Hikaru Utada Photo: Wikipedia
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Singer Hikaru Utada opens a discussion on racism on Japanese Twitter

58 Comments
By Dale Roll, SoraNews24

As the black community in the U.S. and around the world continues to protest and fight against systemic racism and oppression, Japanese citizens might be scratching their heads as to why. Despite the increasing population of foreign nationals in the country, its people still doesn’t have much experience with racism, and may have trouble understanding where these protests are coming from.

But when singer Hikaru Utada weighed in on the issue, she helped to spark a much-needed conversation among Japanese netizens about the significance of these protests and the presence of racism around the world. She tweeted her thoughts on June 4, in which she said she hopes these activities will become a “historic breakthrough.”

“Racism might not click immediately for Japanese people born and raised in Japan, but what’s happening in America right now might be a historic breakthrough that will be recorded in the world history books of the future…I hope it is.”

She also added a second follow-up tweet to explain the nature of racism in the United States.

“The racism against black people that occurs in the United States is not a simple matter of thinking of people as different races and holding discriminatory thoughts about them. It is a problem that has deep roots in the government and society. I hope people who don’t know much about black history and the current state of affairs, or who only know a little about them, will take this as an opportunity to learn more.”

The original tweet garnered almost 215,000 likes and more than 36,000 comments and retweets, and sparked an interesting debate among Japanese netizens, who normally don’t get much opportunity to discuss racism and discrimination. Though some had contrasting opinions to share, many said they were enlightened by the situation, and expressed agreement with Utada’s sentiments.

“Those still doubting that racism is a problem better remember how the coronavirus sparked discrimination against Asian people until just recently.”

“It certainly will be! I hope we can make this a world that doesn’t see color.”

“Racism doesn’t ‘click’ for me, but I didn’t know that it had such deep roots.”

“Racial discrimination is very sad.”

“I’m praying that the world can become a wonderful harmony, like the song ‘Ebony and Ivory.’”

“Racial discrimination is slowly becoming a problem in Japan, too, but I honestly didn’t think that it was such a serious problem in the U.S. today…I want society to change for the better and realize that we are all the same humans.”

“That really is true. I first learned about how deep the roots of racism are when I lived overseas for a short time.”

Some talked about the idea that “there is no racism in Japan”, which many Japanese believe, despite many reported incidences of discrimination among non-Japanese Asians as well as the black community and other foreign residents.

“I’m a Japanese person who was born and raised in Japan, but I have never believed that racism doesn’t exist in this country, even when I was in elementary school.”

“I’m Japanese and I was born and raised in Japan. I think it’s sad that Japan has unearthed a lot of racial discrimination recently and has become a country where it does ‘click.’”

“Ms Hikaru, the same kind of state-level oppression is occurring in Japan, too.”

“My husband is black. In Japan, if he puts his hand in his pockets because he’s cold, he gets stopped by police and they demand to know what he’s holding.”

Interestingly, a surprising number of netizens touted strange conspiracy theories and expressed opinions that align with the American far-right:

“I’m someone who can’t endorse Antifa. I won’t retweet or like this tweet. I’m sorry.”

“Ah, you’re talking about how it’s been shown to the world that the far-left terrorist group Antifa has been using racism as its shield to help it pervade the world? That will surely be carved into the first page.”

“You mean the war created by China, which is hiding behind the idea of racism.”

Many also criticized Utada for not mentioning the Chinese government’s imprisonment and oppression of Uighur and Tibetan people, or for ignoring that June 4 was the anniversary of the Tienanmen Square incident. They brought attention to other significant racial issues that also need to be protested, though perhaps they inadvertently diminished the significance of the Black Lives Matter movement by trying to take some of its light away.

Regardless, Utada’s tweets sparked difficult conversations that need to be had, and revealed that America isn’t the only place where racism and racial discrimination exists and has long been a serious problem. One can only hope that these conversations lead to action, wherever you are in the world.

Source: Twitter/@utadahikaru via Hachima Kiko

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

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© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

58 Comments
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She probably just opened a pandora's box in Japan with that kind of topic and is on a collision course with the old guard but still better than institutionalized racism nonetheless. But I really believe that unless the entire global population intermixes through several generations and becomes an indistinguishable uniformed race, racial discrimination will still exist and even then, man would still find ways to discriminate against one another.

4 ( +14 / -10 )

The self denial is incredible here. Racism no problem in Japan ?

Do you want to ask the Chinese, Koreans, Nigerians etc who live here ?

I am Kaukasian , well off, but to rent a House KEN asked me to pay a deposit which was the equivalent of 23 years rent. I wanted a 2 year contract. When asked if they asked this also from Japanese people , the answer was “ no, it is only for foreigners. “

that despite I could show my monthly revenue being 6 times the rental and I was paying more at a current property for over 2 years.

of course they don’t do that to major multinationals and their staff.

complaining to government anti racism desks or consumer “ protection” offices is useless. They only say these are “ misunderstandings “ and communication problems

35 ( +44 / -9 )

“I’m someone who can’t endorse Antifa. I won’t retweet or like this tweet. I’m sorry.”

Yup!

-17 ( +8 / -25 )

Attention seeking at its finest. Taking advantage of these horrible events by talking to people who have no concept of racism and deny its existence.

Well she’s got to do something between albums I suppose

-17 ( +13 / -30 )

Actually Vince Black, Utada Hikaru was born and raised in New York, and she is very aware of social problem in America. What's wrong with her showing a little support?

16 ( +30 / -14 )

1.During a job interview in Tokyo I was asked to pretend to be from a certain European country or the US to maintain the companies image for a certain clientele if i were to be offered a Job. If I agreed to that then the Job was mine. I just walked out of that small interview cubicle disgusted.

2.As someone has already mentioned above getting a house in Japan is gruesome process. I searched for at least 20 apartments on the HOMES website, identified the potential houses/ rooms i was interested in, made my trip to the fudosan, i showed them the apartments i was interested in, 11 of them they told me directly they do not accept foreigners, and the remaining 9 they will make phones calls to the owners, and get back to me the next day with the answer, next day they called me all 9 said 外国人だめです。My dream of staying in a nice clean apartment of my choice was gone.

The legendary Empty train seat is still a reality

What about the Black people image in Japan, do you still struggle to find your dream date here lol?
20 ( +28 / -8 )

People should stop calling 'America'....

To be precise, the article is about racial discrimination in the U.S.A., not 'America'. The mistake starts there.

-12 ( +7 / -19 )

Is this the same Utada Hikaru who, despite owning a home in New York, complained that foreigners were buying apartments in Japan? And when asked about her racist hypocrisy, went all silent?

About racism, let's start at home, shall we?

24 ( +33 / -9 )

But when singer Hikaru Utada weighed in on the issue, she helped to spark a much-needed conversation among Japanese netizens

No she didn't. There are many, many Japanese people discussing exactly such topics on Twitter and other social media sites. There are many non-Japanese residents of Japan discussing racism in Japan and around the world on the internet too, in a variety of languages.

This is clearly a PR article created by her management/agency.

Interestingly, a surprising number of netizens touted strange conspiracy theories and expressed opinions that align with the American far-right

Comedy gold. They're called nettoyo. There's a huge number of them. Surprising? Maybe only to people who have never read anything on Japanese SNS. You'd have to be brain-meltingly naive to be surprised there are alt-right nationalists and racists among Japanese "netizens".

19 ( +31 / -12 )

I want to see her chime in on the problem in Japan as I feel Japan is more racist than any country I have ever been. I have been told on the phone by real estate agents that a certain owner doesn't rent to blacks or to Filipinos or to Chinese and it was not isolated. I have been told I couldn't go to so-and-so place because I was not Japanese. It is widespread and entrenched. If the real estate bubble had not burst, it would be even worse now. A dead gaijin at the hands of police, or any Japanese for that matter, will not garner any real news coverage. The difference is they don't lynch people here but they throw roadblocks from all directions and the TV shows and news programs go right past it without reporting on any issues. In the U.S., people have been working on the problems for decades but in Japan, according to most Japanese, there is no problem: Avoid negative publicity and keep my head in the sand. We are the greatest and we don't have the problems that countries like America have. That comedian on TV said so and I know it's true!

