I’m Japanese and French (predominately). I live in California, and although my high school was very racially mixed, there were only 6 students out of 2,000 who were Japanese. So every year, in history, when we’d cover Pearl Harbor or the Japanese internment camps, all the eyes in the classroom would focus on me. And every year I’d just stare down at my desk because I felt guilty and sad. Guilty that half my ancestors did that and sad that my other ancestors put the rest of them in camps for it. Until I found out that my grandparents met in one of the camps. My dad’s parents met, fell in love, and got married in an internment camp. They had two kids, and then my dad had my three brothers and me. So every year after that I still felt guilty and sad, but in class I had the courage to hold my head up. And at the end of the day, I’m proud to be a Japanese American.

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