the bestselling ‘The Long Lost Garden of Eden’ and ‘California Blooms, Blossoms, and Harvest Delights’ available on Amazon.com