The Justice Center recently co-hosted “The Legacy of Fred Korematsu: A Talk with Dr. Karen Korematsu” at the law school. Dr. Korematsu is the daughter of Fred Korematsu, a civil rights icon who resisted the federal government’s internment of Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II. His case, Korematsu v. United States, was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1944. The court affirmed Korematsu’s conviction and upheld the removal orders. In 1983, a district court in Northern California cleared Korematsu of any wrongdoing. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1998.
Speaking with Professor Arnold Jin of the UT Austin College of Liberal Arts’ Center for Asian American Studies, Dr. Korematsu told her father’s story and reflected on the importance of the Korematsu decision 80 years later. She also talked about her work as the founder and executive director of the Fred T. Korematsu Institute, a nonprofit organization that promotes civic participation and education to advance racial equity, social justice, and human rights.
Dr. Korematsu’s talk at the law school was co-presented by the Center for Asian American Studies and Texas Law’s Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice.