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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- As the plane began descending toward the Sacramento airport, the green patterns of the farm fields below shifted to suburban housing developments, then to a scattering of rectangular high rise buildings surrounding the golden dome of the state capitol. I tried to locate the Victorian structure of the Crocker Art Museum but the plane quickly flew past the downtown area and was again descending over farm fields. I could now see the airport approaching. I was arriving for the opening of one of the Japanese American National Museum's traveling exhibits, "Henry Sugimoto: Painting An American Experience" at the Crocker Art Museum of Sacramento.

This trip, however, was more than my fulfilling my duties as the Chairman of the Japanese American National Museum. Sacramento is a special place to me. It was to this land, one hundred years ago, that my grandparents came from Hiroshima, Japan. It was here that my grandfather began farming, growing strawberries, plums, and hops. It was here, in an old Victorian farmhouse that my mother was born. It was here in the soil of Sacramento, the capital city of California, that my American roots were first planted.

The exhibit of Henry Sugimoto's paintings is also very personal to me. When World War II began, this gifted artist was among the 120,000 Japanese Americans who were rounded up by the U.S. military and incarcerated in American internment camps. He painted scenes of his imprisonment in the two camps in Arkansas -- Rohwer and Jerome. Rohwer was the camp to which my family was sent from our home in Los Angeles. I look at Sugimoto's paintings of the camp landscape and they remind me of the swampy creek where I used to play by the barbed wire fence. I remember the scenes he painted of the communal hubbub in the washroom, where babies were bathed as well as the laundry done. I recognize the picture in his painting of the long line at the mess hall where we queued up three times a day for our meals. I look at these paintings by Henry Sugimoto and I'm reminded of the fear and anxiety of fellow Americans that sent us into that barbed wire imprisonment. I hear from these images on canvas, the resonance of the fear and anxiety felt today toward people of Middle Eastern descent. These paintings of sixty years ago are profoundly relevant to our times today.

We live in a time of terror. When in public places, when in congested places, certainly when we're at the airport, we feel an indefinable sense of anxiety.

A dark, bearded person might fill us with some unease. That nervousness is not irrational. We are responding to what we have read, heard, or seen. That sense of unease might be called experiential "racial profiling." But race has to be just one part of the whole picture. That dark, bearded person might be a student or a dentist or a salesman -- nothing more. Simple racial profiling is an inadequate rationale for anxiety. Indeed, a terrorist can look like the all-American boy next door - like Timothy McVeigh.

We are Americans, the most diverse people on this planet. We look like the people of the world - every race in every shape and form. We are also a people who subscribe to the rule of law - not of racial discrimination. We believe in a system of due process where a person cannot be detained without charges, due cause or right to counsel. That is what makes our system of justice so great. Yet, at times of stress, our government can react hastily and without clear thinking. In the aftermath of September 11th, Middle Eastern immigrant men have been detained without charges and without counsel, their families uninformed of where the men had been taken or when they might be released. It was exactly the same with Japanese immigrant men immediately after Pearl Harbor. This kind of racial profiling ultimately resulted in a most egregious violation of the U.S. Constitution - the wholesale removal and incarceration of all Japanese Americans from the West Coast. There was no due process - no charges, no trial, just imprisonment by race. The scenes that Henry Sugimoto painted from his "American Experience" have this profoundly important cautionary message for our times today.

The opening of the exhibit of Henry Sugimoto's works in Sacramento was a great success. I'm told that this was the biggest opening in the history of the Crocker Art Museum. In my mother's hometown, in my state capital, where my roots go down deep, my own American experience was hugely well received. The exhibit will be in Sacramento until March 24, 2002.

Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay

Have you ever been reading a book, watching a movie, or even sitting down for a fantastical cartoon and began to salivate when the characters dig into some doozy of a made up food?

You're not alone.

Food is apparently fertile ground for creativity. Authors, movie directors, and animators all can't help but put a little extra time and effort into the process of making characters' tasty delights mouthwatering even for audiences on the other side of the screen.

Read on for a perfect mixture of nostalgia and hunger.

AllWhammyNoMorals asked, "What's a fictional food you've always wanted to try?"

Some people were all about the magical foods eaten in the magical places. They couldn't help but wish they could bite into something with fantastical properties and unearthly deliciousness.

Nutritious

"Enchanted golden apple" -- DabbingIsSo2015

"The Minecraft eating sounds make me hungry" -- FishingHobo

"Gotta love that health regeneration" -- r2celjazz

"Pretty sure those are based off the golden apples that grant immortality. Norse mythology I think?" -- Raven_of_Blades

Take Your Pick

"Nearly any food from Charlie and the Chocolate factory" -- CrimsonFox100

"Came here to say snozzberries!" -- Utah_Writer

"Everlasting Gobstoppers #1, but also when they're free to roam near the chocolate river and the entire environment is edible." -- devo9er

Peak Efficiency

"Lembas" -- Roxwords

"The one that fills you with just a bite? My fat a** would be making sandwiches with two lembas breads and putting bacon, avocado and cheese inside. Then probably go for some dessert afterwards. No wonder why those elves are all skinny, eating just one measly bite of this stuff." -- sushister

Some people got stuck on the foods they saw in the cartoons they watched growing up. The vibrant colors, the artistic sounds, and the exaggerated movements all come together to form some good-looking fake grub.

The One and Only

"Krabby patty 🍔" -- Cat_xox

"And a kelp shake" -- titsclitsntennerbits

"As a kid I always pretended burgers from McDonalds were Krabby Patties, heck from time to time I still do for the nostalgia of it all. Many of my friends did the same thing." -- Thisissuchadragtodo

Cheeeeeeeeese

"The pizza from an extremely goofy movie. The stringy cheese just looked magical lol" -- ES_Verified

"The pizza in the old TMNT cartoon as well." -- gate_of_steiner85

"Only bested by the pizza from All Dogs Go to Heaven." -- Purdaddy

Get a Big Old Chunk

"Those giant turkey drumsticks in old cartoons that characters would tear huge chunks out of. Those things looked amazing, turkey drumsticks in real life suck and are annoying to eat."

-- Ozwaldo

Slurp, Slurp, Slurp

"Every bowl of ramen on any anime, ever." -- Cat_xox

"Studio Ghibli eggs and bacon" -- DrManhattan_DDM

"Honestly, any food in anime. I swear to god half the budget no matter what the studio goes into making the food look absolutely delicious." -- Viridun

Finally, some highlighted the things that aren't quite so far-fetched, but still far enough away that it's nothing we'll be eating anytime soon.

That tease can be enough to make your mouth water.

What's In It??

"Butter beer" -- Damn_Dog_Inappropes

"came here to say this. i was pretty disappointed with the universal studio version which was over the top sweet. it was more of a butterscotch root beer. i imagine butter beer to be something more like butter and beer, which wouldn't be crazy sweet, but would have a very deep rich flavor" -- crazyskiingsloth

Slice of the Future

"The microwave pizzas in back to the future two" -- biggiemick91

"I've been fascinated with those for years! They just look so good!" -- skoros

As Sweet As They Had

"The Turkish Delight from Lion Witch & Wardrobe. The real ones I had weren't bad but nothing special." -- spoon_shaped_spoon

"Came here to say this. I know it's a real thing, but I always imagined that it must have been amazing to betray your siblings over." -- la_yes

"You're used to freely available too sweet sweets. For a WW2 era schoolkid, it would have represented all the sweets for an entire year." -- ResponsibleLimeade



Here's hoping you made it through the list without going into kitchen for some snack you didn't actually need.

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Image by Sammy-Williams from Pixabay

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