Becoming active in the Civil Rights Movement

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I think Martin Luther King put it very succinctly. He said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” And that is true, when you think about it. There’s the bit about Pastor Neimohler, the German Protestant minister. He said, “At first the Nazis went after the Jews, but I was not [a] Jew, so I didn’t do anything. Then they went after the Catholics, but I wasn’t a Catholic, so I didn’t speak up. Then they went after the working man, but I wasn’t a working man, so I remained silent. Then they went after the Protestant clergy and by then it was too late for anybody to do anything.” And if that were true in Germany, I think it’s just as true in this country, if we don’t watch what we’re doing, stand guard, and band together, and speak out against injustice.

Date: August 27, 1998
Location: Pennsylvania, US
Interviewer: Darcie Iki, Mitchell Maki
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

civil rights

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