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Japan 'extremely behind' in promoting gender equality, gov't admits

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By Philip FONG

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Extremely behind is putting it mildly. Japan is so far behind in gender equality, it may as well be in the Stone Age. It isn’t completely the fault of men given how many women here enjoy being housewives.

Perhaps if women here stopped using the faux child voice, it would help.

10 ( +29 / -19 )

Japan is "extremely behind" in promoting gender equality its government said Friday, as it delayed an almost two decades-old target to have at least 30 percent of leadership positions occupied by women by the end of 2020.

Japan's government is extremely geriatric and chauvinistic in ways that would make the stereotypes of 50's TV blush. The only real way to make change in Japan is by throwing the old geezers out with the bathwater.

22 ( +26 / -4 )

The Japanese government has more pressing issues to work on right now. How about putting this perennial issue on the backburner.

-13 ( +10 / -23 )

The Japanese government is behind on a myriad of things.

Either the J politicians are extremely lazy or plain incompetent.

I can’t workout which it is.

14 ( +18 / -4 )

Either the J politicians are extremely lazy or plain incompetent.

Both.

20 ( +23 / -3 )

At least they admit they are decades behind, now it can be discussed for decades before forming a Pannel of experts to clarify after another decade that an urge might be appropriate.

18 ( +18 / -0 )

100 year goals

11 ( +13 / -2 )

When it comes to giving women priority on trains, Japan is leading the globe.

-14 ( +8 / -22 )

30 years behind, minimum. But that is the case for nearly everything here. The banking system, bureaucracy , particularly the government administration, buying a car paperwork, house rental maffia, quality of the housing, English proficiency, lack of recycling and environmental concerns, animal welfare...

18 ( +22 / -4 )

Admitting on the same day the can't be bothered making a simple change for spouses to legally use different family. The sentiment screams 'shoganai' aka breathtaking disingenuousness.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

It’s a deeply patriarchal society, and it will take a lot more than govt setting goals to change that.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's government approved a new five-year plan on gender equality, which says it will make efforts to meet the 30-percent target "at the earliest possible time" during the next decade.

Suga, save us and the LDP run government and just make it a 50 year plan even then we all know nothing would change.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who stepped down earlier this year, also repeatedly pledged to meet the same target, and made "womenomics" initiatives to include more women in the work force a key plank of his economic policy.

How about this? Instead of meaningless Dentsu generated catchphrases and 5 year plans and letting women have more representation in precarious administrative and service jobs to expand the taxbase ; have an actual meritocracy reflecting many Japanese women's superior abilities in a variety of skills and performance metrics ,like English ability, versus their overpaid male counterparts?

10 ( +11 / -1 )

I am now on the fence as to whether each nation should celebrate gender diversity pursuant to cultural diversity and societal factors.

Some might applause the Scandinavian countries for gender equality metrics, but to me it apoears as though men are adopting toxic masculinity traits or overt politically correct facades just to adjust to gender equality progress, and trust within society has suffered. I certainly would rather live elsewhere.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Suga’s cabinet includes only 1 or 2 women.

It says everything.

Gender equality is far from being in the leadership’s mind.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

That is simply wrong. If you only look at leading or official positions, you surely may get this impression. But in general, all very private manners , family life etc. are mostly in the hand of women and also the big cities are mostly so. There is almost nothing what men could interest, only one department stores next to the other, fashion shops in thousands, also one beside the next one , and the rest is about stylish cafeterias or restaurants. I would say, women rule already over more than 90% percent of the urban or public life, in rural areas or villages not so very much behind, admitted that this unbalance is still not represented or mirrored in politics, a very last or the last resort for men...lol

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I have an idea, promote based on experience and talent. Afterall we have been taught for over a decade that "gender is a false system of social construct because of its fluidity". So why promote a false social construct.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The Japanese government has more pressing issues to work on right now. How about putting this perennial issue on the backburner.

How long would you suggest? Another 30 years?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Japan's government is extremely geriatric

Yes, perhaps instead of only focusing on gender equality, but also age diversity. Even when women are given leadership positions, they're often over 60 years old.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

TIJ. And what does the government say they will do about it? "Someday something may happen!" and then blames society and shrugs.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Study after study now shows us that women in countries with increasing levels of 'gender equality' are becoming less satisfied with their lives and more unhappy. This social experiment has not led to the results we were promised.

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

Maybe Suga and Co could start by allowing married couples to have different surnames? Nah... that would be a CHOICE, and they couldn't say "Shouganai" anymore if they took responsibility towards changing Japan's abysmal gender equality record.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

kyushubill: Afterall we have been taught for over a decade that "gender is a false system of social construct because of its fluidity". So why promote a false social construct.

Because the social justice zealots that demand specific social outcomes don’t care about logic - their ideology is riddled with contradictions and inconsistencies. It’s a religious belief at best and a cult at worst. What matters is control and the enforcement of perceived equal outcomes regardless of the wants and desires of the individuals who make up a society.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

You can say that louder, so that all the females in your country can hear.

For centuries, Japan has not treated women equally. Subdued women continue to endure their suffering. Is it not time now for a real change?

Action please, not empty words..

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

For centuries, Japan has not treated women equally. Subdued women continue to endure their suffering.

Japanese women report higher levels of happiness and life satisfaction than Japanese men.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

@venze

OH PULEEZE!

Suffering? All I see is women who choose to be housewives out eating overly sweet cake and drinking over priced colored water called "coffee" and spending more money at Mitsukoshi for "Mama time". While tossing their husband 5000 yen a month as their "allowance".

Working women on the train spending money on their phone at Rakuten and Tsubame web mall.

Mothers with small children picking them up at day care and peddling away on their Mamachari.

Where are all the tear stained faced women you speak of? I sure don't see them.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

They also need not discriminate job seekers against age. I’m sure many foreigners working in jland knows the ordeal

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Japanese women report higher levels of happiness and life satisfaction than Japanese men.

Women are happier only because they don’t realize how bad they have it. There should be a government program that teaches them they are miserable and oppressed and will remain so until they have a 12 hour a day, six day a week job just like the men do.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

OMG. Behind is already shameful, extremely behind is extremely shameful, any doubt ?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wolfpack said "Women are happier only because they don’t realize how bad they have it. "

What do you mean ? Why would women be happier when behind ?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Maybe Japanese companies should start picking random shufu at Aeon as they shop for dinner in the afternoon and appoint them as company directors?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Aloe: What do you mean ? Why would women be happier when behind ?

That statement was meant as sarcasm. I was commenting on the fact that in general Japanese women are reportedly more happy than men. There are people trying to convince Japanese women that if they were more like men they would be better off. I think that depends on your perspective. I don’t think being a housewife implies you are behind in anything- it’s an important job to raise children in a stable environment.

Would a woman be better off if she chose to be a housewife and enjoy more free time? Some women may prefer that option other than being expected to work long hours in an office or factory job. I do believe that if a woman wants to work in the same jobs as men there should be no barriers to that. I would just not like to see women have their choices reduced in the way that men’s are. I think there are a surprisingly large number of Japanese women who prefer not to live the same work life as men are expected to live. Would you want to take that choice away from women or force them into the workforce?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

M3M3M3Today 11:26 am JST

Study after study now shows us that women in countries with increasing levels of 'gender equality' are becoming less satisfied with their lives and more unhappy. This social experiment has not led to the results we were promised.

This is not even remotely true in any fashion.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Why must we be equal? What does that even mean? Humans are different: the two genders are different, cultures are different, races are different. These are facts, confirmed by research and biology. Men are better at some things women are better at others. I haven't seen anyone complain or worry that women far outweigh men as nurses or school teachers. In western countries women far outnumber men in law and veterinary studies.... no one seems to want to""equalise"" those areas. This is just more neo-marxist, woke nonsense.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The writer of the article implies there are only two genders in Japan, male and female, when all of those people freed from such a narrow concept by Science know there are more than 2 genders so shouldn’t pangender folks, for one instance, be included in the Japanese government?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Jaymann: " Humans are different"

Humans are the same; characters are different, as well as what we are taught to believe about the genders and cultures.

"the two genders are different"

Well, that much is true, physically, but what makes a man better at sitting at an amakudari job, drinking coffee after failing as a politician who did nothing to make the country better for women and men alike? What biologically makes a man better at running a business into the ground? I can tell you this, just as one example of how women are equal if not better than men in leadership positions: the countries doing the best with Covid-19? led by women.

"Men are better at some things women are better at others."

Again, what positions mentioned in the article are men better at than women?

"I haven't seen anyone complain or worry that women far outweigh men as nurses or school teachers."

Because you haven't looked. Or more specifically, there have been articles that have addressed this issue, such as a male teacher being very popular among kids at a nursery school and how "hesitant" parents were to let kids go there, etc., and there were no logical reasons presented as to why a man could not do an equal job as a female teacher, especially if it's a young father, whereas the female teachers have no children.

"In western countries women far outnumber men in law and veterinary studies...."

How on earth does biology play a role in ability there? You are defeating your own arguments, and I guarantee if there is gender bias in the hiring you will hear about it.

"no one seems to want to""equalise"" those areas. This is just more neo-marxist, woke nonsense."

All you've proven is that a lot of men are incapable of thinking beyond tunnel vision, like the old geezers in J-politics, who can even admit they are WAY behind. But again, feel free to show how having male genitals makes for a better politician that female genitals, or vice-versa to neuter a cat. You can't.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

In the political sphere, women are having to balance political activities and domestic tasks 

Men in the political sphere have to balance political activities and the longest working hours in the OECD. Knocking up a Chinese with a CookDo or a curry with a roux and boiling some rice and cleaning a 60sq meter apartment, if you can be bothered, does not take all day.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

What else would you expect from a patriarchal, misogynist society run by a bunch a geriatric old men?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@girl_in_tokyo

This is not even remotely true in any fashion.

If it's not true, can you provide a single piece of evidence showing that women’s happiness and satisfaction increases with the rise of gender equality?

The science is clear. Studies like Stevenson and Wolfers' 'The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness' and other studies with similar findings show that many western women are more unhappy now than in previous decades. We can argue about the underlying causes of this unhappiness, but the downward trend is not in dispute.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

"Because the social justice zealots that demand specific social outcomes don’t care about logic - their ideology is riddled with contradictions and inconsistencies. It’s a religious belief at best and a cult at worst. What matters is control and the enforcement of perceived equal outcomes regardless of the wants and desires of the individuals who make up a society."

Who'd have though conservatives and liberals could be so much alike? Pot, meet Kettle...

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Promoting gender equality is definitely encouraged. Pay should be equal to both genders for the same job.

The question is, do the majority of women in Japan want the same jobs we see the men dominating in?

It comes down to interests and it is obvious that some fields garnish more from males and others from females.

Creating a forced outcome for job positions based on gender shouldn't be encouraged.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Same sex intercourse was legalized in Japan in 1880 after a briefly being illegal for a few years. Japan was ahead of the rest of the world by more than 100 years. Japan did not wag its finger at other countries for being a century behind.

Society is organized differently in different cultures and we are now all told that all cultures are valid and none are superior. How the people of Japan decide to organize their society is their business and perfectly valid.

Just as there is social pressure in Japan to become a housewife and care for family with love that certainly does not fit all woman, there is social pressure in more "advanced" countries to send children off the daycare so she can work that is also certainly does not fit all woman. Don't think for a minute that woman in European countries have the option to manage a home and family, they don't.

The reality is that the overwhelming majority of men and woman will never by a CEO or a member of the Diet. most people will spend decades of their life toiling away at a job they hate.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Japan can start by criminalizing and enforcing rapes, and maybe not allowing people with convicted rape histories to continue being teachers.

I have several personal friends who are raped, one is even kept in the guy's house for several days suffering repeated rapes, but prosecutors never bothered to file for any charges.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

There is gender inequality in Japan because Japanese women enable it.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Japan is "extremely behind" in promoting gender equality its government said

The land of loving to state the obvious.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's government approved a new five-year plan on gender equality, which says it will make efforts to meet the 30-percent target "at the earliest possible time" during the next decade.

What plan? I'd like to see this ? step plan. The next decade.....................Isn't that what they say every decade?

Just 14.8 percent of leadership positions in politics and business in Japan are occupied by women, "lagging extremely behind internationally," the Cabinet Office said.

Lagging behind in many things over many issues for many decades to be more accurate.

"womenomics"

What does that even mean?

The Cabinet Office blamed social acceptance of traditional gender roles for the slow progress, saying the government would "make efforts so that women will occupy around 30 percent of leadership positions in the early part of the 2020s."

So in other words, blaming themselves? More obvious statements.

> In the political sphere, women are having to balance political activities and domestic tasks and they face various harassments based on their gender, it said.

Or, you know, Japanese men could also step up their game and do as much as they can to support their spouses.

And businesses have not been enthusiastic about promoting women, it added.

"Overall, society as a whole still leans toward stereotypical gender roles and has unconscious bias," it said.

Yup, due to a$$backward thinking and lack of logic.

To be fair, many women also refuse to step up at the same time.

How many times have I talked to young women saying their goal was to be a housewife or to quit their job when they get married?

Not ALL women, but a significant amount for sure.

But like other people say, the "leaders" in this country have to be either very ignorant, not creative, can't adapt, don't care, lazy, or hired through nepotism or a combination of several of these.

This country as a whole needs to just wake up already.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

also water is wet, the sky is blue. Original goal itself was already 20 years behind, and that was 17 years ago. It's just window dressing for the sake of PR, not actual action

1 ( +2 / -1 )

For anyone who isn't japanese and who had lived in japan for a few decades you may have noticed that some women in japan are perfectly fine getting an education to get a job to bide her time until she finds a guy to marry to be a be at home mom while the husband slaves away. Surely you've noticed this.

This is not a criticism. Just an observation.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

@kyushubill

Where are all the tear stained faced women you speak of? I sure don't see them.

I have some - women who worked in my technology consulting firm in Tokyo who had to deal with overt discriminatory behavior from men to the point I had to escalate within the client firm to tell it’s men to stop with the chauvinism. I lost one of my finest employees due to this disgraceful behavior. There are many career women suffering while you’re looking in the wrong place.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@jaymann

Why must we be equal? What does that even mean? Humans are different: the two genders are different, cultures are different, races are different.

We must be treated equally because as humans we are fundamental equal (99.96% the same equal in genetic terms). There are biological differences between genders but how does that excuse discrimination in the workplace? And people of different tones are different in phenotype, but are essentially the same and all coming from a common origin. People who do not want to treat others equally look for every excuse to find differences, yet tend to complain quickly when they are treated unfairly.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

It's not going to change until they kick out all the freaking old people in leading positions and let the young people lead their and the next generation with fresh thinking. Young people want change, but they are unable to make it happen due to seniority-based company structures.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Nonsense. "Young people" are worse.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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