THE JAPANESE AMERICAN CREED
Read before the US Senate and printed in the Congressional Record, May 9, 1941 and submitted to the House Select Committee Investigating National Defense Migration
I am proud that I am an American citizen of Japanese ancestry, for my very background makes me appreciate more fully the wonderful advantages of this Nation. I believe in her institutions, ideals, and traditions; I glory in her heritage; I boast of her history; I trust in her future. She has granted me liberties and opportunities such as no individual enjoys in this world today. She has given me an education befitting kings. she has entrusted me with the responsibilities of the franchise. She has permitted me to build a home, to earn a livelihood, to worship, think, speak, and act as I please--as a free man equal to every other man.
Although some individuals may discriminate against me, I shall never become bitter or lose faith, for I know that such persons are not representative of the majority of the American people. True, I shall do all in my power to discourage such practices, but I shall do it in the American way--above board, in the open, through courts of law, by education, by proving myself to be worthy of equal treatment and consideration. I am firm in my belief that American sportsmanship and attitude of fair play will judge citizenship and patriotism on the basis of action and achievement, and not on the basis of physical characteristics.
Because I believe in America and I trust she believes in me, and because I have received innumerable benefits from her, I pledge myself to do honor to her at all times and in all places; to support her constitution; to obey her laws; to respect her flag; to defend her against all enemies, foreign or domestic; to actively assume my duties and obligations as a citizen, cheerfully and without any reservations whatsoever, in the hope that I may become a better American in a greater America.
(Read the modified extract on the monument inscription)
Mike Masaoka's testimony before the House Select Committee Investigating National Defense Migration, February 23, 1942. Masaoka is answering questions by Rep. John J. Sparkman, an Alabama Republican.
REP. SPARKMAN: But in the event the evacuation is deemed necessary by those having charge of the defenses, as loyal Americans you are willing to prove your loyalty by cooperating?
MR. MASAOKA: Yes. I think it should be...
REP. SPARKMAN (interposing): Even at a sacrifice?
MR. MASAOKA: Oh, yes; definitely. I think that all of us are called upon to make sacrifices. I think that we will be called upon to make greater sacrifices than any others. But I think sincerely, if the military say "Move Out," we will be glad to move, because we recognize that even behind evacuation there is not just national security but also a thought as to our own welfare and security because we may be subject to mob violence and otherwise if we are permitted to remain.
REP. SPARKMAN: And it affords you, as a matter of fact, perhaps the best test of your own loyalty?
MR. MASAOKA: Provided that the military or the people charged with the responsibility are cognizant of all the facts.
REP. SPARKMAN: Certainly. That is assumed.