Presentation on theme: "Spring Dr. Kimiko Akita February 5, 2013 The American Schindler and The Japanese Schindler: Ralph Lawrence Carr (1887-1950) and Sempo ( Chiune."— Presentation transcript:
Life@UCF Spring Dr. Kimiko Akita February 5, 2013 The American Schindler and The Japanese Schindler: Ralph Lawrence Carr (1887-1950) and Sempo ( Chiune ) Sugihara (1900-1986)
Ralph Lawrence Carr Ralph Lawrence Carr (1887-1950) Ralph Lawrence Carr Born in Rosita, Colorado, a mining town. Worked way through college. A water rights attorney. State’s U.S. Attorney in Hoover administration during Prohibition. Elected Colorado governor in 1939. Turned down chance to run as VP with Wendell Willkie in 1940.
Governor 1939-43: Restored state’s finances without increasing budget. Rising GOP star, potential presidential candidate. Dec. 7, 1941: Pearl Harbor begins Pacific War. About 70% (93,000) of 127,000 Japanese-Americans living on West Coast. Anti-Japanese sentiment rises in U.S. 1942: Roosevelt declares martial law. “No Japs/Yellow Perils Wanted.” 10 internment camps in desolate places held 123,200 Japanese-Americans. 70% were born in U.S. 1942-45: Camp Amache, 350 km from Denver; held 7,500 Japanese-Americans.
Carr said: “That’s wrong! They’re U.S. citizens.” Opened Colorado to 3,500 Japanese- American evacuees from West Coast. Principle: Denying anyone’s constitutional rights means denying rights of all Americans. Carr hired Mitchie Terasaki, 92, as civil servant and another Japanese-American as nanny. Results: Threats. “We will kill all Japs.” “Don’t allow Japs into Colorado.” Cost Carr his political career. Served only one term as governor. Lost Senate race in 1942.
Drafted to run for governor in 1950. Won GOP primary but died a few days later. Carr’s bust erected in Sakura Square in1976. Section of U.S. Route 285 and C-480 named Ralph Carr Memorial Highway in 2008. New Colorado state judicial complex named Ralph L. Carr Justice Center. Japanese American Citizens League created award in his honor in 2012.
Sempo SugiharaSempo Sugihara (1900-1986) Sempo Sugihara Born: Gifu, Japan. Samurai family. Father, a medical doctor, stationed in Korea. Wanted Sempo to become doctor, but Sempo rebelled. Earned scholarship and studied in China; learned fluency in Russian. 1924: Secretary of Foreign Ministry; 1932: Diplomat in Manchuria. (Russian wife 1924-35) Became Christian in 1935. Diplomat to Finland in 1937. Became Japanese consulate general in Lithuania in 1939.
1939: German-Soviet Treaty. Russia occupied Lithuania. 1940: Polish Jews escaped into Lithuania. Sought visas to Dutch colony of Curacao. Japanese denied Sugihara’s requests for transit visas for Jews. Disobeyed government; issued at least 2,139 transit visas. 1941: Nazis attack Lithuania; Russians retreat. 196,000 of 208,000 Lithuanian Jews killed. 1944: Soviets reclaimed Lithuania.
1946: Sugihara working in Europe. 1946-47: Imprisoned by Soviets. 1968: B. Gehashra Nishri, Jewish transit VISA receiver, reunited with Sugihara. 1985: Becomes only Japanese to receive Israel’s “Righteous Among the Nations” award. 2000: Japanese officially apologized to Sugihara family, noting humanitarianism. 2005: “Sugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness.” Sugihara: Conspiracy of KindnessSugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness 2011: tsunami/earthquake. U.S. Jewish Orthodox Union said time to return favor for Sugihara’s saving 6,000 Jews. 2012: Boca Raton ceremony honors Sugihara.
Solly Ganor : Lithuanian holocaust survivor. Received visa from Sugihara. Rescued by nisei Allied soldier Clarence Matsumura. Ganor kept his experience secret until 1992. Wrote “Light One Candle” (1995). I met and wrote about Ganor in 1996. 1911: 2 of grandfather’s sisters migrated to Brazil. During WWII, Japanese-Brazilians sent to internment camps in U.S. I met distant Brazilian relative in Japan in 1995. My personal experience
“Extraordinary people who described themselves as ordinary.” — Adam Schrager Carr: Rediscovered by Schrager (2008) Sugihara: Rediscovered by Nishri (1968) They embraced the diversity of humanity. “We are the people of the U.S. If we are sent to a prison because of where our ancestors are from, we will lose our rights.” They set aside self-interest, retained conscience. Courage to stand up for principle. “Life is to suffer, to survive, and to find a meaning in the suffering, and each must find out a purpose in life for himself.”— Viktor Frankl