Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Minoru Kiyota Interview
Narrator: Minoru Kiyota
Interviewers: Tracy Lai (primary), Alice Ito (secondary)
Location: Klamath Falls, Oregon
Date: July 3, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-kminoru-01-0012

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[Ed. note: This transcript has been edited by the narrator]

AI: You also wrote in your book that, during this time after you had renounced, and that you were having some regret of -- feeling that maybe it was a mistake. From your writing, it sounded like you were in a very low state of mind. That you...

MK: [Laughs] Anyone would (feel) pretty low. (Tule Lake was a glooming site.)

AI: Could you tell a little bit about what happened that brought you out of that?

MK: Depression? State of depression?

AI: Yes. What got you out of that state?

MK: Oh. What got me out of that? Well, it was (people) like Opler, Collins, and a (handful) of Christian pacifists, (who had visions beyond the immediacy of events, who inspired me to pursue higher education after the war.) You see, one thing people (tend to overlook are the churches in Tule Lake. Sometimes reference is made to the Buddhist church. But rarely is reference made to the Christian Church. Its minister was Reverend Grubbs (with a congregation of about twenty.) (...) They were against administration policy and came to defend the renunciants. (...) I'm not a Christian, but I think in all fairness, their contribution should be recognized -- particularly in view of the fact that many Buddhist leaders, ministers, of honganji in particular, they represented (the) radicals. I don't want to embarrass these guys, but I knew many of them were on the forefront of emphasizing militarism and nationalism. In contrast, (...) this small Christian group transcended the realm of loyalty. (...) That's the reason that, I think it was tomorrow, I'm going to deliver a eulogy on behalf of Tom Grubbs, (not withstanding the fact that) I'm not a Christian. It doesn't matter. (...) Tom Grubb was a great man. (...)

<End Segment 12> - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved.