Densho Digital Archive
Frank Abe Collection
Title: Art Hansen Interview
Narrator: Art Hansen
Interviewers: Frank Abe (primary); Frank Chin (secondary)
Location: Los Angeles, California
Date: February 22, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-hart-01-0003

<Begin Segment 3>

FC: Dramatizations of what?

AH: Well, when Jimmie came out, there, a number of people, including Frank Chin and Lawson Inada and Frank Abe, put on dramatizations of the draft resistance. And that a number of the draft resisters participated in it as did, as did Jimmie Omura. And these were held in San Jose and in Los Angeles among other places. And there were different reunions for the resisters. And this was important, too, because instead of having to mute the things that they did, they could vocalize them and actually receive affirmation and applause for what they accomplished. I only attended the reunion in Los Angeles at the Methodist Church in the early '90s, but I've read about the other ones in the vernacular newspapers and elsewhere.

FC: The effects on you of attending, your opinion as a historian, as a social critic.

AH: Of attending the one at the Methodist Church?

FC: The one that you saw.

AH: I was really impressed by that particular event because I could see that there were still some of the draft resisters whose wife resisted the fact that they were going public with their story. And that in spite of that strong family resistance, people still came out. The other thing that struck me was the fact that if there were some family inhibitions, there were also some intergenerational kinds of affirmations. That we have three generations of some of the families all speaking out with pride about the role that their father had, you know, been involved in in World War II. And so to see somebody like Grant Emi, you know, linking with his father Frank in a reading, I thought was extremely powerful. To see people like Hannah Holmes, who had been dragged out of a school for the deaf in Berkeley, want to go and have her picture taken with Jimmie Omura. How much she loved what Jimmie represented as well as what she loved about Harry Ueno, people who did have the courage of their convictions. And here is a person who is literally deaf and yet somebody else is giving voice through their actions, through their words, to the sting of what she had felt as a result of her situation. I mean, here's a person that goes to Manzanar, there's one other deaf person there. One person reads lips, the other signs and their parents disallow them from, from interacting with one another so she's not in any community at all.

<End Segment 3> - Copyright © 1998, 2005 Frank Abe and Densho. All Rights Reserved.