20 ( +28 / -8 )

@Samit Basu - she may have been born and educated there but it doesn't automatically mean she identifes as an American.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

I want to see her chime in on the problem in Japan as I feel Japan is more racist than any country I have ever been.

I’ve seen worse. Japan certainly isn’t good on this score but there are worse.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I hope people who don’t know much about black history and the current state of affairs, or who only know a little about them, will take this as an opportunity to learn more.”

Well said, but there are some people who just don't want to learn history, or context or the many reasons why racism is still with us.

I was warned about racism in Japan, many years ago. I didn't realize that a lot of it comes from right wing gaijin.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

Yup!

So, you're another one who isn't aware of the nearly hundred year history of anti-fascism?

What kind of world is it, where it's seen as wrong to stand up against racism/fascism?

-5 ( +9 / -14 )

I feel Japan is more racist than any country I have ever been.

Have you not spent much time in other countries? Japan has its racist problems, but compared to so many other countries it’s not even comparable.

-9 ( +11 / -20 )

”...Despite the increasing population of foreign nationals in the country, its people still doesn’t have much experience with racism..”

I am sorry “WHAT?!” Didnt you feel ashamed while writing this sentence?

14 ( +19 / -5 )

Please share with us

I’ve seen worse

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Utada Hikaru was born and raised in New York, and she is very aware of social problem in America

And most of her success/earnings is from Asia. People need to stop solely worrying about America's problems with similar problems happening right at their doorsteps. I don't know it seems like her and other celebs are more worried about jeopardizing their pocketbook.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

StrangerlandToday  10:05 am JST

I feel Japan is more racist than any country I have ever been.

Have you not spent much time in other countries? Japan has its racist problems, but compared to so many other countries it’s not even comparable.

I can only compare it to what I know firsthand. As I posted, I feel it is a more racist country than any I have ever BEEN. I have met many nice people here and have been treated fairly well on many occasions. That should be the norm not the exception. The problem is Japan tends to sweep everything negative under the rug and because the media is 100% controlled by one ethnic group they will remove any content which they feel will hurt the image of their ''fantastic" country. My first experiences dealing with the populace we're largely negative: A girlfriend who has parents that won't even let me use the bathroom in their home. Parking away from her home because she doesn't want the neighbors or her relatives to see that she is going out with a foreigner. Not being invited when your wife's parents take her out for dinner. Taxi drivers who won't stop for you. Hotels that won't let you stay there. "Friends" who never introduce you to their family and friends. Businesses that did not let you into their establishments even if you could speak the language. Co-workers who won't even say hello to you. People calling the police or leaving nasty notes in your mailbox about noise and calling the cops but those same cops ignoring you when you complained about bousozoku. People crossing the street when they see you coming but smiling in your wife's face when you are walking together. Mixed children getting harassed at school or being called the n-word. Women not wanting to enter the elevator or bolting out when you are there. People getting up and leaving a place when you enter or turning their backs to you. There is a LOT more.

If you love Japan and see no problem, good for you. My experiences have been a lot different. This is kind of what black and brown people are trying to get across in America.

6 ( +14 / -8 )

Comedy gold. They're called nettoyo. There's a huge number of them. Surprising? Maybe only to people who have never read anything on Japanese SNS. You'd have to be brain-meltingly naive to be surprised there are alt-right nationalists and racists among Japanese "netizens".

