lifestyle

A mother leaves Japan so that her teen son can stay

79 Comments
By Minami Funakoshi and Thomas Wilson

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2016.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


79 Comments
Login to comment

I have no sympathy at all for her, but for her son I do. She knew for years that what she was doing (overstaying) was illegal.

5 ( +19 / -14 )

I have no sympathy at all for her, but for her son I do. She knew for years that what she was doing (overstaying) was illegal.

Making the children pay for the sins of their parents is never morally right!

11 ( +22 / -11 )

Sad and tragic, but I agree with sensei258 You cannot go somewhere illegally, then have Kidz, and hope they make you legal. Two wrongs don't make a right, and illegals also make a mockery of those who do go the right path to their long term visa.

13 ( +18 / -5 )

I'm glad they've introduced this option. They used to automatically deport the kids/teens whether they knew anything about their parent's country or not.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

They seriously need to make some type of path to citizenship here or relax immigration. Can they not just renounce there past country and become a J-citizen or take a test?

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Making the children pay for the sins of their parents is never morally right!

Something the mother should have considered from the start.

4 ( +16 / -12 )

“increasingly adapted to Japanese society.”

That is the ignorance that prevails in Japan.The kid was born and raised here.There was no adapting.He is Japanese.Or half anyway.Lol.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

You got that right cracaphat. I'm Japanese, born here, but have western roots as well and to this day people will have my Japanese ID in front of them and treat me like I just arrived. To be Japanese is to have a Japanese face.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

There was no adapting.He is Japanese.Or half anyway.Lol.

Did you read the article?

Lonsan’s departure left Utinan, who was born and raised in Japan and has never been to Thailand, without any family. Utinan’s parents - his father is also Thai - separated when he was young.

No nice to call him "half", even in jest, he is 100% not "half" of anything!

1 ( +7 / -6 )

It's interesting that biblical/classical ideas such as parents' sins/curses being passed onto children and grandchildren still hold some truth in 2016.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

i totally agree entering a country with purposeful documents and following the rules. For the ones that don't, the ones that do pay the price, destroys the image of their own country and we the honest ones have to pay the price all the time. It's unfair that they only think of themselves.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

So, the Abe regime is spending hundreds of millions of tax dollars every years on PR to boost Japan's image around the world but stories like these show the authorities to be mean-spirited and heartless, totally lacking in human empathy.

If the Abe regime was serious about improving its image it would create laws that deal with families like the one in the story in a humane way.

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

Sad story indeed. While I believe there should be a penalty paid for breaking immigration laws, not all penalties should equate to deportation. There are other avenues that can help contribute to Japanese society and generate money at the same time. Obviously there is no blanket ruling that works, each case needs to be researched and determined what kind of person they are, if they have been contributing to japan or not.

It's sad to see that many people don't have a heart simply because a law was broken and someone made a bad choice. Separating family is a sad thing in any case!

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I agree with some of the others above.

Of course I feel a bit of sadness, but that is the fault of the parents who skirted the laws by overstaying their visas and taking a chance by doing so. They in effect broke the law to stay, and now their children are facing the consequences.

Some can use this as usual to paint the Japanese as 'evil' and 'unfeeling' xenophobes, but rules are rules, and every country has a right to enforce their immigration rules. We have similar problems in the U.S. where parents came illegally, and now they're having issues because they need to be deported.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Wow, this is cold.

The woman lived here for 20 years, and raised her kid here. The kid may be ethnically Thai, but having never been there, he's probably as Japanese as any other kid.

Who was she hurting? Was she doing something illegal other than overstaying? Was she causing troubles?

I don't see any benefit to society of deporting her (unless she was involved in other illicit activities), and it brings down the moral fabric of the society to kick her out.

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

So, the story is this: she came to Japan and overstayed her visa illegally. After 5 plus years of staying illegally, she decided to get pregnant and have a child. Now, finally, the authorities have caught up with her.

