Before WW2 had started the U.S was still in turmoil due to the lasting effects of the great depression. They planned on solving this problem by continuing to adopt a policy of isolationism, assured by the Washington Naval Conference they turned a blind eye to current events happening in the Europe and the Pacific. Germany under Hitler’s totalitarian command was preparing an attack on Poland which would start WW2. Meanwhile in the Pacific Japan had started its conquest of Imperialism so it could become a world power. First they took over Manchuria, they proceeded to take over French controlled Indochina, the U.S placed sanctions on trade with Japan which cut off resources that Japan needed in order to continue building its navy, which would eventually lead to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Japan had become the strongest naval power at the start of WW2. During WW2 the U.S somewhat changed a lot, in terms of racial prejudice and equality.
To begin with a domestic change that occurred in the U.S at the start of World War 2 would be the integration on women into factory work. Prior to this Factory jobs were worked by white males. Women were encouraged to take up men factory roles. This change brought about a sense of empowerment to women as they somewhat gained a type of economic independence, and they were given better jobs (Doc3). The start of World War 2 also took away the equality and status of Japanese Americans. The Japanese attack on pearl harbor left many Japanese Americans under constant scrutiny from the Government as they believed that they were spies. Due to rising paranoia FDR passed executive order 9066; which placed Japanese Americans in internment camps. Many of them lost were forced to sell their property at low prices and lose all their property. This violated Japanese American rights, as many of them were American Citizens who were either born here, or naturalized (Doc2).
During World War 2 many changes happened regarding racial prejudice and racism. The start of World War 2 would allow African Americans to enlist in the military, although they would be in segregated units. Despite continuing to face Discrimination African Americans still dedicated their loyalty to their country in hopes of getting Freedom abroad, and at home (Doc3). There was also racial prejudice towards Latino’s who fought alongside whites even though they fought alongside them.
Although World War 2 might have brought changes towards racial prejudice there still continued to be existing and persistent problems that happened. A continuity that we see that occur during World War 2 would be the violation of people’s rights. In World War 1, the Supreme Court came to the verdict is Schenk vs U.S that during clear and present danger, human rights could be taken away. This can be seen happening in World War 2 as Frank Korematsu tried to sue the U.S because he was a citizen of the U.S and was being treated as an enemy of war, however the Supreme Court overruled his hearing due to wartime emergencies.
In Conclusion the U.S states changed somewhat in terms of racial prejudice and equality as African Americans were allowed to fight in the war, and Women were allowed to take on pre-dominantly white, male jobs.