The LDP cronies employ them for a national web brigade similar to Chinese wumaos. Too bad, their skills are terrible at online dueling and trolling. Most of them are brain dead, and do not know what they are talking about. The English version of these people are likely hired Westerners who lack debate skills, trolling skills, roasting and other cyber skills. I have seen Russian brigades and Vietnamese AKs are much more professional. Russian brigades are constructively deceiving in their arguments, while Vietnamese AKs are meme-masters who use jokes and satires. Japan is still a light-year behind many nations at effectively employing a cyber-wafare.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

There's no systemic racism in America.

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

One more thing: Japan is very racist and biased toward some groups more than others but it is definitely biased against anyone not Japanese. I have heard horror stories from people from Australia, Canada, the U.S., Africa, Vietnam, Korea, Taiwan, black, white, you name it.

10 ( +18 / -8 )

@strangerland,

Re: Low racism in Japan...Because there's minimal immigration.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

One more thing, not to complain but to suggest. Utada's mother had a history of mental illness and eventually died from it. I know she said that she only wanted to think about her mother from the good times they shared. However, I wish Utada could use her power and influence to raise awareness of mental illness/suicide in Japan. She has experienced it first hand with her mother's passing. As much as there are people who do indeed fight for mental illness awareness, people seem to pay attention more when celebrities are involved.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I can only compare it to what I know firsthand. As I posted, I feel it is a more racist country than any I have ever BEEN.

I know. That's why I asked if you haven't spent much time in many places. My experiences definitely differ, one way I'm suspecting they differ is that I've had the experience many times of hearing that same claim made by foreigners about the country they are living in, in countries other than Japan.

People of the majority, who move to a country where they are the minority, often think that country is horrendously racist. And sometimes the country is. But just as often, it's sort of a confirmation bias. Japan is quite open to foreigners. We can open businesses (very easily), work in most industries, own property outright, get the protection of the police, and walk down the street almost never being verbally abused for being a foreigner. We can get business loans, and property loans. We can even take citizenship and vote. All things that are not true in many other countries in the world.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Japan is still a light-year behind many nations at effectively employing a cyber-wafare.

Yes, they're rubbish. As Toasted Heretic points out above:

I was warned about racism in Japan, many years ago. I didn't realize that a lot of it comes from right wing gaijin.

Naomi Osaka was being attacked by a notorious American white supremacist based in Japan. He's been banned from Twitter now, apparently.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

@Strangerland

We can open businesses (very easily), work in most industries, own property outright, get the protection of the police, and walk down the street almost never being verbally abused for being a foreigner. We can get business loans, and property loans. We can even take citizenship and vote. All things that are not true in many other countries in the world.

I'm curious who are these many other countries you are referring? I meant, I had an experience to live in EU, Middle East, comparably way better towards foreigners than JP and although I've no experience I'm sure that what you have listed, is also not problem in North American countries. So, exactly which countries you are referring that we can't do above.

We can open businesses (very easily), work in most industries

Get ready to be harassed by officials for inspections & checks more than other Japanese competitors.

own property outright

Get ready to not to be able to buy any property you want, or pay more than the market price

get the protection of the police

This example is a pure joke

walk down the street almost never being verbally abused for being a foreigner.

100% correct, but nobody easily verbally harassing any human-being in this country, it's not a way of showing aggression culturally. There are other passive aggressive ways to harass.

We can get business loans, and property loans.*

I'm sure that you are aware that, you are equally or easily be able to receive loans as a foreigner. Just ask any foreigner about their credit card application stories/memories.

We can even take citizenship and vote.

There is no almost legitimate country in the world that you can't take citizenship, then vote in 2020.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

I'd like to ask Hikaru why I was refused service at several barbershops in Japan.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

@Strangerland - Our definitions of 'much time' may differ. I have been to about 40 other countries and spent one or two days in some and upwards of a week or two in others but what I feel is a telltale sign is the warmth, or lack of it, you feel upon arrival or right after arrival. I have felt coldness and a bit of hostility/animosity from the natives in only two countries - Japan and South Korea. This was in stark contrast to the extreme warmth I felt in Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Brazil and a few others. Even now, after having been here over 3 decades, I feel hostility and coldness from a few of my Korean and Japanese co-workers and neighbors. It has ALWAYS been the case.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

I'm curious who are these many other countries you are referring? I meant, I had an experience to live in EU, Middle East, comparably way better towards foreigners than JP

Ok? I never claimed Japan is the best, I pointed out it's silly to think of it as the worst.

Try starting a business or buying a house in Thailand for example.

For that matter, try filing a police report against a Thai national in Thailand.

And that's just one. If you think Japan is the worst in the world, you're deluding yourself. If you think I said Japan is the best in the world, you have reading comprehension issues.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

Get ready to not to be able to buy any property you want, or pay more than the market price

I bought the property I wanted, and negotiated the price. It was neither above market price, nor did I ever get the impression the price was any different for myself as a foreigner.

get the protection of the police

------------

This example is a pure joke

I was punched in the face by a guy on the train one time. The police arrested him and charged him.

100% correct, but nobody easily verbally harassing any human-being in this country, it's not a way of showing aggression culturally. There are other passive aggressive ways to harass.

And in Korea, I was yelled at on the street for walking with my Japanese wife (whom they thought was Korean).

Again, Japan may not be the best, but it's not the worst.

I'm sure that you are aware that, you are equally or easily be able to receive loans as a foreigner. Just ask any foreigner about their credit card application stories/memories.

I've got multiple Japanese credit cards (though to be fair it took me six years to establish credit to get them), and I've received business loans three times.

There is no almost legitimate country in the world that you can't take citizenship, then vote in 2020.

Almost none, or none? Because the claim was that Japan is the most racist country.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

I have been to about 40 other countries and spent one or two days in some and upwards of a week or two in others but what I feel is a telltale sign is the warmth, or lack of it, you feel upon arrival or right after arrival. I have felt coldness and a bit of hostility/animosity from the natives in only two countries - Japan and South Korea. This was in stark contrast to the extreme warmth I felt in Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Brazil and a few others. Even now, after having been here over 3 decades, I feel hostility and coldness from a few of my Korean and Japanese co-workers and neighbors. It has ALWAYS been the case.

I have to ask, you've allegedly traveled to 40 countries around the world, all of them being far more warm, open, friendly, less racist, and welcoming to you, yet even after the supposedly racist experiences you suffered here to the point where you consider Japan the most racist place on Earth, you still chose Japan as the country you want to live in? For over 3 decades?

I'm not calling BS, but I cannot comprehend or understand your logic. Were you tricked into coming perhaps? Either way, judging by your actions, it appears that even you don't believe what you're saying otherwise I have to question your decision making. You even passed over Australia..? Wha?

6 ( +9 / -3 )

What, other than her celebrity status, qualifies her to weigh in?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

This was in stark contrast to the extreme warmth I felt in Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Brazil and a few others

Are you talking about warmth here or racism? Because if you're suggesting Australia is free of racism, I have to say that you have never been to Australia lol.

If you are talking about "warmth", does not meeting your personal subjective perception of warmth equal racism? If so, there's not much help for you and I would suggest expressing your dissatisfaction with your feet and try somewhere new? We only live once, why would you spend the only chance at life in misery and bitterness in a country you consider the most racist on Earth?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

What, other than her celebrity status, qualifies her to weigh in?

Being human with an opinion maybe?

If that doesn't qualify someone, then what qualifies any of the posters on this site, yourself included, to weigh in on anything?

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Or to be more technical, the qualification that enables one to comment on this matter, in this case was the knowledge of how to log into the Twitter account she posted from.

Same as any Twitter poster.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@Asinine - you can't always just pack up and leave and run away from negative things. No place is a paradise. Your question is what people seem to say the most. I NEVER said I was dying here or that this place was the absolute worst. I was pointing out MY experiences and MY opinions as a rebuttal to the people who swear that Japan is the greatest thing ever. Also, I did not come here willingly. I was transferred against my will and realized I had to make the best of it, but staying was of my own accord after being here for a few years. Let me ask you a relevant question: Why do some people stay in a loveless marriage? Why do many people stay working at a job they hate? Maybe there are other benefits or points that help keep them there. Hopefully you can see my point.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

My Japanese friend showed her mother my picture, and the Mom's immediate response was Kowai 怖い。Some might want to try and explain the nuances, and background to this common comment to foreigners, but its frequency is a cause of concern. ( in this picture i was even wearing a nice tuxedo, and with a broad smile)

2 ( +6 / -4 )

@Mocheake: Yeah I understand your point, I wasn't suggesting that you leave, I was questioning why one would move to a country they consider to be the worst and most racist in the first place? If it was a forced transfer then that's unfortunate, but surely management would have taken into consideration your repulsion of the country they are forcing you to move to? Maybe your company is the problem forcing their employees into such conditions without respect to their personal views?

Although, if it was 3 decades ago like you said it would have been a different age. Around that same time let's look around the world. We have Apartheid South Africa where few would be brave enough to argue that their system wasn't the most racist on Earth. We have the Rwandan Genocide where 1 million of a minority group were hacked to pieces. We have the Rodney King riots in LA. I'm sorry, but not in a million years would I consider the Japan of then even in the same order of magnitude as the stand out racist examples of that time period. And the Japan of today is many times less racist than it was in the 80s and 90s..

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@Asinine: Amen! Work needs to be done on ALL sides, mine included, and I struggle with myself every day.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

“My husband is black. In Japan, if he puts his hand in his pockets because he’s cold, he gets stopped by police and they demand to know what he’s holding.”

He should tell them he's holding his junk. :D

Non-Japanese also routinely get stopped on their bikes to make sure they're not stolen.

Racial profiling, plain and simple.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Miss Hikaru, pls deal with racism in japan first. I have live here for 31 years, bad japanese esp males have complex , ego and racisim and are big big back-stabbers and bullies. Lets work togather. I am facing 3 males now in my office.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

the thing about racism in Japan is that it,s actually worse because it has to do with ignorance and the superiority / inferiority complexes that Japanese people have... some people think Japan it,s not so bad but that,s because people “need” to be polite in this country... ... what Japanese people think and how they act are two completely different things... Japan and Japanese we,re always closed and isolated from the rest of the world, and the truth is that Japan was the second biggest economy for a long time, and we all know how safe and clean it is - Japanese people did that, so ( generally speaking ) when they realize that some foreigner works and lives in Japan they always have that feeling ( pretty difficult to fight that ), that,s why their feelings towards tourists and foreign residents can be completely different... racism in Japan and the US is different, and in Japan things are more complicated as you can imagine... one simple example: in the US you can become an American citizen and be considered American, in Japan you will never be considered Japanese ( it doesn,t matter where you come from )...

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@rcch,

yes that what you posted is correct; its a more difficult and oppressing kind of racism

When I hear Japanese start to lecture about the US, I feel this cringe, like they are trying

to explain/connect to something they really know nothing about. Telling stories about "Los" (its

what they call Los Angeles) or other places in the US. The US is not disneyland.

Its so rich coming from her, after having enjoyed her life there. The racism in Japan is indeed

crushing, but they will never mention this very obvious fact, instead lets critique and explain

the US.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@TheLongTermer

yes, that,s some of the examples of the ignorance i was talking about, not the one related to racism itself ( which of course it,s the worst ) but i mean ignorance ignorance...

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

It also really depends on how well you speak Japanese. Being able to understand the culture and speaking the language will go a long way.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

robert maes: The self denial is incredible here. Racism no problem in Japan ? 

Do you want to ask the Chinese, Koreans, Nigerians etc who live here ?

You don't get it do you? It's "black lives matter".

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Japan is more welcoming, more polite, you won't get attacked physically, people won't spit on you or destroy your property. I've seen Asians end up in the hospital with brutal attacks both in America and Europe. That's the difference between Japan and other countries. You won't get shot either, won't find videos of police laying on your neck for 9 minutes. Facts do matter.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Please share with us

I’ve seen worse

China. They could teach the Japanese a masterclass in racism.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@rcch: the thing about racism in Japan is that it,s actually worse because it has to do with ignorance and the superiority / inferiority complexes that Japanese people have...

If you consider what's going on in America now, the ignorance is much the same. The country has evolved into a race obsessed society based in the idea of inferiority/superiority focused on historic wrongs. Concepts like White Privilege and Black Lives Matter are rooted in the idea of white moral inferiority and black moral superiority. Totally devoid of the traditional civil rights notion that people should be judged based on the content of their character, this new racial hierarchy rests upon shaming and cancelling those resistant to the prevailing racial orthodoxy. In a normal functioning society, no individual would be thought superior or inferior due the actions of people of the same race of previous generations. The son is not guilty of the sins of the father. Yet this is the entire concept of modern race relations in America today. It is to the point that there are white people kneeling before blacks to atone for their ancestors sins and to repent of their own innate sin. There are white people washing the feet of black activists. It is perverse that after all that humanity has been through we refuse to learn from past mistakes and move forward as one humanity.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

One more thing: Japan is very racist and biased toward some groups more than others but it is definitely biased against anyone not Japanese. I have heard horror stories from people from Australia, Canada, the U.S., Africa, Vietnam, Korea, Taiwan, black, white, you name it.

The Ainu are Japanese and they were in Japan before the present day Japanese stole it from them and now discriminate against. In the USA...the Native American (some still live on reservations)...known as the First Nation....had the same fate that historians regard as genocide. Selective history has no value at all and there is plenty of that involved after the police responded to a trader concerned about being passed a dud note to purchase something and that the suspect (known to the police) resisted arrest. The police used the prescribed method for a suspect resisting arrest. The suspect had a variety of conditions that might have been best looked after at home recuperating. Eventually 'we' will get to hear / see (such a strange notion) the 'evidence' and the fair trial which articles in the USA Constitution promises (even if 'obviously' guilty) will commence instead of the 'worldwide' kangaroo court presently played out which virtually makes a fair trial impossible. If I was the defense council I would be quietly confident of a 'not guilty' verdict.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Hoppy

It also really depends on how well you speak Japanese. Being able to understand the culture and speaking the language will go a long way.

Continue, Defending the indefensible.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Continue, Defending the indefensible.

He’s right though, as anyone who speaks Japanese at an advanced level can tell you.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I love how non-blacks always try to educate people on what it is to be black, what they feel or the black experience.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

There are t any specific anti-discrimination laws based on race in Japan as the Japanese see no need for them.

Hikaru’s heart might be in the right place but TPTB appear to be imperviousness to any concrete action to remedy the situation.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Even if recognized as a publicity move by her managers, I admire any "celebrity" that speaks out on social issues, whether the majority opinion agrees with them or not. Better to expand the discussion away from politicians, who always have their own interests first. What needs more media coverage are opinions of life in Japan from the many sub-groups of residents that live with discrimination.

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Who says there is no racism in Japan? It exists in all its forms. As a student in Tokyo in 1993, I was turned away from a restaurant when I wanted to have lunch. I am black African, and I couldn't get an apartment to rent then. Not much has changed then. Even in 2020, you often hear " gaikokujin dame" when it comes to renting a place to lay your head. It was/is hard getting hired by any company even if you were the smartest guy at the interview. Some companies would tell you to pretend to be an American and would give you an Anglicized name in the office in order to maintain what they called a certain level of 'civility' in the face of a prestigious client. This feeds discrimination right on the job and you are given little or no chance of advancement on the job. The ride on the train when Japanese people shun seats occupied by foreigners, the usual cry of "kokujin was kowaii", the racial profiling of the Japanese police particularly in the entertainment districts of Roppongi, Kabukicho, Ginza, Susukino etc and the constant calling of the police by your neighbours on you for no reason etc All these and many more are evidence of racism in Japan. It is directed at all foreigners and I must say other Asians perhaps experience it more.

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On a lighter note, At first glance, I thought she had some really hairy under arms, LOL.

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