Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Tomio Moriguchi Interview I
Narrator: Tomio Moriguchi
Interviewer: Becky Fukuda
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: October 20, 1999
Densho ID: denshovh-mtomio-01-0018

<Begin Segment 18>

BF: It seems like, I think you're really on to something, though about the notion that when you were a child, every, the family was more than just the immediate family, even though you have this huge family. It's this exte -- it's larger than that.

TM: Yeah. And looking back, and thinking about it now, I guess my father always, and my mother always had that. So it's just maybe something that, here again influence. They didn't want to, they didn't go out of their way to influence, but we just got influenced some way. And it's fine. Well, in some ways that's a cultural thing. Because my uncle, well my father's cousin anyway, Mr. Kubota, before he says, "Well you gotta join the Buddhist church." I says, "Why?" He says, "Well, you gotta have somewhere to get buried and have a funeral." I says, "Oh, okay." But that's the kind of a cultural thing. You know, they do it for, to save face, or, so they do things. And, you know, you just expand that type of thinking. You don't want to die alone, or you want people to come to your funeral. You say why, but, my wife would've said why? But you know, I guess that's a, especially if you're in business or have a large family, you just think about those things, which is maybe stupid. But you say well, do unto others type of thing. If you go to their funeral, I mean to somebody's funeral, well they'll come to yours and you'll feel good about it or something like that.

BF: Uh-huh.

TM: But, I think it's part of the culture, you've got to do what's good for... to be a good citizen within a culture, I think, is, is a culture that the Japanese, and getting back, homogeneous, outside anyway, from the outside. They put up a front to make it look like everybody's happy and everything, and in back it may not be true. The Japanese culture spend an inordinate amount of time to put up this front to make like everybody's getting along. And maybe --

BF: And, that does make things go smoother.

TM: Well, I think so, and I think, I'm sure we'll get into other issues, but some of the successes of the Japanese organization locally and otherwise have taken advantage of that. And probably, like anything else, it has also hindered parts of other types of developments, because they try to do things so consensus wide, and so appropriate from the outside. Maybe tend to lose the real focus of what we're trying to achieve, or the good of the real, real objective, but I don't know, that's another thing I haven't really thought of too much.

<End Segment 18> - Copyright © 1999 Densho. All Rights Reserved.