national

New daycare centers held up by residents opposing noisy kids

92 Comments
By Linda Sieg

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

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2014.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

92 Comments
Login to comment

Only in Japan? This is a symptom of the fact most Tokyo neighborhoods were never actually planned. Over the years, property owners simply plonked down their homes wherever they wanted, hogged as much space as possible and didn't think in terms of an integrated community. They obliterated the green areas, while dismissing the need for buffer zones, roads of proper width, sidewalks, boulevards, etc.

So now these areas are a congested mess, where the cheek to jowl residents refuse to cooperate. So at this point, it's hard to actually add or enhance this areas, such as adding daycare centers.

16 ( +20 / -4 )

What is wrong with these people? Do they not know that biologically, quiet children are not a good thing? Did none of them not ever have children of their own? Setagaya is one of the wealthiest wards in Tokyo; essentially people can afford to have children there. In addition to changing the laws, perhaps, new parents in Setagaya may consider “voting with their feet” if appropriate daycare facilities are not provided. Any bets on how fast the ward administration will come around when they see their tax base eroding?

11 ( +16 / -5 )

Idiots. The sound of children happily playing is the sound of peace.

25 ( +30 / -5 )

What a selfish bunch of grumpy people. They were kids once! Mutilate their ears if all they want is peace.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

the wealthy shut-ins are being disturbed by life around them. As the population drops people become more hostile towards children. It's self fulfilling

11 ( +15 / -4 )

I wonder if these sad individuals are also complaining about the plethora of REAL noise-pollution here : the election vans, ear-splitting station announcements, black-van neo-nazis blaring hate-speech, advertising trucks and so on? I doubt it. The sound of kids playing is rare and a million times better than all this other noise we are bombarded with here.

27 ( +30 / -3 )

Playing children are noise pollution? These complaining boneheads should have their pension cancelled.

20 ( +22 / -2 )

Most Japanese live like cave dwellers anyway, not opening their windows nor going outside, so how are they going to hear the little ones?

Besides, kids can be trained to not scream.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Those people there are too selfish to push there points. If there complaints will fulfill and this will be adapted to other wards, these people should be put back to their childhood days and they will be hit at their back head to shut-up by their parents. They didn't realized that they once became a child and went to this childhood stage.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Noise pollution: Almost inevitable n Japan. By some accounts, the Japanese came unconsciously to crave noise after World War II, associating it with construction, assembly lines and other signs that the devastation left by the war was being put behind them. Indeed, there is a case to be made that what Japanese society today fears is silence.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

I would guess that it is much easier to get gaudy pachinko parlors built in Japan than daycare centers.

It astounds me how tolerant people here are about certain forms of noise/sight pollution, while being completely hypersensitive killjoys when it comes to the sounds of children playing. There are some serious issues in this country about getting life priorities straight.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Noisy country on the planet except for the conspicuous absence of children's laughter.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I live very close to the Chinese consulate in my city. The consulate itself is perfectly quiet, but every weekend and holiday I get blasted by wartime patriotic songs played at full volume by morons in black vans who probably hate me too.

And these people are complaining about the sound of children playing?

They must be the grumpiest people in the world.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

Daycare being held up by nosy neighbors.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I live out in the countryside where the bosozoku ride one of the routes every weekend around 2-3 in the morning. They arrive like clockwork every Saturday night with their earsplitting motorcycles. Do the police or the local people do anything to stop them? Of course not. But I am glad to hear that Japanese can organize themselves to fight against the wild pre-schoolers of Japan!!

14 ( +15 / -1 )

My take frm this article is..

prompting Hosaka, a former MP, to suggest Japan learn from Germany and change laws to prevent such lawsuits.

Well, thats good to acknowledge some great things to be learned here but not on other areas.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Could understand at night but we are only taking about the hours of 9 - 5 AT THE MOST, these old people need to get out of their homes. There are far more nosier things in Tokyo than children playing.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Most if not all of these day care centers are run by private groups and are not located on land owned by the municipalities. With the declining school age population of children the Govt should allow the extra school space to be used also for day care purposes. Basically set aside a corner of the local elementary schools for day care purposes. Heck... there are already a bunch of screaming kids at the schools.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I would rather listen to children than the old folks argue and the cars go by. Jeepers.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

NIMBY's at work complaining that, "...say children’s voices are too loud and are wrecking their quiet neighborhoods" - yet won't think twice about living less than 50 meters from an active train line.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It goes without saying that the most likely culprits are retirees, since they tend to be home during the daylight operating hours of a daycare. Which begs the question of how utterly daft and myopic must these grumpy old fools be? It goes without saying that children are the very lifeblood of any society, but what these selfish asshats have failed to realize is that without children to bolster Japan's shriking population and shrinking tax base, the social pension checks that these bitter old fools count on for their retirement would simply dry up.

These pissy nuisances should be uprooted immediately from their overinflated positions of self-importance in said neighboorhoods via imminent domain and public policy judgements and removed to a distant mountaintop to enjoy all the silence they can handle.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Having lived next to a park in Kobe, I know how loud kids can be kicking their soccer balls against the chain link fences.

But nothing justifies this whining! I read in the news the other day about an unemployed guy threatening kids with an axe outside one of these daycares for being too loud! Ridiculous!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WinczNS62Wg (Japanese language only)

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I lived in a dead end street in Kita-ku, Tokyo for 9 years, which was safe for kids to play out in as there was no through traffic. I could sit in my living room and listen to the kids play ball and sometimes chat to them when I went out - it was lovely. We when moved one boy made us a big card wishing us luck in the future. We will all be in a graveyard sometime but it doesn't have to be now.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

It is so hard to wrap my mind over people living in a busy metropolitan complaining about noise, but anyway the government should not cave in to these selfish people. Maybe they can use a patriotism angle to get the older folks to cooperate?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Wow don't these old foggies know they are know different than those whinning kids they are complaining about? They should be happy they could hear some sounds of useful life or are they envious knowing heir time is nearing and they refuse to want to hear those useful sounds. The government has to tell these old foggies take it or leave knowing the children are the future not only for the good of the country but also to keep the money coming to feed these old foggy pensions.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Motorbikes, politicians, rubbish pickup vans, signage, blaring all hours, no problem.. Start nuclear power plants that no one wants running, sure, raise the cost of living effecting the people who already are struggling, sure..

. but some kids, which the country so desperately needs.. too noisy too much hard work.

Japan is finished with thinking like this.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

What a sad commentary on the country. Japan really is out of touch with the rest of the world in so many ways.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

They need to tell those old folk that those children will be paying their pensions in 10-15 years time.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

How about asking these elderly residents to remove their hearing aids during the short time the kids are outside happily making noise?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

If hey don';t realize these happy children's voice deter robbers, Setagaya Ward should enforce new building codes. Complainers' houses have to be improved to sound proof like intensive care units of hospitals,

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The purpose of the daycare centers is to funnel money to construction companies and has nothing to do with the welfare or quality of life of people. When are you people going to learn this? :)

As for the screaming kids, come back and post after you've passed your 60th birthday.

Our ears change and there are not many things more painful for those of us over 60 than the high-pitched squeal of screaming kinds. Build them somewhere else and not in my backyard.

Oh, and get off my lawn!

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

"Maybe they can use a patriotism angle to get the older folks to cooperate?"

Yeah! Get Shintaro Ishihara and Toru Hashimoto to come over and whip 'em up into a Kimigayo frenzy!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The answer is simple, ensure equality. For every rehabilitation center, old-age home or other center for the aged a child care facility, children's clinic or other child friendly place (like a park or children' play place) should be built, and this should be a rule for all local governments.

Then the next time old fogeys come in complaining about a child care facility being built just point out politely that means that the old-age home will have to be demolished to ensure parity, and they'll have to move elsewhere.

... One way or another that'll sort out the problem. Either all the old-age care facilities will disappear and the old grumps will be forced to move, or they'll learn to share (a lesson that most 4 year olds have mastered, but that seems to have skipped the baby boomer generation in Japan).

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I live near a daycare and it is noisy-- not because of the kids, but because like many other things in Japan, it's blasting cheery songs and bells etc. over a loud-speaker system. But, it's only for a few hours in the middle of the day. No nights, no early mornings, no weekends. I only notice noise from there when I have a rare weekday off.

I love the natural sound of children but dislike loudspeakers as much as the next person...I think kids could enjoy a great daycare without a single loudspeaker, but in Japan it's apparently necessary...

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Wonder if these anti-noise seniors either never had grandchildren or hate New Years when their grandchildren visit.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I lived by a school all my life both here and in Ireland.I personally love the sounds of kids playing

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Sound proof the walls of the day care? Is that not possible?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

When I chose the place where I live, I purposely selected an area with no school, daycare, or park. Some people prefer an adults-only or mostly type of neighborhood. Some neighbors have young children but most are relatively well-mannered.

I'm glad I selected my home area carefully. But I wouldn't want a daycare to be built within earshot either.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

I'm agnostic about population growth--eco benefits vs. econo challenges--but these folks are something else. There was another article not long ago about parks facing similar opposition, jungle gyms and such being removed, sports banned etc. The cult of decorum here is sometimes maddening. As others have mentioned, it's bizarrely selective--targeting families and small children. But aspiring mobsters, pachinko-ites, brownshirt broadcasters, those pleading for your old appliances--all good. In my country, they'd be egged and beaten, and the bikers would get beheaded by fishing line.

For a xenophobic country whose only palatable solution is increasing the birthrate, there sure is lots of stoopid to lather around. I second the idea of exiling them to the dying hinterlands, test cases for wider dystopia to come.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I'm pretty much going to have to disagree with everybody who's commented so far...

The sound of a laughing kid or two, great. The sound of 10 kids screaming their heads off, not so great.

I would guess most of these neighborhood residents who are complaining ARE old, so don't fault them for wanting to relax at home in peace in quiet.

The argument that Tokyo is already noisy...well, then two wrongs make a right? I`m sure these residents would be just as upset if there was any noise of substance blasting their neighborhood.

So here're my solutions...

1) Use Japan's capacity and tendency to reclaim land, and build a "kid island" - get Disney to pay for it.

2) Put the daycare centers in business districts, so that company workers with kids can just drop them off on the way to work and be able to check in on them during the day.

3) If daycare centers must be built in neighborhoods, require a certain amount of soundproofing in the facilities. "Well, what about kids playing outside?" you ask...simple, don't let them go outside. Again, use Japan's state-of-the-art technology to create the outdoors indoors - yes, I'm talking virtual reality, complete with the sights, sounds, and smells of the outdoors. So Monday could be forest day, Tuesday beach day, Wednesday the zoo... you get the drift. And the best part, no need to take the kids to the real outside where there are real hazards. Let Japan engineer its way to happy kids.

-12 ( +3 / -15 )

Where does it say they are old people complaining? Is it fair that people like me who bought properties in quiet areas for that reason have it taken away from them by people who want to make money? Why have we accepted as a society that its OK that both parents have to work to earn enough money and have to farm out child raising to paid strangers? Why do most people think that kids playing in a confined area don't constitute noise pollution let alone crazy mothers who drive focused only on picking up their kids is not a concern. Hmmm probably a waste of time writing this.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Noisy KIDS ? ha ha . Then who will pay for pension of this residents.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

It goes without saying that the most likely culprits are retirees, since they tend to be home during the daylight operating hours of a daycare. Which begs the question of how utterly daft and myopic must these grumpy old fools be? It goes without saying that children are the very lifeblood of any society, but what these selfish asshats have failed to realize is that without children to bolster Japan's shriking population and shrinking tax base, the social pension checks that these bitter old fools count on for their retirement would simply dry up.

These pissy nuisances should be uprooted immediately from their overinflated positions of self-importance in said neighboorhoods via imminent domain and public policy judgements and removed to a distant mountaintop to enjoy all the silence they can handle.

@LFRAgain Great post, and I wish that it could be translated and put into a newpaper editorial.

We have a school near our mansion and Mr. Holly and I would be considered middle-aged, yet we don't mind the screaming and hollering of young children during lunch or on their way back home from school. It's a welcoming sound for us, reminding ourselves of our children's childhood as well as our own.

Yet, we have a young-ish couple with no kids living below us who would call us early in the evening to tell us our son was making too much noise while using a punching bag, or playing the violin too loud. LMAO! It's these types that need to be sent to distant mountain tops to enjoy the silence. They have no place living in the city.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

How about coming up with some sort of program where the people who complain are made to interact with the kids. They may then learn to appreciate and tolerate it better. Around my neighborhood, there are little gaijin kids who would gather after school everyday for around just an hour to chase each other and run around. They were forced to stop since some people complained. Now they just quietly go home after school and probably play on their video games. But at odd hours into the night and early mornings there are noisy bike riders who ride around with impunity revving their engines. That never seems to stop. Children are just an easy target. Japan needs to relax and loosen up a bit.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

child care facilities are needed there because maids and house keeopers of Setahaya people have to work for many houses there, Very well to do people's area, Setagaya has been.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

What's the bet the majority of the people complaining are over 60 years old? I'd have a very simple response to their complaints, "Shut up or move!" I'm astonished the government is even listening to the petty complaints!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

What shocks me about this story is that these "noisy kids" they are complaining about are basically the grand-kids of their generation. And in my time in Japan I always thought the luckiest guys I ever saw were the grand-fathers spending time on weekend days with their grand sons and grand daughters, because the fathers were either working or too tired to be with them. But without that silly salaryman-pressure anymore the grand dads could just relax and enjoy some quality time with their grand kids. Now they are just a nusance. Sad.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The sounds of children playing are no more annoying than listening to the birds sing. Given the decreasing birth rate you would think all people realise the importance of them. They are just the sound of the future.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Interesting that the focus is strongly on the noise problem, the 'solution' being that the oldies should 'remove their hearing aids' and be thankful for their pensions.

There are plans to turn the plot of land adjacent to my mil's home in Central Tokyo into a daycare for kids. My mil loves kids, worked all her life as a children's nurse, loves having the g-grandkids round to visit, finds the sound of kids playing music to her ears. No problems there. The problem is that the plot of land in question is currently being used as a gate ball / social arena / sunbathing / strolling spot for the local oldies. Building the day care centre will take all that away. The powers that be have suggested building an alternative oldies site, but the location that has been suggested is too far away for most of them to get there. She and her oldie mates are resigned to being more or less confined to the house and cut off from any social interaction once building starts.

There is certainly a need for more facilities to care for the children of working parents, but simply bulldozing away all the existing soft infrastructure that people depend on is not a workable solution.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

I've said it once and I'll say it again - this country is run by the elderly. Even the head of the 2020 Olympics is ancient. And the elderly are the only one's who vote, so the MPs will do anything to curry favour with them. Bit of a joke, really.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Kinda hard to sympathize with a society that does everything it can to ensure its demise.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

A big part of the problem is the type of housing elderly residents live in. They often live in wooden shacks with or without a vinyl wrap, so of course a lot of noise comes through the walls. Kids can be very noisy and that noise can be irritating, but it's the workers with the kids who are paying their pensions. The country is being run by the elderly because they are the only ones who vote and they love complaining about young people.

The article mentions steps to improve the birth rate failing, but there are no steps to improve the birth rate. Increasing the consumption tax and creating price inflation with no wage inflation makes having a family even more expensive. Trying to get the young women out doing crap jobs and chucking their kids into day care will also do nothing for the birth rate either. Why claim there are such steps being taken when we all know it's not the case? Japan will never get its birth rate above 1.5 and has no policies at all to make this happen.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Perhaps they can encourage older residents to wail their tuneless enka from the snack bars in the daytime instead of the evenings to drown out the noise of the kids.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@scoobydoo... do you hear a plane? Because I think you're living on fantasy island! Yes it is the old people complaining. Who else would... young people that are at work... couples that have kids.... young singles... they don't care. Not to mention I know the head person at a day care in a crowded neighborhood and she says its always the old people. And her boss that manages 20 day care centers says the same.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@darnname

As for the screaming kids, come back and post after you've passed your 60th birthday.

I'm back - after passing my 60th birthday - and have noticed it's usually the younger generation who complain... I also complain, but NOT about children's laughter, I complain about the black-trucks - loud-speakers blaring away, the "bosozoku" in the middle of the night and all the other unnecessary noises we "older folk" have to put up with... The laughter of little children is more than welcome !

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@FightingViking... right "you've noticed"... come on... fess up... you've notice didly.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Tell these selfish people that without the sound of children playing not only would their lives be meaningless, they would end a lot more quickly because there will be no one in the future to pick up the tab for them continuing to live. Or, give them an ultimatum: the sound of kids playing, or a bunch of foreign immigrants in the nation? which do they want in the near future to help sustain the nation? Or they can forfeit their pension and health care coverage (still have to pay them, though)

In any case, I bet the people complaining don't call up the police to complain about the bosozoku riding around, or all the other noise pollution. Kids make an easy target.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Noisy kids? No. I live near a private nursery and the problem is the parents chauffeuring their off spring to and from the place - doors slamming, engines kept running, double parking, illegal parking..... I can see residents objecting to that, but the noise of children being children isn't a problem. Cars are not a problem with the elementary school next door.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

While it is understandable that people would like a place to getaway from all the "noise" in Japan (See this recent article of the Japan Times speaking on the subject below), I can not understand why people would use that as an excuse to keep day care centers out of their neighborhood. The people in my neighborhood would welcome one, which would bring more young families to the area and reinvigorate the community. Also, I pass by a daycare that probably hosts about 30 - 40 children on a regular basis. The children play outside sometimes. I never hear them until I am literally right in front of the center - maybe a shriek or two from two buildings away if I really open my ears. I think in this instance the day care centers should be built, and let the complaining folks spend their money on the law suits if they like. If the old folks want to compare it to living next to a military base, then they have a lot of information to collect to prove that the decibels coming from the day care center are intolerable and hearing loss has occurred over a long period of time.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2014/10/10/lifestyle/making-noise-keeping-decibels/#.VDtjR74xF-U

For a culture that places a high value on quiet, Japan can get pretty noisy sometimes, whether it’s the loud and long-winded announcements on trains and buses, the big cacophonous TV screens around shopping centers, the right-wing nationalists’ trucks that drive around blaring marching music and imperialist slogans out of loudspeakers or the infamous election campaigners who likewise promote themselves at ear-splitting volumes.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There is nothing in the article that says anything about seniors objecting to day care centers. Until proven otherwise, it unfair to blame seniors for being NIMBYs.

The article contains one poignant quote:

"The number of children is declining so people think daycare centres have nothing to do with them and see them as something that could cause unpleasantness in their lives," Kansai University Professor Fumiharu Yamagata told NHK public TV.

This goes back to something to what I have said here before: that with the declining population of children, social institutions are morphing to create de facto exclusion of children for public life.

The very need for day care centers points to the demise of the extended family, once the primary social institution that assisted in the care of children. Day care centers, however necessary, are warehouses for essentially useless children. You can be sure that not all the noise coming out of those facilities is happy. There must also be cries of loneliness.

The venom unleashed here (gratuitously) against old people, points to an analogous problem. Old people are seen as useless roadblocks to the shrinking society of youthful vigor. Old people are rendered as useless as little children and like those children have to be warehoused.

Who are the NIMBYs? The only guess I can dare venture at this reading is that they are people with no practical experience with children, except as tantrum throws in restaurants and on trains.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

This article only cites one instance of old-timer resistance to daycare centers -- in Setagaya ward. Where else is this happening. One example does not show a trend make.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

These pissy nuisances should be uprooted immediately from their overinflated positions of self-importance in said neighboorhoods via imminent domain...

What the hell is "imminent domain?"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

She and her oldie mates are resigned to being more or less confined to the house and cut off from any social interaction once building starts.

That is what hospitals in Japan for used for by the old.

Billions are spend on the aged in this country as they vote, pennies in comparison on kids whom this country needs desperately to remain viable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

WhirledPeas: "Where else is this happening. One example does not show a trend make."

There have been countless articles about old people going up to parks and screaming and shouting at children to be quiet (some even threatening the children and parents), so it's quite easy to assume that it's not just ONE instance of an seniors being the ones complaining. On the contrary, I doubt very much that a community with a number of young families is going to complain about a nursery school opening up in the area.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Seems pretty unreasonable to demand residents leave their homes if they dont like the idea of a particular project. And to disregard the feelings of the elderly the way some have is offensive. The fact is these residents all contribute to society and the elderley have done so for many years.

If there are so many fewer children being born, the artcle predicts a population fall of 30%, this must generate spare capacity in the school system. Perhaps some of that space can be put to good use?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I have gone over the article again and I see no mention of old people anyway, including Setagaiya ward. Am I missing something?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

danalawton1@yahoo.comOct. 13, 2014 - 01:01PM JST @scoobydoo... do you hear a plane? Because I think you're living on fantasy island!

Must do. I moved to where I live because it is quiet and a good environment and I will defend my right to maintaining this environment. Glad none of you are my kids, you'd have me in a nursing home when I get a little grey hair.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

I have heard countless anecdotes from my friends and students who refrain from letting their own children to play in a local parks because residents complain bitterly about the noise.

My municipality is bursting at the seams with various facilities for elders! There's one near my home that is clean and modern, and although ostensibly open to all, it is really just a community center for old folks. They are allowed to go in at any time and drink tea, stay as long as they like, and take part in various cultural lessons for 100 yen a day. I rented a room there for my kiddies' classes. Within three months we were chased out by the oldies, who complained about the noise and about us supposedly misusing the facilities. We had no place else to go, and ended up disbanding as a result. I'm sorry for those kids.

In the past couple of years two nursery schools in my neighborhood were closed and converted to elder care centers.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Clearly it SUCKS to grow up in Japan thank goodness I didn't!

With attitudes like these twits in Tokyo, another nail in the coffin comes to mind.

I have predicted the birth rate at some point in the not too distant future is going to drop significantly. I think the population of Japan is going to drop a LOT faster than the predictions being made of late, like so many predictions here they seem to be overly rosy, costs always skyrocket(ie Olympics etc) & I think the number of kids is going to plummet & a lot of people that are having kids shouldn't & likely cant afford to do it, more bad news likely!

Would love to be proven wrong but unlikely!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

The noise of children playing is probably the only thing in Tokyo that is not louder today than it was 50 or 100 years ago.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I agree with ribstick... It's understandable that many people may be fine with a few laughing children but not a building full of kids screaming at all hours of the day. Either they should soundproof the walls or play the daycare facilities in busy, non-residential areas. A lot of people here are older and want to rest at home in peace and they deserve that.

As for the advertising trucks and whatnot that people keep mentioning, most of those noises are just annoying, not quite so high pitched and earsplitting. Biologically, children screaming and crying is MEANT to cause us great distress so that we run to take care of them... I hope I don't get too much hate on me, but I personally have ears very sensitive to high pitched noises like screaming and even prefer to use plastic instead of silverware because the sound bothers me so much. My ears have just been like that since I was a kid...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

This discussion is getting sicker by the hour. This is not an article about old people. I have read it up and down and constantly it avoids a single group of people as the complainers. The hatred vented at old people is not only disgusting it is also off topic.

You should be aware that a lot of young Japanese are childless by choice,. A lot of these people work from home in this computer age. They might be unhappy about noise as well.

Let me repeat that as the population drops society will be less child friendly simply because children do not leave a large enough social footprint.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Thing is, if society does become increasingly less child friendly, it will produce less children and then in the end there will be no society left at all!

When I was growing up, the old timers would actually set up a corner in the street in the afternoon and gather us all there. They would tell stories to kids age 3 upwards. That stopped us from being 'noisy' (just an idea, it was a time when we were still very trusting). I do remember some 3 or 4 old folks who hated us still, just for being young and energetic.

I do like the idea of building kiddie facilities- old timers facilities in the same amount and therefore maybe getting it across that both are needed in a healthy society.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Enjoying the sounds of playing children once in a while, walking by the daycare centers, doesn't equate to enjoying it for much of every single workday over timespans of years.

Some Beijing estate blocks have got big parks in the middle surrounding their daycenters.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Some of you are amazingly humorless.

Look, the sound of children laughing is not the same sound as children screeching at 188 dBA.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Most people don't have to put up with it next to their flats. The only person I know that does is five stories up, so they don't hear it unless they open a window, and they like to do that once in a while. Very generous to say that OTHER people who happen to live next to proposed centers, especially pensioners who stay home all day, should just put up with it because it's got to go somewhere. Centers should have some noise amelioration efforts if there's conflict.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I,d suggest the city hall proceeds with building the much needed childcare centres asap and any self absorbed, pitiful wrinkly that comes in to complain be issued with a set of stylish brightly coloured earplugs and an instruction manual on how to safely use them as a " top quality, noise protection device ". Sobs.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Children playing is the sound of a nations future and the hope of tomorrow, if a person opposes or finds discomfort on this he is dooming humanity

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It's time to repopulate the inaka methinks.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Smithin Japan: I'm not arguing that there is or isn't widespread NIMBY against daycare centers. Mine was an editorial criticism. Sorry if I was not clear. Each article a reporter writes stands alone, not in the context of other articles that have previously appeared in that media source over time. So if the reporter titles the article (as was done here) " New Daycare Centers [plural] held up by residents opposing noisy kids," she should show evidence of more than one case of NIMBY. The other option is to title the article "New Daycare Center [singular] held up by residents opposing noisy kids." Then the reporter can talk about the challenges to that single daycare center and opine that if a NIMBY attitude is encountered in many places, it is going to hurt Japan's campaigns to increase the birthrate and to encourage women to work.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

With the actual number of children decreasing and schools being closed, why not repurpose some of the schools or portions of the schools as daycare? Those are already properly zoned. That would also reduce construction costs.

holyholly, there's a big difference between "imminent" and "eminent".

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Probably the same people who get upset if they walk into a shop and don't get the loud and annoying "irashai" when they walk in. I would imagine that some of it is probably guilt. Those who hear the noise of the kids may regret not having spent the time with their own if they had them, or the life they could have had. Whatever the case, I can understand to a point, but I don't think that complaining and banning them is a solution.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Here's an idea, how about building real daycare centers in the big office buildings and apartment buildings people work and live in? If the government is talking about increasing the number of working women, how come the brand new skyscrapers being built don't have this kind of facility?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Kabukilover, 'Am I missing something?'

No, youre not. Sadly people suffering from a lack of success look for a scapegoat. The least imaginative leap from dislike of noisy kids is grumpy old folks. Thyere an easy target.

I my house backs on to a school and at times its really noisy and the roads clog badly in the morning. The school was here first though so I have to respect that and it also made the land significantly cheaper. If I owned a house in a quiet area and was threatened with a noisy neighbour like a daycare centre, I think I might be concerned not just for the peace and quiet but also for the impact it may have on my investment.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

darnname,

what the hell is imminent domain

Well, the actual correct term is eminent domain. My miss. So much for auto-complete. Regardless, it's defined simply as the power of the state, municipality, or private person or corporation to take private property in exchange for fair and just compensation when public demand clearly requires the use of said property.

In the case of daycare centers in a society that that long since stopped being a throwback to patriarchal economic models where the wife stayed home as the child-rearer and the husband worked as the breadwinner, the simple reality is that modern Information Age families can scarcely survive on a single income. Women have to work now too, and someone has to help take care of the kids. Enter the daycare center.

No amount of wistful pining for the "good old days" will change this. Japan needs more people working to pay into a social welfare system that society – especially retirees and soon-to-be-retirees demand. Since there aren't enough able bodied men to fill that role, it's going to have be women. And if the population is ever going to simply break even -- never mind grow, for Pete's sake -- then the families where women now have to work to simultaneously bolster the economy and make ends meet at home will need a better social support structure to allow them to work and have children at the same time.

Again, pontificating about the virtues of children being raised in the home by mom or immediate family members is entirely moot given how the current real world actually functions. Honestly, I just want to slap the stupid out of people who still keep going on and on about how “mom should stay home and raise the kids,” as if it were really an option anymore when the choice becomes one of whether or not the mortgage can be paid and food can be put on the table.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't think I have ever read any that stupid before. Those old residents ARE the parasites who are blocking the way to future generations and in many ways than one. Someday, someone will have to tell them that we shove any concept of old people-overfriendly society where the sun doesn't shine because that's the natural course of things.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japanese people who hate kids' noise coming from the day care centers should move to the countryside. They can maybe move and live in Fukushima, it is so quiet there now.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Japanese people who hate kids' noise coming from the day care centers should move to the countryside. They can maybe move and live in Fukushima, it is so quiet there now."

The same could be said for those demanding daycares. Just saying. Why should any homeowners be told "if you don't like it, then you should leave". No, no landowners should ever be forcibly displaced, including by various forms of bullying, such as here in this thread.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

All these old people complaining need to be silenced. This is a progressing country, the sound of children means the sound of growth. These old people were once little children playing and making noise, and the people back then put up with their noise....so they can do the bloody same, or move out of Tokyo.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Just saying. Why should any homeowners be told "if you don't like it, then you should leave""

Because they live in areas where basically there has never been any no zoning. No doubt, they are happy when that situation benefited them and served their own interests, but now they are learning that it also has drawbacks. "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I suggest that residents should excuse noisy kids to some extent. Please remember our childhood. Probably, we were noisy like the kids. Residents living around parks for children had been excusing our noisiness. In addition, residents were another educator. They always willingly scolded us when we were too noisy beyond a level which can be condoned. Through such so-operation of residents, we could grow up adults who have good morality. Compared to countryside, People in Tokyo don’t concern about others. However, children should be raised by neighbors as well as family. An co-operative attitude to nurturing should be needed in modern Japanese society like it twenty years ago.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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