Enduring Democracy: The Monterey Petition


Hammer Theatre Center, San Jose Sun, Aug 21, 2022 1:00 PM
Pruneyard Cinemas #1 Sun, Aug 28, 2022 5:00 PM
Film Info
Type of Film/Event:Feature
Runtime (minutes):67
Premiere Status:World Premiere
Original Language:English
Cast/Crew Info
Cast:Ed Ricketts Jr
Don Tamaki
Director:David C. Schendel
Executive Producer:Carolyn McCombs
Producer(s):David C. Schendel
Elizabeth Nordt
Screenwriter:David C. Schendel
Cinematography:John Honoré
Jeremy Widen
Harold Escotet
Cliff Traiman
David C. Schendel
Music By:Matt Montgomery
Tom Disher
Editor:Jesse Spencer


In a dusty filing cabinet in Monterey, California, a 1938 film is discovered that depicted a joyous Japanese-American community just before their lives are destroyed. Along with this remarkable never-before-seen film was a trove of signed petitions demanding the restoration of civil rights to those same Americans. "Enduring Democracy: the Monterey Petitions" explores the motivations of individuals who financed hate campaigns as well as the daring women who spearheaded the carefully thought-out response.

The battle was fought in the editorial pages of several newspapers as racists emboldened by Anti-Japanese war propaganda posted full page ads to discourage Japanese Americans from returning to their homes and businesses. Inspired by Mollie Sumida's letter to the editor written while imprisoned in camp and impervious to threats of violence, residents banded together to get their community to sign Toni Jackson's petition pledging "The Democratic Way of Life for All."

Additional Information

This Film Presented by

and in Honor of