Letters for Sunday, September 24, 2017

• Japanese-Americans excluded as Americans until 1952 • Help fight cancer, give keiki fruits, veggies

Japanese-Americans excluded as Americans until 1952

Ms. Steinmetz, mahalo for expanding the story of treatment of World War II AJAs (TGI, Sept. 17). A related issue began in 1882, impacting all legal Asians — Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, South Asian (Indian) and Korean. It was called the “Chinese Exclusion Act” that eventually excluded all Asians from immigrating and becoming naturalized Americans.

The Feb. 19, 1942, Executive Order 9066 was truly bad, but worst was the Asian Exclusion Act.

One of my two grandmothers, born in 1894 at Huliea, Kauai, married a Japan national and lost her American citizenship in 1911. My other grandmother entered legally as a picture bride in 1913, to wed a Japan national under a sugar plantation contract and could not be naturalized.

My picture bride grandmother adopted Hawaii and America as her new home and country. She raised eight children and sent three of her sons into three different wars (WWII, Korea and Vietnam) and yet, she could not become a naturalized American until 1952.

On June 27, 1952, Congress approved the McCarran/Walter Act, overriding President Truman’s veto, allowing Asian immigrants meeting strict requirements to become naturalized American citizens.

Grandmother who was born in Huleia completed her application and regained her American citizenship in 1954. My picture bride grandmother gained hers in 1960. I remember, as the entire family celebrated and that same year I graduated from Kauai High School.

“Between 1952 and 1965, more than 40,000 first-generation Japanese became U.S. citizens, many after decades of waiting.” (Denso Encyclopedia, author Jane Hong, Harvard University)

I will always believe that the Issei’s or first-generation Japanese are the only “Japanese-American.” All of us that followed are Americans. Americans of many ethnicities.

James Kuroiwa, Kaneohe

Want to help fight cancer? Feed keiki lots of fruits, veggies

Just saw another commercial with a child with cancer. This isn’t right. Children should not be getting cancer. I worked for a children’s cancer organization for two years, 1999 to 2001, in California (Jacobs Heart Children’s Cancer Support Services). Being a nutritionist I was in charge of education of families about the importance of diet.

What I witnessed was families that did not realize how important fruits and vegetables were to a child’s health. Another factor was the majority of these families worked in the pesticide-laden agricultural fields. The majority of us now realize the importance of fruits and vegetables in our diets.

Green food equals anti-cancer foods. Broccoli, kale, green beans, peas, etc. Not all cancers come from diet, but why take a chance? My three kids did not want to eat their vegetables. They would ask “Why do we have to eat vegetables?”

I would say “Because they help prevent cancer.” I would watch them eat their vegetables and ask, “Why are we eating our vegetables?” At least one would answer, “Because it’s anti-cancer.” My heart would sing. It’s not easy getting your children toeat their veggies.

But we as parents have tools (bribes), video games, electronics, dessert. My kids would see their siblings getting dessert (frozen yogurt, fruit), for eating their vegetables and that was all it took.

Linda Bothe, Kalaheo


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