Sorry, I don't see any place for sympathy here. There is no evidence she was fleeing any persecution or danger when she came here. Pure opportunism only. What happens to her son is on her. In retrospect, it would have been better for her to have been deported much earlier. Also, her son has the option or returning to Thailand with her.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Japan Today is plagued with "first worlders". How can someone born in Sweden, Canada, Switzerland understand the feelings of someone born in a dirty corrupt country that just wants to work and live in peace? Immigration, Globalism, Multiculturalism, all these words were tainted by the worst immigrants that wanted nothing but to to invade, conquer and pile in the first place. Disgusted by some comments that treat good PEOPLE like little pets "oh, but you don't belong here, screw your 20 years of struggling to raise your family, go away illegal". Again, you will NEVER understand the feelings of these good people. Please go do a volunteer work or something and wake up to the real world.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

And this will happen in America under Trump too, and it is good.

-11 ( +7 / -18 )

There are any americans in this site? Are you fed up with your mexicans? If so, why? Is it because of the illegal that paints your house and makes your roads? Or is it because of the criminals? Do the guy working in the convenience store bothers you? Guess what, the only thing the two have in common is the way they came. The honest worker fled to your country EXACTLY because of the criminal that also manages to get into your country. Is it ok for you to judge all them as the same thing? 20 years working day after day in jobs no other people want to do X rich, armed drug dealer. Don't come thinking everyone is just an economic migrant that wants good and easy life.

It costed me time, money, years and tons of paperwork to simply come and stay in Japan. But I wouldn't call myself human if I said this mother is an "illegal" hence she has to get the boot. What crying babies you are.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

i wonder how they were caught in the first place since the kid had been attending school in japan his entire life. furthermore, how could they deport him since he's japanese? am i missing something?

but those of you who are advocating that the japanese government, let alone any sovereign country, make special provisions for people who overstay their visas, are only encouraging rampant illegal immigration. what would stop hundreds of thousands of people from pouring into the country seeking jobs? i'm as liberal as can be, but i don't see this as a win-win situation for a country like japan, who has no support system to help the influx of foreigners.

yes, we need immigraiton in japan but not like what that woman did.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Government spending through the roof, earthquakes, fraud by major companies and everyone here is happy that a mother and a son are being separated? Shame on you. Image growing up and at age 16 and the government decides to send your mother back (regardless the reason). 1 person. What difference does it make. I have my thoughts about immigration but this is a totally different case, at least they should've gotten the chance to proof they had properly immigrated instead of just breaking up a family. Bah, im disgusted about some of the comments.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

I don't see any place for sympathy here. There is no evidence she was fleeing any persecution or danger when she came here. Pure opportunism only.

What's wrong with opportunism? Do you not take opportunities to improve your life and/or that of your children? Or were you fortunate enough to be born into a quality life that needs no improvement, and if so, how can you possibly understand the plight of someone who wasn't?

2 ( +8 / -6 )

And this will happen in America under Trump too, and it is good.

There is a huge difference between "is happening" and "might". Just because people say things on the campaign trail does not mean they will become reality. Talk is cheap, and that something Trump is truly full of.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Japan Today is plagued with "first worlders". How can someone born in Sweden, Canada, Switzerland understand the feelings of someone born in a dirty corrupt country that just wants to work and live in peace?

There is an old saying which goes "that was then, this is now." I doubt any of the "first worlders" you mention here on JT have ever invaded or conquered another country. You must remember that Europe and many other "first world" countries were also dirty and corrupt in earlier times, and through hard work carried out over many generations were these countries lifted up to the level of peace and prosperity they enjoy today.

Many developing countries are inherently wealthy, with vast resources, great climates, and other natural benefits which your average Scandinavian can only dream about. If the developing world is dirty and corrupt, it is up to the people who live there to clean it up. Instead, they leave for other countries, were some assimilate, but many don't, and create "dirty and corrupt" subcultures identical to those they left behind.

If one wants peace and prosperity in one's country, one must work to make these things happen. The peace and prosperity Europe, and by extension, other developed countries enjoy, came at a heavy cost in blood. Tyrants and despots were overthrown, and the people raised themselves from being serfs and subjects to full citizens. if one doesn't want to go to all the trouble to make one's country a place worth living in, then one must bear the consequences.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

The question to ask is why the mom never applied in 20 years to regularize her status? In most cases Illegals cost money to local legal residents in one way or another. That's no fair either, but forgotten all too often.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

A bit bloody stupid having the mother leave as the boy enters high school. The principle of letting the child stay if the parent leaves is one thing (anyway not my favourite), but the timing seems way off.

Couldn't they wait until the boy graduates from high school, if they really want to follow this principle?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

painful ! can people in Japan understand that Japan need these new bloods

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

In most cases Illegals cost money to local legal residents in one way or another.

could you tell me exactly how???? unless they get heartlessly deported, they are contributing to the society. As Strangerland also said, I don't see any benefit to society of deporting her, unless she was involved in illicit activities. But that's ok. This is just a picture, just an article, words. You never met an illegal, never went to meet their families. Never experienced all the tears and human suffering because the lack of a single piece of paper. Everyday is almost like living with a terminal illness because for many of them, deportation equals death. But I guess you wouldn't understand that either... I sacrificed my visa last year (just to get it again, through court and later some negotiation with the immigration) and spent 1 year in the limbo simply for helping too many of the human beings the officials wanted to tear apart from their families. Now, who do you think you are to judge who stays and whos out?

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Well, somebody has to make these judgements, painful as they are.

There is no change in the law that would work here without inviting future abuse via "anchor babies." A country is obligated to control its borders.

I think the only option is to review each case, and allow exceptions where warranted. The mother broke the law (with good intentions), but now the family suffers. At least this boy is 16 and has a guardian here. He will be an adult soon enough. Other situations are even worse.

Whatever the solution is, it will be difficult to be compassionate without inadvertently inviting a torrent of abuse by future illegal immigrants.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

20 years in Japan and not speaking Japanese ? It's a lack of integration and what kind of job she was doing? We have here only few information. The Japanese judge take such decision by taking in account that son is now part of the country as he doesn't know any other one.

Basically we all agree by saying she was wrong to follow so many years in such situation as obviously, one day she has to be caught. Sure it's really sad for the son and it reminds me the very good movie "Crossing Over" and the family completely broken.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

I'd be curious to know what employment she has done over the past 20years. If she has been paying taxes, then kicking her out seems very unfair and hypocritical.

There is a thing called "amnesty", and Japan could offer such things to illegals who have been in this country and supported this country in various forms.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Being swayed by individual cases is one thing governments will not accept. If you accept one you'll risking the possibility of opening the flood gate where all refugees comes rushing in. The child was given more then a fair chance and that is enough.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Oh! Japan clear violated the human rights.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Too many comments here make no sense. You break the law you pay.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

I'd be curious to know what employment she has done over the past 20years. If she has been paying taxes, then kicking her out seems very unfair and hypocritical.

Legally she can not work and has to rely on others to survive here. People who are under this status are in limbo and are subject to the whims of the state.

And if you actually read the article you would have the answer to your question.

Utinan now lives with a Japanese man who has been supporting the family. He is waiting to hear whether the Japanese authorities will live up to their side of the deal. The Tokyo High Court is expected to rule on his case next month.

On a separate note there is more to this story than being reported here, the boy is 16, Mom has been here over 2 decades, and she was married to a Thai man, but they separated when he was little......where the hell is Dad here?

Is he still in Japan? Did he go back to Thailand? Why was she here in the first place, married and then they both over-stayed their visas? Looking for a better life, fine, but what's the real story?

There are some huge gaps in the history here, and the story, pulls on the heart strings, and begs sympathy. I dont believe her son should have to pay for his mother's errors in judgement, and the government should be showing leniency to keep families together.

Family courts here go to great lengths to keep children with their parents during divorce yet they are willing to allow this boy, soon to be young man, the opportunity to stay, alone, without family, in the care of someone who is not even a relative?

Bassakwards if you ask me.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Japan is not like the US and certain EU (and former EU) countries. Illegal immigration is never a good thing. Regardless of whatever reasons.

It's not the children's fault that their parent's made certain choices that break another countries laws.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

But, in their ruling, the judges laid out a path for Utinan to stay in Japan - if his mother left the country.

Substandard reporting by Reuters. They reports as if the mother had a choice of staying in Japan. The court ruled that the mother had to be deported and that the son had a choice of staying in or leaving Japan.

This is what happens when news writers parrot what an advocate group feeds them.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

They seriously need to make some type of path to citizenship here or relax immigration.

Naturalization requirements are in fact relaxed for people of any nationality born in Japan. He is too young to apply on his own. If he stays in Japan, he should be able to apply for citizenship when he comes of age.

It's interesting that biblical/classical ideas such as parents' sins/curses being passed onto children and grandchildren still hold some truth in 2016.

Grandfathers as well if you are Abe Shinzo.

So, the Abe regime is spending hundreds of millions of tax dollars every years on PR to boost Japan's image around the world but stories like these show the authorities to be mean-spirited and heartless, totally lacking in human empathy. If the Abe regime was serious about improving its image it would create laws that deal with families like the one in the story in a humane way.

I suspect whaling does far to damage Japan’s reputation than stories like this. Americans in particular can read about similar cases almost on a daily basis.

i wonder how they were caught in the first place since the kid had been attending school in japan his entire life. furthermore, how could they deport him since he's japanese? am i missing something?

Just being born in Japan does not make you a Japanese citizen. One of your parents must have Japanese nationality.

And this will happen in America under Trump too, and it is good. There is a huge difference between "is happening" and "might". Just because people say things on the campaign trail does not mean they will become reality. Talk is cheap, and that something Trump is truly full of.

It won’t start with Trump because this kind of thing has been going on for years in the US. Just last week it was reported that a Korean who was adopted as a child and who has lived in the US for 38 years was being deported because his adoptive parents had not done the paperwork to get him naturalized.

This Washington Post article documents the fact that the US regularly deports the illegal immigrant parents of children born in the US.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2015/08/20/the-myth-of-the-anchor-baby-deportation-defense/

While I think the Japanese government decision was harsh, it is not out of line with what the US has been doing.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

@MsDelicious. Too many comments here make no sense. You break the law you pay.

Not necessarily. Laws are designed to reflect the values of society and can be changed when necessary. The comments show a divided opinion on this issue so it is correct to question the actions many may think as "outdated" laws.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Why didn't the mother apply for Japanese citizenship? Surely if someone is planning to spend their life in a country and never go back to their home country then wouldn't it make sense to apply for a passport and become a legal citizen of that country?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

could you tell me exactly how???? unless they get heartlessly deported, they are contributing to the society.

Generally speaking, people who don't have a high-school diploma, or equivalent level of education draw more in benefits from the economy than they contribute to it. This is the main argument used by educators and education associations to keep young people in school. Illegal immigrants are usually the less or least educated people in their societies, and a large percentage of them are illiterate. Their lack of education makes them of little value in their own countries, where unskilled labor pays very poorly.

If you look at America, and the illegal aliens living there (and that is their legal definition, they are not immigrants, they are not "undocumented"), when you subtract the costs of healthcare, education, social programs, and the cost of incarcerating those who break the law, you end up with a balance which is deeply negative.

Some illegal aliens with more skills who work hard do indeed contribute more than what they collect, but by-and-large, these are the exception, and not the rule.

In the past, illegal immigration in America has been overlooked by both political parties. The republicans tolerate illegal immigration because it provides cheap labor, democrats tolerate illegal immigration because it enlarges the permanent underclass which always votes democrat. The only ones who do not tolerate illegal immigration are the working classes, who have seen job opportunities reduced, and wages pushed down.

There is no job which Americans are unwilling to do, provided that these jobs pay enough. In the days before tens of millions of illegal aliens entered the economy, these jobs did pay more. In 2016, entry level construction work in America pays less than it did in 1986. My friends in high school who got construction jobs in the summer earned enough to buy a nice car, but these jobs now pay no better than the fast food jobs which students are now stuck doing, because other entry level jobs don't pay enough.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I have no sympathy at all for he

You were obviously never in her situation, so how could you relate anyway? Its easy to judge, and its easy to kick people out, as long as its not your mother, isnt it?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

"Rules are rules"..."she knew what she was doing" etc etc

What childish, self-righteous nonsense and bigotry.

Is over-staying a visa really such a bad crime that deportation and the upending of someone's life for the past 20 years is the only option?

How about a more grown up response from the authorities?

Mrs Won, you have overstayed your visa, a criminal offense in Japan. But given that you have established a family here, been a law-abiding citizen and generally contributed to the economy and society of Japan, we are prepared to consider favourably an application to for permanent residence here in Japan. However, you must appreciate that a fine or other punishment may be imposed with regards the offence in question.

There - not too difficult and Japan looks sane and understanding rather that a country of vindictive jobsworths.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Ah_soNOV. 25, 2016 - 05:50PM JST

Mrs Won, you have overstayed your visa, a criminal offense in Japan.

But given that you have established a family here,

She entered Japan with the intention to overstay her visa with the understanding that she is not allowed to establish a family here

been a law-abiding citizen

She has been violating the law since the moment she entered Japan.

and generally contributed to the economy and society of Japan,

Since an illegal foreigner is not allowed to work in Japan, she has not contributed anything to Japan.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

She entered Japan with the intention to overstay her visa with the understanding that she is not allowed to establish a family here

And you know this how? There is nothing in the article that stated her intent, and she came here married, and her son was born 4 years later.

Never good to assume something when there is an absence of information.

She has been violating the law since the moment she entered Japan.

Really? So you are making an illogical assumption here as well. What crime did she commit when she entered the country? Again no information to support your assumption.

You leap to assumptions because of the following, but nothing stated says that she is in the same or was in the same situation. She did not have a family when she overstayed her visa and you have no idea if she had it renewed or not, or anything for that matter.

Many of the parents, from countries such as Peru, Bolivia and Iran, entered Japan on tourist visas in the 1990s and stayed on, hoping to build a better life for them and their children.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

There is nothing in the article that mentions whether she entered illegally or overstayed her visa.

It is entirely possible to enter Japan legally and end up on "provisional release" status after entry, at which point it can become a very long and drawn out legal battle - 20 years in some cases.

Those of you who think a family that has lived in a nation for 20 years, including children born here, should be ripped apart and have the parents deported, I think you are mentally ill and lack basic human compassion. I'd guess you have never suffered any hardship beyond trivialities such as how to spend the excess university fund money from your parents.

Some people have real problems like dealing with homelessness, criminal gangs looking for them, political problems, etc.

The woman's been here 20 years, if she can speak read and write Japanese, has Japanese children and a husband who is Japanese, she should have been granted citizenship automatically anyway, and in this case, she should have been granted amnesty.

This article, and the other similar case last week of a Sikh family under similar circumstances, proves that Japan is still nothing but a wannabe nation that has made no progress in civil rights since the day WW2 ended.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

A shocking amount of liberals will tell you that illegal immigrants should be given amnesty and that we should turn them into citizens, give them full benefits, and support their families. This is a logic I do not understand at all. If I went somewhere illegally and worked and didn't pay taxes and got caught in the end, I wouldn't be whining that I should be given something that I am not entitled to.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It is not that tragic for a 16 year old high school kid to be seperated from mother. Many high schoolers go abroad to study or left alone from parents because of job transfer. No big deal.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

“After the mother is deported, if there is a guardian able to care for the child on behalf of the mother; if there is a network of support; if the child himself wishes to continue life in Japan even if he is apart from his mother; then there is room to reconsider whether to grant the child a special residence permit,” the ruling said.

The court ruled that the mother must be deported, adding that the child may stay if there is a guardian. Now, how could this be reported in a news article as,

But, in their ruling, the judges laid out a path for Utinan to stay in Japan - if his mother left the country.

Here is another spin.

In total, Reuters spoke to five other families who said they had received a direct, verbal offer of residency from immigration officers for the children if the parents left the country. But they turned down the offer, they said, preferring to continue their battle to stay in Japan rather than break up their families.

What does "to continue their battle to stay in Japan" actually mean? It means that they file petitions after petitions to delay their deportation. Every time they file a petition, judges and immigration officers must review it, costing millions of yen. The ruling is already there. They should respect the ruling rather than file meaningless petitions.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It is not that tragic for a 16 year old high school kid to be seperated from mother. Many high schoolers go abroad to study or left alone from parents because of job transfer. No big deal.

When I was 16 the last thing I wanted to be separated from my friends and loved ones. Not every teenager an independent soul. So for some it IS tragic.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Cold or not, the law is the law and must be obeyed. An illegal immigrant is an illegal immigrant. I feel for the kid, and even for the mother (she moved to Japan for a better life than she had in Thailand. Going back won't be easy, especially under these circumstances), but the law must take priority over emotion, otherwise precedence will be set for all illegals.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I have read that most cases of illegal immigration here in the USA are also of this general type, of people entering the country legally and then staying longer than legally permitted. Another reason why the idea of building walls along the borders is so stupid.

