In September of 1939, a group of Chinese-American youths—mostly members of the local Kay and Locke families—picketed the Port of Olympia, carrying signs such as “Scrap Iron Makes Japanese Bombs.”
As members of the community, they were asking the Port not to allow the Japanese cargo ship Florida Maru to load iron at the public marine terminal. The mayor, businessmen and county officials issued a petition calling for an end to the picket line “in the interests of the Port of Olympia.”
In WW II, American forces sank the Florida Maru in Papua New Guinea. The anti-fracking protest at the port should be seen as a similar plea for climate security. Here is an opportunity to learn from past mistakes and ask what port actions now might mean for our nation’s safety and security later.