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Japanese Americans Join the Fight for Black Reparations Story-level




When Miya Iwataki and other Japanese Americans fought in the 1980s for the US government to apologize to the families it imprisoned during World War II, black politicians and civil rights leaders were an integral part. of the movement.

Thirty-five years after they won that apology, and prison camp survivors were awarded $20,000 each, those advocates are now demanding atonement for African-Americans whose ancestors were enslaved. From California to Washington, DC, activists are joining revived reparations movements and pushing for the government to formally compensate for the lasting damage of the legacy of slavery on later generations, from access to housing and education to the right to vote and employment.

Advocating for reparations is “the right thing to do,” said Ms. Iwataki, a 70-year-old resident of South Pasadena, California. She cited the cross-cultural solidarity that has built up over decades.

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