One of a series of rulings relating to the tension between U.S. treaties with Japan and California’s alien land laws, the Tashiro decision gave a broad and liberal interpretation of the privileges guaranteed by treaties, emphasizing the common meanings of the words in a 1911 commerce treaty.
K. Tashiro and other citizens of Japan residing in California petitioned the state government for the incorporation of a Japanese hospital in Los Angeles. State officials refused to consider the petition on the grounds that treaty rights did not extend to the operation of a business corporation. Tashiro and his associates challenged the refusal in state court. When the court agreed with Tashiro’s position, the secretary of state of California petitioned the Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari, which was granted.
The Supreme Court unanimously upheld the ruling of the lower court. Writing the opinion of the Court, Justice
Hyung-chan, Kim, ed. Asian Americans and the Supreme Court: A Documentary History. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1992. LeMay, Michael, and Elliott Robert Barkan, eds. U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Laws and Issues: A Documentary History. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1999.
Alien land laws
History of immigration after 1891
Supreme Court, U.S.