crime

University baseball powerhouse Tokai suspends activities due to illegal drug use

15 Comments

Tokai University, a four-time Japanese national university baseball champion, said Saturday it has suspended all activities of its baseball club indefinitely due to illegal drug use by several members.

According to the university, which has several campuses across the country, some members of the club based in Kanagawa Prefecture have admitted to the drug use at the team dormitory, saying they "used them out of curiosity."

In a press conference held Saturday, university officials said the Kanagawa prefectural police had raided the dormitory the same day, adding the university will cooperate fully with their investigation.

The university said it suspected that the members had used cannabis, but did not elaborate any further.

"We have betrayed the trust (of people), so I would like to offer an apology from the bottom of my heart," university chancellor Kiyoshi Yamada said during the press conference at the Shonan campus in Hiratsuka, Kanagawa Prefecture.

The Tokai University baseball club has won the league consisting of university clubs in the Tokyo metropolitan area 73 times. Many of its members have gone on to play professionally, with its well-known graduates including the Yomiuri Giants manager Tatsunori Hara and ace pitcher Tomoyuki Sugano.

The organizers of the league said the university has pulled out from the current season.

© KYODO

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15 Comments
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This is a huge overreaction for four members who smoked pot. What about all the other members of the team who were not using pot? Just introducing mandatory drug testing would be enough to get rid of the drug users and let the other members complete their season.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Ah yes the war on drugs. How's that going?

11 ( +14 / -3 )

Drugs are already, have always been in Japan, from celebrities, public servants, sports teams. The focusing on draconian laws hasn't stopped any of these people. Educating people and allowing them to make adult choices about their own lives without the government getting so upset about it, is the way the world is heading. It's a health and education issue. Obviously having drugs as some evil that has to be punished just doesn't work. Plant matter is just that.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

You can’t even call cannabis a ‘drug’ anymore. It’s illogical that’s it hasn’t been made legal or at least decriminalized in most, if not all, countries by now.

No, I’m not saying it doesn’t have its downsides (because it does imho) but for it to make headlines anywhere is laughable in this day and age.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

With many countries like Canada and many US states like California, Washington, and Colorado legalizing cannabis, many Japanese are wondering what could possibly be harmful about the drug? The government must either have a convincing reason why cannabis is harmful or it should decriminalize or legalize it. With all the alcohol promotion that goes on in this country, many Japanese are left wondering whats the big deal about cannabis? Why can't responsible adults enjoy that too? Why must alcohol or tobacco be the only vices? Last time I checked, cannabis didn't cause lung or liver disease.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Amazing that this still makes the news. And that people can still equate a bit of draw with the fall of civilization.

Hopefully Japan keeps things very strict with regards to drugs, even the soft stuff like cannabis.

Hopefully not. Otherwise they might as well ban alcohol. Which causes more accidents/violence/deaths than a casual toke on occasion.

I'm aware of some health benefits it might have for some but let's just keep all of it out of Japan please.

It has benefits for epilepsy, glaucoma, post-chemo affects, MS and plenty of other medical complaints. And besides those worthy (not necessarily THC) remedies, it's a social relaxant, an ice-breaker, an aphrodisiac and, y'know (if not overdone) a bit of fun.

Prefer my child growing up in a country where it's still very taboo and frowned upon, so far that is Japan fortunately.

Not going to criticize your parenting skills, but a reminder that the more a parent says "no/bad/don't", the more kids grow up to rebel against such negativity.

Anyway, I wouldn't worry, reckon it's a long way off before legalization ever occurs here.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I'm not aware of the level of drug testing among Japanese student athletes or the prevalence of performance enhancing drug use, but I think the continual single method of demonizing all unauthorized drugs in Japan is pretty short sided in the long run. All it does is make more people curious.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

If the university oyaji were serious, they’d investigate ALL the students, close all their campuses, refund student tuition, and make a deep respectful bow on TV pledging to ‘do better to win back the trust of the nation’. If they were serious.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The pro drug crowd is out in force today. I’m not against legalization per se, but only as a last resort. There are still so many unknowns about marijuana, and it doesn’t have a wide enough user-base/ criminal element to warrant extreme measures like legalization. Harsh penalties on a few users is hardly justification for big changes.

A country with fewer drugs is a country with fewer drug problems, and a country where the status quo will suffice.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Baseballl season is over, anyway...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The university said it suspected that the members had used cannabis

So no actual evidence, they probably agreed to confess in return for no police investigation

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Collective punishment", a fossilized remnant of Japan's long feudal past, is still a knee-jerk instrument of punishment favored by intellectually-challenged authoritarian control freaks who refuse to accept that their "war on drugs" is unwinnable because human curiosity and the pleasure principle cannot be extinguished. In the case of cannabis the law is an ass, as silly as those who try in vain to enforce the unenforceable. The tide of change is not for turning: Japan's youth want to live free at last.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

It’s probably faster to list only the drug-free places or institutions. lol

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Too bad seeing this kind of story but I anticipate more like this coming unfortunately. Hopefully Japan keeps things very strict with regards to drugs, even the soft stuff like cannabis. I'm aware of some health benefits it might have for some but let's just keep all of it out of Japan please. Prefer my child growing up in a country where it's still very taboo and frowned upon, so far that is Japan fortunately.

-7 ( +9 / -16 )

All athletes take drugs, all means ALL.

Police will get busy on the Tokyo Olimpics.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

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