The question of how to treat the children of illegal immigrants, who only know their new country, is an agonizing one. It does not seem right to force someone to live in a country where they do not speak the language, and do not know the customs.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I haven't read the comments here before posting, but I can barely believe the inhumanity in this.

In their June 30 ruling, judges in the Tokyo District Court noted that Utinan was attending high school and had “increasingly adapted to Japanese society.

This alone is a damning indictment on the Japanese legal system and the attitude of Japanese to cases like this. The kid has only ever lived in Japan, he's Japanese! He hasn't had to 'adapt' to Japanese society, it's all he knows!

Furthermore, he's only 16, and they have decided to deport his legal guardian. How unbelievably irresponsible.

Shame Japan. Shame on you.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The woman's been here 20 years, if she can speak read and write Japanese, has Japanese children and a husband who is Japanese, she should have been granted citizenship automatically anyway, and in this case, she should have been granted amnesty.

Where in the heck have you read that she has a Japanese husband? Where as well have you come to the conclusion that her child, who is 16, and was born with having a Thai father as well, IS JAPANESE?

Damn people...read the article before blowing smoke outta your butts PLEASE!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

TamaramaNOV. 25, 2016 - 09:19PM JST

he's Japanese!

No, he is not Japanese. As is the case in most countries in the world, just being born in Japan does not make the baby a Japanese citizen.

He hasn't had to 'adapt' to Japanese society, it's all he knows!

The parent should have left Japan much earlier so that the baby could adapt to his country of citizenship rather than play with legal system to prolong her illegal stay in Japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"uh buh, bye" .... Give me a break. This is not the worse thing from JPN government. 50's and 60's JPN GOV refused to give citizenship to half-japanese kids. Refused to give foreigners national health insurance back in the day.

and please I don't need to hear about "pure bloods" that grew up overseas, and feel like outcasts....or even hear about the "sad sad" story about "hafu", on how Japanese don't accept them....blah blah...

When I see these sad p*ks outside Diet building...then maybe I will give two shi

Yeah, I got my PR via "bloodline" law...and I give crap to the national government everyday. Seen EVERY level of Japanese society...

every country in world has a government only created to oppress the people..

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

TumilberNOV. 25, 2016 - 09:56PM JST

"uh buh, bye" .... Give me a break. This is not the worse thing from JPN government. 50's and 60's JPN GOV refused to give citizenship to half-japanese kids.

Not true.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@CH3CHO - okay you "believe" it's "not true". Too bad it's true. At the time JPN government had no law to contend with such cases...Oh yeah it was untrue, that Yokohama was the only place foreigners were allowed without express permission of the central government.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

TumilberNOV. 25, 2016 - 10:22PM JST

Until 1985, Japanese citizenship is given to a child of a father who is a Japanese national. What you say about "pure blood" is incorrect. It was sexist, not racist. In 1985 when the law was changed, Japanese citizenship is given to children of a Japanese mother upon application.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No, he is not Japanese. As is the case in most countries in the world, just being born in Japan does not make the baby a Japanese citizen.

I'm not talking about where he has born, I am talking about the subsequent 16 years of his life, spent only in Japan. He's most definitely Japanese.

The parent should have left Japan much earlier so that the baby could adapt to his country of citizenship rather than play with legal system to prolong her illegal stay in Japan.

Forget hypotheticals. Just stick with the real series of events. Which in this case appear rather deplorable.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It's insane. Disgusting. Tell me it"s a hoax !!!!!! Separating a minor from parents just for the sake of punishing a victimless and subjective crime. Remind me, the bosses of Tepco have been deported or their kids were taken away from them ?

Did you read the article?

A boy that has never been to gaikoku, had no family there (before Mum deportation), born and raised in Japan. He is Japanese, not half, 100% , Made in Japan. Nihonsei.

This is not the worse thing from JPN government. 50's and 60's JPN GOV refused to give citizenship to half-japanese kids.

That was bad. But this is worse as these kids were getting zainichi status and were not separated from their mothers before adult age. Japan heartlessness is reaching a new low.

Those of you who think a family that has lived in a nation for 20 years, including children born here, should be ripped apart and have the parents deported, I think you are mentally ill and lack basic human compassion.

Exactly.

This is a logic I do not understand at all.

It's the racial/national privilege I don't get. I have been on both sides of the fence and I could see the huge gap.

If I went somewhere illegally and worked and didn't pay taxes

First, nearly all illegal stayers work and pay taxes. Then Japanese cops and tax officers are very busy and 99% of their "clients" are Japanese. Take a case like Donald Trump (I take him as he is famous and extreme, but many citizens in all countries do the same) : he didn't pay his tax, he did tons of things illegally... but even if caught, well, whenever he is caught, no court will consider banning him from the country, taking away his kids, extending punishment to his kids, destroying their lives. So why the double standard ? If you are not a dictature but a State of rights, give the overstayers the same types of penalties you give to citizen criminals.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So for some it IS tragic.

Not for this boy. That's why he chose to stay in Japan rather than live with his mother in Thailand.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

TamaramaNOV. 25, 2016 - 10:54PM JST

She should have left Japan when her visa expired. She should have left Japan when she repeatedly received notice to leave Japan. It is all her fault.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Not much milk of human kindness in many of the posters above.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Of course there has to be an emotional appeal here. Usually it works. It works in the US. People bend over backward to see the humanity behind all of the illegal stuff people pull all the time.

And bless their hearts.

But you know. You get into trouble when your national policy is to just follow your heart and make exceptions here and there. Eventually someone is giving away someone else's job, or home, or tax money, or whatever, and resentment builds and then you get people marching in the streets. And then the demagogues get elected President.

Sending this woman out of the country is STATE VIOLENCE. But doing this regularly and often and fairly is best for everyone in the long run. Want to immigrate? Do it legally. Everyone knows the rules. And that makes it a fair game.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Stick with your argument, Thunderbird. I'm in your corner.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Eventually someone is giving away someone else's job, or home, or tax money, or whatever, and resentment builds

Keep in mind this IS Japan, the land of an aging society that needs young blood and people willing to work, pay their taxes and support the system.

There should not be, a blanket law that has no leeway, and only verbally offering this option leaves her son in limbo as well as immigration could go after him in time as well. No proof that immigration said anything about allowing him to stay.

Cases like these, should in my opinion, be decided on a case by case basis, particularly where families are involved.

Also if immigration has such a policy it should be on paper.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Hilarious the way all the economic refugees on here agree to damming the mother to a hell hole away from her son. Given the opportunity, I would marry the woman and sponsor her stay.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

In what country does the priority of a foreign national take precedence over naturalized and native citizens again? Law's exist for a reason. And once again, Japan is in no position to be an open door amnesty donating country for others. The economy is in bad shape, the society has lots of issues that need to be addressed, and the actual legislature running the country really needs work... but hey, lets ignore all that and just let a bunch of foreign nationals staying in Japan illegally add more weight to the problems the country already has!

"HOW CAN YOU TAKE CARE OF OTHERS, IF YOU CAN'T EVEN TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF"

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The economy is in bad shape because it refuses to accept immigration.

The population of this country has crashed and is continuing to crash. It is nearly impossible to be homeless if you have even a gram of effort in your body. You can get work EVERYWHERE in Japan because there are not enough people to do all the work required.

It requires a special kind of lunacy to think deporting people born in Japan and who've known nothing but Japan their entire lives is a good idea. These politicians need to be scrutinized heavily. If they are willing to follow the law so viciously that they don't mind destroying families, they should be subject to equal scrutiny in their financial dealings so the world can see the illegal transactions that are occurring at every level near the top of the Ministry of Justice.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

There are women who hook up with the locals and legals with the intention of bearing a child as a leverage for their stay. Definitely the child is pitiable and the legal or the local they hooked up with, who are so into them or are naive are pitiable too. Like this 16 yr old. Bet he's receiving some sort of welfare from the govt being a minor. There was that statement that a Jman is supporting them. Is the Jman has his own family and just believe in their plea to stay here, maybe the son's teacher or from an org supporting people with case like them? If the Jman supporting them, has been living with them for a long time, why can't he just marry her and arrange papers for them to stay legal? Some loose ends! Since Japan needs young blood, the move is understandable. Just like the Corderos.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

why can't he just marry her and arrange papers for them to stay legal?

If you a J-person marries a foreigner, the spouse visa is "usually" granted but not automatically. Immig' has the possibility to refuse, or to refuse it for a long while. Then the children of the foreign spouse are not automatically getting visas either particularly if they are not babies, even the adoption of the children by the Japanese spouse is not easily accepted. They have refused spouse visas for cases of foreigners that had past issues with migration services, and they are particularly severe with people from Asia.

son in limbo as well as immigration could go after him in time as well. No proof that immigration said anything about allowing him to stay.

Exactly. He should find a J-citizen girlfriend, get married on his 18th birthday, send naturalization file as soon as marriage certificate ink is dry... and get support from his local MPs. That helps a lot to use kone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not for this boy. That's why he chose to stay in Japan rather than live with his mother in Thailand

It cannot have been an easy devising and I am sure he would rather live near his mother. But as I doubt he can function well in Thailand, moving there is not realistic at his age.

Japan needs to be a bit more flexible in the application of its rules. As a once great country in long-term decline, it really needs all the help it can get.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

For a number of years now, I have wondered what is missing in Japanese Law / Culture but have never been able to put my finger on it. Having read this article, "the penny has dropped". Japanese Law lacks Equity.(an essential part of an advanced legal system).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

tinawatanabe: "It is not that tragic for a 16 year old high school kid to be seperated from mother. Many high schoolers go abroad to study or left alone from parents because of job transfer. No big deal."

Another tina generalization. So tell us how the separation was for you, tina, since you obviously speak from experience and can generalize on behalf of the entire human race. This isn't just the case of a kid going off, of his own volition, to another city or nation for a brief stint to study abroad -- it's a family being ripped apart and the son knowing full well his mother may never be allowed in the country again, meaning he'll only see her if he goes there. And it's not just a matter of, "Well, he could leave with her, and since he isn't he's okay," either. That kind of logic is just plain stupid.

But again, you've never been in this situation but here you are saying it's no big deal.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The mother by virtue of living here has certainly paid tax. It's impossible not to. Everytime she bought food, clothing, used utilities etc. Medical fees? She would have paid those at 100% or. auferes in silence. And renting a home here means a hefty deposit of hundreds of thousands of yen! Being illegal has also meant that she would've done some type of work off the radar. No doubt that was low paid and exploitary. Her son as a student here would've needed money for school fees, uniform,school trips. So, far from taking from Japan and being a burden the opposite is true Thailand is one of the most unequal societies in Asia and Phaphakdee, after 20 years here has just been sent back to it. However, Japan knows that ruling in favor of the defendant in these types of case would bring a flood of opportunists flooding into Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The mother by virtue of living here has certainly paid tax. It's impossible not to. Everytime she bought food, clothing, used utilities etc. Medical fees? She would have paid those at 100% or. auferes in silence. And renting a home here means a hefty deposit of hundreds of thousands of yen

but since she did not work to earn money, it wasn't her money that went into tax.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is a complex case and there are numerous cases like this in many other countries. It is not unique to Japan in any way. Emotionally it is an easy argument. Let her stay...at least until her son finishes high school. Legally it is different.

The article does not mention how Ms. Won has been supporting herself for 20 years, so it is hard to know if she has contributed to Japanese society or not. It would be nice to have more information. The court rightfully ruled her son could stay as her son appears to have adapted and Japan is the only home he knows. He also has someone to live with and support him (at least until he finishes high school) which is a good thing.

In the case of Ms. Won she did break a law. I think that is an undisputed fact. The law says I have to pay taxes in Japan. I do not like this law and it is burdensome. If the courts allow Ms. Won to break the immigration laws then what about those of us who do not like to pay taxes? Should people be allowed to break those laws as well? I am not sure about Japan but in the U.S. the judges are bound by oath to follow the law (although in some cases this does not happen). I think these cases really put the judges in a difficult situation.

My opinion is that, based on circumstances, they should allow Ms. Won to remain in the country until her son completes high school. At that time she should then be asked to return to Thailand and after a period of time be allowed to re-apply for entry into Japan.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Wow I like Japan on this one!! US please get rid of the illegals in the US take a stand like Japan did!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites