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Assignment/Activity TitleJapanese Internment Letter

Portfolio CategorySocial Awareness/Ethics


The Japanese Internment Letter was my first foray into ethics and social awareness this year. It has enormously
contributed to my growth in this category simply by reminding me that it was an option, and that I enjoy it. By requiring
the use of legal arguments using the Constitution and Bill of Rights, this assignment reminded me that I have considered a
career in law. This is what I think school should be about: helping students find what they want to do, and teaching them
how to do it, which I think this assignment was effective in doing, by helping me interpret law.
To complete this assignment, I used the provided laws, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, as well as the class
discussions we had done on Japanese internment, to form logical, ethical arguments against Japanese internment. Because
I only had one page, double spaced, this forced me to make my arguments clear and concise, without wasting space on
anything that was not essential. However, because the assignment was a letter to the editor, I also had to work in some
character, as if I was a person from 1943 writing a letter to the editor of their local newspaper. I think I created an
effective balance between the two, which is not easy for me. The fact that I accomplished this is one reason I wish to
include it in my portfolio.
This assignment seemed to me at first like a critical thinking assignment. It involved interpretation of documents
and logical reasoning, two things that are part of critical thinking. Yet, the more I read over it, the more I understood that
this was even more so a social, ethical assignment. The arguments that I made against Japanese internment were logical
and legal, yes but they were also ethical. I argued that Japanese internment was not only unconstitutional, but unjust as
there was no evidence that Japanese American had the motivation to become enemy spies, and that if they were being
interred for their relationship to country with which we were formally at war, the same should be done for German and
Italian Americans.
If I could do this assignment over again, I think I would keep the same essential arguments, but appeal more to the
ethical reasoning behind this. It seems more in character as an angry citizen to appeal to the humanity of their fellow
citizens by explain the unethicalness of the situation, and would probably generate a bigger response than legal arguments.
This social appeal would have been more effective than the logical appeal.
Overall, I chose this assignment for my portfolio reflection because I was impressed with how well I did, and
because I think it informs my future, which is the purpose of these reflections.

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Assignment/Activity Title
SkillWriting, Media, Research.
Reasoning, Ethics.


Metacognitive ReflectionThe following questions ARE NOT A

SCRIPT!! Use the ideas within the questions to reflect on the
assignment and its significance to you.
Your reflection MUST use Times New Roman font, size 11, single

How does this assignment reflect your growth in the category in which you are
placing it?

How have you changed as a result of this assignment?

Why is it important to include this piece in your portfolio?

How and where does this fit in with your prior knowledge?

How do you think that others will react to this product?

What process did you use to complete the product?

What did you learn by doing this assignment?

How does the portfolio product illustrate the connection(s) you've made
between yourself and the course material?

In what ways would you do things differently if you could do it over again?

What did you discover about yourself?

How does it relate to your future?

How does it illustrate your strengths and/or weaknesses?

What obstacles and challenges did you have to deal with, and how did this
struggle change you?

How does the portfolio product show that your perspective on the world has

How does it relate to your understanding of the world around you?

Which of your accomplishments makes you feel most proud?

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