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VIDEO: Constitution Day Lecture: Upholding Our Civil Liberties w/ Karen Korematsu

In honor of Constitution Day 2020 (September 17), Dr. Karen Korematsu, Founder and Executive Director of the Fred T. Korematsu Institute and daughter of the late civil rights icon, Fred Korematsu, spoke to the greater UIC Community about the importance of upholding and fighting for our civil liberties and the U.S. Constitution through the lens of her father's landmark U.S. Supreme Court case.

Fred Korematsu was convicted for refusing to comply with Executive Order 9066, which called for the relocation and detention of Japanese Americans during WWII. His case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court on constitutional grounds, where the ruling was upheld in a 6-3 decision. While Korematsu's name was cleared in federal district court in 1983, the SCOTUS decision stands. In his strongly worded dissent, Justice Jackson referred to the government's internment of Japanese Americans as the "legalization of racism" in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

Since her father’s passing in 2005, Dr. Korematsu has carried on his legacy as a public speaker, educator, and civil rights advocate. In 2009, she established the Fred T. Korematsu Institute to advance racial equity, social justice and human rights for all. The Institute’s work has since expanded from K-12 civic education to promoting civic engagement and public participation. In 2015, Dr. Korematsu was inducted as the first non-lawyer member of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association.


Watch the webinar here: