politics

LDP member admits making sexist jeers against Tokyo assemblywoman

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offered to resign? why not do the honorable thing and just resign?

i hope this is a tipping point for women in japan. they have a lot more power than they think.

27 ( +31 / -4 )

I think personally the people like Suga and Yoshiwara who feigned ignorance should resign, too. Nothing worse than trying to save face when it is so obvious from get go.

18 ( +20 / -2 )

GET RID OF HIM! Time to set an example.

22 ( +23 / -1 )

He is an out of date pig, he and all of his kind should be at home fondeling themselves not being a decision maker over other peoples lives.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He's a step up, actually several steps up, from the person or people who didn't admit doing it. I would accept his resignation anyway.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

Offered??? No, resign. Period. And yes, those who feigned ignorance should resign as well. Demand this women of Japan, demand this! Please!!

Now who is the other coward?

51? Better to get rid of him now than deal with 20 more years of his abuse and thoughts.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

Offered to resign? You don't offer, you resign and GTFO

11 ( +14 / -3 )

He stepped up and said he made the first "You should hurry up and get married" comment. He said the other comments weren't him. He has apologized and done a nice deep bow to Assembly Member Shiomura, (photo below). And apparently he offered to resign. Before I demand his resignation, I'd like to know if Ms. Shiomura felt his apology was genuine and sincere. (Did he try to apologize to her personally in advance of the press conference?)

http://www.jiji.com/jc/p_archives?id=20140623145205-0017418935&rel=j&g=pho&relid=1_1

And I want to hear from the rat bastard who shouted, "What? Can't you get pregnant?" to a person proposing more support for infertility treatment.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

...AAAAnnnndddd... where is the other one (at least there was another one) ? I heard three voices when I watched the news on tv.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

It should be pointed out that earlier this week... "私じゃないですよ" he said it wasn't him.

http://my.shadowcity.jp/2014/06/post-5093.html

Now, let's see how long it takes for the other person to 'fess up. If it was or if it wasn't him might be hard to identify, but I'd love to see a full investigation. I'd hate for him to be a scape goat.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

He stepped up and said he made the first "You should hurry up and get married" comment.

How had he "stepped up"? He has waited days and is only doing so because of the outcry - or perhaps he was pushed to. There is ZERO honor in him admitting it was him. He just knows that since he's admitted it, he might be spared. He shouldn't offer, he should resign. Period. Knowing the LDP, he'll be promoted.

17 ( +21 / -4 )

No honor, no pride, no personal integrity, no use to his electorate. A waist of time old man.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

I agree with Vincehwr wholeheartedly. LDP Secretary-General Osamu Yoshiwara is a whole special breed of sexist asshat on his own. He pretended to have not heard anything. Which suggests one of two things. He suffers from a dibilitating hearing loss that might very make him unsuitable for LDP leadership without seeking medical attention. Or he's a lying ass. I'm betting on the latter.

Meanwhile, Akihiro Suzuki needs to man up and a) rat out the other jerks who were not only contributing to the heckling, but were also laughing , and b) just resign outright. None of this faux-noble "offering" to resign BS. Have the intestinal fortitude to take your lumps for being an ass and just resign. Although, I'll bet you dollars to donuts Suzuki isn't even the guy who said those things. He's merely the obligatory Japanese sacrificial lamb typically pushed to the fore whenever someone higher up puts his foot in his mouth.

What pisses me off to no end about this is how infantile and cowardly the lot of these so-called political leaders are. Brave enough to jeer another council member during an official gathering at the seat of political power in the wealthiest prefecture in Japan, but not brave enough to stand with conviction behind their snide remarks, choosing instead to snicker and titter amongst themselves like 9-year-olds.

As pointed out in another article here at JT, when confronted about the prepubescent behavior, LDP members responded with unforgettable gems like, "What’s your proof that one of our members said it?” and “Since it wasn’t an official speech in the assembly, there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Classy, boys. Classy.

21 ( +23 / -2 )

the only heckling I condone is that done to GW Bush JR. the worst president in US history. Heckle away.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

meinjapanJUN. 23, 2014 - 04:37PM JST

It should be pointed out that earlier this week... "私じゃないですよ" he said it wasn't him.

http://my.shadowcity.jp/2014/06/post-5093.html

Thank you, meinjapan! The guy is a liar. No denying it. According to Wikipedia, the national newspapers also busted him for lifting his "reports" about his trips to the US directly from Wikipedia. (Plagarist / Waster of of Taxes). And to top it all off, he is one of those Ishihara supporters who encouraged buying the Senkakus and was among 10 idiots who landed a fishing boat there just to add fuel to the fire.

I'd like him to be a real old school Japanese man and get out his sword.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Offer to resign or resign? Neither - this guy should have been FIRED.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

So so so happy with an interview with the Wall Street Journal. No where to hide once it "gets out."

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Japan is a major centre for discrimination against women in Asia. The male dominated parliament here has little impetus to rule out anti discriminatory bias against women-it is thus promoted by inaction and by sexist remarks as per this article......

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Yoshihara said that only Suzuki had admitted to making the remarks and that he had offered to resign his post.

We don't want you to resign, we want you to be fired and banned access to any political responsibility for ever. We wan you to be politically dead, Japan is going nowhere with monkeys like you.

Just admit that you and the others LDP old boys are totally stupid and that you are not up to the job, call your friend Abe and say to put the country in the hands of Ayaka Shiomura. She seems totally capable and reasonable, Japan may have a better chance with her.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

daito

:we want you to be fired and banned access to any political responsibility for ever

Yes ! And fined, heavily for verbal assault based gender discrimination ....... This is looking VERY VERY bad for Abe on the Intern'l scene - where he has been trying to prove his agenda is pro -human rights- pro- gender equity . . .THIS is pulling his credibility down to a big fat "0"

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Who are the other cowards?

Come forward, otherwise we will circulate internationally again on facebook and twitter.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

She seems totally capable and reasonable, Japan may have a better chance with her.

This is where I am going to disagree with you. If she cries as this and her mind "goes blank" with jeers, she is in no form to be leading the country. Add in her party... No thanks. If you want a woman, get Renho Murata.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

What an attrictive man, I bet his mother is really proud of him, women should flock to him as he can inseminate at will producing a whole generation of sexiest pigs which Japan needs for it's upbeat future?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Isn't there an old Japanese tradition of using a short bladed sword when one disgraces oneself?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@tmarie

This is of course a matter of personal judgement. My point is that it can't be worse than what Japan has now or had for the last 50 years. And frankly she's got some real charisma, she is smart and modern, she has real ideas from what I could see.

She is still a novice sure, but I don't think we can really blame her for expressing some emotion while being insulted in public. And actually she could make it well until the end of her speech.

Now anyway, her or Renho Murata, fine. I guess we agree that a chance should be given to women in Japan, a lot of them deserve it.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

My point is that it can't be worse than what Japan has now or had for the last 50 years.

I don't want no worse though. I want better!

She's also rejected the "apology". She's moving up in my books.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I wish he gets fired but he is an elected assemblyman. Either by recall election against him or his resignation that will need his offering resignation, acceptance by a council -emergency session or committee which usually accept resignation. If he offered his resignation to council ( do any of you know?), it is a matter of time he will be vanished from Tokyo assembly scene. When this occurs, emergency session to appoint a fill-up assembly man, Be patience. It seems LDP are not neglecting to get culprits out open. I'd bet more LDP assemblymen will be forced to confess. In this kind cases, there will be always moles. Their voices - Voice analyzers exist just like finger print analyzers and video analyzers. Were they caught on CamCoders?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Following was before this guy appeared. Notice Assembly Chair and Assembly LDP secretary genetal defying National LDP Secretary general.

During a TV program aired June 21, Shigeru Ishiba, the party's secretary-general, made clear the LDP regarded their behavior as shameful. He said "it is "important:" for the assemblymen to promptly apologize. "If they are the members of our party, the party must issue an apology," he said. But the assembly president, Toshiaki Yoshino of the LDP, refused Shiomura's request, saying it is technically difficult to determine who was responsible. Osamu Yoshiwara, secretary-general of the LDP members' group in the assembly, said it had started questioning members on June 19 to find out who was behind the incident. But no one has yet come forward, he said. "As I didn't actually hear the taunts myself, it is difficult for our group to decide how to deal with the situation," he said. But a senior member of LDP's assembly group said, "If our secretary-general has called on the perpetrators to come forward, they must do so and apologize if they are really the members of our group." "Tokyo aspires to develop into the worl'’s best city before the 2020 Olympic Games," she said. "I hope the incident will serve as a good wake-up call for the entire assembly to change for the better."

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Wish I could vote away such people. What an idiot. Jiminto still contains a lot of bad apples.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

If she cries as this and her mind "goes blank" with jeers, she is in no form to be leading the country.

Apparently it was her very first time up on the podium, and they must have known it. What a pack of tossers.

Oh well, if any good comes of this, it's that I'm having fun informing my Japanese friends and students that I've learned a new word: ヤジ

7 ( +9 / -2 )

He clearly did wrong as an assembly man and he is showing himself to be a person out of character by further excusing his mistake. He should be a man and own up to his wrongdoing, likewise others who had taunted her. A nation is strong only as it's leaders.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Why do I sense ulterior political motives in this story? Politicians heckle and get heckled all the time...did this become news because the jeers were so sexist, and directed at a woman from men? Or because someone wants to shuffle things around in the LDP?

Granted, the jeering folks were behaving like frat boys and not taking Shiomura seriously at all...perhaps they were thinking as an unmarried woman with no children, she isn't qualified to talk about the experience of raising children in Japan. They expressed that though in most disrespectful and unprofessional terms.

Concerning the last paragraph in the article, more women in the workforce is great, but it is the exact thing you DON'T want to do if you want to increase the birth rate, which Abe says he also wants to do. To increase the birth rate you've got to make it easier for both men and women to be at home with their families. With so many absent fathers due to long work hours, and the expense of raising children according to the socially accepted standard (putting them in the best private schools etc), no wonder the birth rate is below replacement.

-13 ( +1 / -14 )

This is just an act to hopefully stop the opposition from continuing with their plans of doing a voice analysis and locating the true culprit.

This guy is falling on his sword for the LDP and probably getting compensated very well for it in the process too.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

If Shiomura plays her cards right, she can turn this into a positive, rallying men and women alike behind her cause to improve conditions for working women.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

“I made the comment out of my feeling that I would like her to get married soon, as we see the issue of a shrinking population and an increasing number of women not marrying until late,” Suzuki told a hastily-arranged press conference.

“It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to,” said Suzuki, himself married with three children.

Is there a spin doctor in the house?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

He denied heckling, now admits it, so we are supposed to accept his apology? I think not. If he doesn't resign he should be sacked. And what about the other sexist hecklers who shouted abuse? Are these being tracked down?

5 ( +8 / -3 )

I wonder what the ultra rightist so-called Patriotic Wives think about all of this. Really, what is worse: foreigners voting, women keeping their maiden names after marriage and Koreans and Chinese not letting Japan forget its war crimes or typical LDP sexist creeps like Suzuki keeping Japanese women down?

8 ( +8 / -0 )

One thing I have liked about this whole episode is how powerful the imagery was. You had Shiomura doing what she was supposed to do - attempting to engage in reasoned debate on a policy of public importance. Then you have the bullies in the audience shouting abuse behind a cloak of anonymity to the point of making her cry.

The video of their words and the obvious ill-will behind them could not have elicited any reaction other than revulsion. I`m so glad they got it on tape so clearly, I bet this stuff happens to female politicians all the time but its only when the whole world can see it laid out like that when you actually get satisfaction. I hope this guy loses his seat and that the rest of these jackasses get outed too.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Good. let ANY man ANYwhere who 'thinks' he is better than ANY woman simply because of his sex, have a think. Yoiu are NOT.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It goes without saying that most Juminto lawmakers are dinosaurs with the class, honor and dignity you would associate with such creatures and the whole party needs to be purged and transformed from the 18 century to the 21st. I watched her speech, the tearing up afterwards as well as the apology she received all three I find troubling. I know this was her first speech but to smile at the first comment then tremble through the rest seems like the last reaction a person in a leadership position should muster and I would hope most voters would expect a fire to light up inside her and for her to take those hecklers to task clawing up one side of them and down the other with fire spewing from her lips. She was as timed as a high school girl and showed no willingness or ability to turn the tables on these LDP which should be expected of any elected office holder.

The fact that such inept people are elected to office, and that includes Akihiro Suzuki and his cohorts, LDP Secretary-General Osamu Yoshiwara and the numerous others who choose to hide in the shadows, sewer is more like it, really calls into question the state of Japanese democracy and whether the people are truly being represented by their elected officials. The sad fact is the whole lot are just elected for their blood lines, good looks or fame and what more can you expect when those are your three choices.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Alrighty then, Mr. Akihiro Suzuki manned up and admitted he was one of the voices and offered his apology, now will the other voice please stand up.

Will all sides act nice or will Ms. Ayaka Shiomura try to milk this debacle for all it is worth?

If she is a savvy she will.

Now, I have a question for those who are calling for Mr. Suga and Mr. Yoshiwara to step down.

Why?

Now, try and put your politics aside (we all know where they lay) try and make a reasonable or rational point. Don't just say, "Because they should have known".

Please if members of President Obama's administration had to step down because of what someone in their party had said or done he would be very lonely.

So, try and make a reasonable point.

VincehwrJun. 23, 2014 - 03:52PM JST I think personally the people like Suga and Yoshiwara who feigned ignorance should resign, too. Nothing worse than trying to save face when it is so obvious from get go.

Come on man, on a good day you want Mr. Suga and Mr. Yoshiwara to resign because you don't like their politics.

tmarieJun. 23, 2014 - 04:04PM JST Offered??? No, resign. Period. And yes, those who feigned ignorance should resign as well. Demand this women of Japan, demand this! Please!!

Exactly tmarie, the folks that need to speak out are the voters of Japan. If they feel as offended as the folks here, well then Mr. Akihiro Suzuki will find himself unemployed.

-14 ( +2 / -16 )

"Men" like him repulse women and shame their families. No sensible woman woman would want children if they knew there was any chance they might be morally bankrupt clowns like these assemblymen. They contribute directly to the problem they want to solve (though working and other conditions certainly don't help).

7 ( +7 / -0 )

@Perfect, read up on what a Japanese smile, 'laugh' such as that which you observed, means in Japanese culture.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

YongYang

@Perfect, read up on what a Japanese smile, 'laugh' such as that which you observed, means in Japanese culture.

Lets be honest here because her reaction as you put it, Japanese smile, 'laugh' such as that which you observed, was out of shear panic and total dismay and the only thought going through her mind at the time was to get through her speech without having a panic attack, no more, no less.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Not only he should quit the LDP, he should quit his post, too!!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

“I made the comment out of my feeling that I would like her to get married soon, as we see the issue of a shrinking population and an increasing number of women not marrying until late,” Suzuki told a hastily-arranged press conference.

He was so eager for her to rush out and find a partner and make a baby, he could care less about the thousands/millions of other women that could be affected if she could properly perform her job?

It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to, said Suzuki, himself married with three children.

No mention on the male role in all of this getting married and baby making business? The actual part that requires a women's anatomy is very important, but the raising, supporting of children all have just as much to do with men. Whether it is dads helping out at home or bringing home the bacon or lawmakers (because they are mostly men here) making better facilities so woman can work to be able to help and/or support their family. People often blame women wanting careers as the reason for this decrease, but many can see that the women that want to work are the key to all of this. Many men are also putting off marriage, because they feel the pressure to be the sole provider (and many women do expect this), and they money just isn't there for them to do so.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Despite the apparent presence of numerous reporters, the story initially only appeared in two liberal-leaning newspapers last Thursday,

This, IMO, is the saddest part of this story, and says the most about Japan, and how far it has to come as a society. There is no real existence of a "Fourth Estate" in Japan, and, until there is, real change will never happen.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

It wasn't that bad, was it?

I think lawmakers (male and female) should expect some heckling.

It was a bit sexist I suppose but hardly the crime of the century.

As someone indicated above, women lawmakers should toughen up and throw it back... bai-gaeshi and all that.. don't start tearing up like a JHS student.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Suzuki repeatedly denied making the stupid comments before finally admitting them, so he should resign. At least he finally admitted his words and apologized, unlike some others.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Toshiko,

If he offered his resignation to council ( do any of you know?), it is a matter of time he will be vanished from Tokyo assembly scene. When this occurs, emergency session to appoint a fill-up assembly man, Be patience.

You shouldn't have to be patient. You're a Japanese citizen, for crying out loud. You're a Japanese citizen who pays taxes that go directly to these jerks' salaries as council members. You shouldn't have to wait for a damned thing. You should be demanding change and accountability from these sexist jerks.

French philosopher and writer Joseph de Maistre observed, quite famously, that, "Every nation gets the government it deserves." If Japanese can't find some way to motivate themselves to stand up to the LDP and root out this kind of corrosive sexism, then Japan deserves all the bad things that will come from doing absolutely nothing and being "patient."

Meanwhile, the LDP is doing nothing more than damage control. They don't fell sorry for what was said at all, judging by how many members thought it was appropriate to laugh out loud at Ms. Shiomura's public humiliation. Right now, the LDP believes that if they force a few minor members to sacrifice themselves for the team, then the public will quiet down and the core membership of the LDP can continue with its outdated, misogynistic policies.

And judging by your "be patient" comment, they'd be absolutely right.

Honestly, how much more of this garbage is Japan -- are you -- really willing to put up with?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

I think lawmakers (male and female) should expect some heckling. Expect some heckllng? Yes, but not this kind. Sexist heckling has no place in that place.

Japanese male politicians becomes a laughing stock in the civilized world. He waited how many days to come forward. Apparently his colleagues found out that the pressure from abroad is too great to bear. So they force him to come forward. The other guilty members are still hiding behind him. Come on, be a MAN. Come forward and resign.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to," said Suzuki

What the hell kind of apology is this backhanded trash?! "...those who can't get married...."?!? AAAARGH!!!

6 ( +8 / -2 )

As appalled as I am about all of this, I also find it interesting that so many people are in such an uproar because frankly I've observed similar situations, just in the rooms of izakaya etc away from any public responsibility. Someone will say something offensive, everyone will laugh nervously, and then someone will change the subject without addressing the comment. Don't get me wrong I'm not sure I could've handled the situation any better myself, but it just seems strange that so many Japanese people are getting so upset when this part of thing is really not that uncommon. Is it a matter of how we look as a society, especially towards other countries?? Tatemae??

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to," said Suzuki

What the hell kind of apology is this backhanded trash?! "...those who can't get married...."?!? AAAARGH!!!

I second that 'AAAARGH'

Obviously he isn't sorry for anything more than the international news picking up the story, and this was the only thing that (might be believed to be an explanation) someone like him could stomach saying.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Wow, I just saw on the news of the guy apologizing to her, but it looked so unapologetic. Looks like he's doing it because of the media rather that actually being sorry. Then as he walks away, he laughs. Reminds me of a high school kid. Definitely not taking it serious. Good luck to the women in Japan because they're definitely gonna need it!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@LFRAgain: Don;t get mad at me. I just wrote what I found. I don't pay Tokyo tax but I can write comments on Tokyo here like other comment writers.

Yoshino -------- Tohyo Assembly President (a LDP member) Yoshiwara ---- Tokyo Assembly LDP Secretary General They are Tokyo Assembly members.
0 ( +2 / -2 )

Suzuki you the type of men who can only pick on women. You don't have the balls to pick on other men. You should quit right now. Don't wait to be asked, just quit now and do the right thing, after all aren't you Japanese?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

the guy should resign or get fired but if the woman wants to be in politics, she should not be crying!! give me a break.. how can she lead if she crys because someone said something rude. That's politics!

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Two points to make:

a. The press in Japan, which is supposed to be the Fourth Estate, failed to function as credible watchdog in this outrageous incident. That would raise profound questions on Japan’s democracy, equality and justice.

b. Once again, Japan as a whole shows impotence to chasten politician’s wrongdoings from Taro Aso’s infamous Nazi comparison statement to Akihiro Suzuki’s sexist heckling. Here is the reality: Japanese politicians know that as long as they give an apology or retract, everything is okay. Now, If Japan tolerances those unacceptable behaviors then similar incidents will reoccur, just matter of time. You can mark my words on this.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Me again with a PS. Suzuki, are you married? If so, I want to meet your wife to see what kind of woman is married to you. I bet you mother was delighted with your work today. It was so constructive, wasn't it? As for your wife, I hope the neighborhood wives will shun her because of your action; maybe she will divorce you? Wishing you all the bad luck in the future, if any.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to,"...

He STILL doesn't get... it's not inconsiderate just to "those who cannot get married even if they wish to...", but also those who CHOOSE not to get married.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I really hope that not another woman will ever vote for A. Suzuki again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

JoeBigs JUN. 23, 2014 - 08:36PM JST Come on man, on a good day you want Mr. Suga and Mr. Yoshiwara to resign because you don't like their politics.

The fact that they (or LDP) have the galls to believe that they represent the Japanese disgusts me when all they do is weasel out of crisis. The dishonoured samurai used to be willing to do seppuku to protect the name, warp to 2014, bowing and apology will do to fix everything in good grace. If the camera was not rolling, LDP bigots would be all doing hi-fives at the time of the remarks.

It's also rather shocking, quite a few number of people fails to realise not all people are going to take the abuse the same way you can. People doesn't deserve to utter a word "peace" if they don't possess a basic empathy, especially, the LDP. Actually, the word lost its meaning nowadays.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@JFRAgain: Don't get mad at me. I am just pasting what I found about Suzuki apology and he is married with 3 children

.''In a case that has cast a harsh spotlight on the attitudes of many of the older men who occupy senior positions in Japanese public life, 51-year-old Akihiro Suzuki said he had yelled, "Why don't you get married?" at the opposition assemblywoman.

The episode last Wednesday has undermined Abe's repeated appeals for Japan to boost the role of its underemployed women and encourage them into more senior positions. Suzuki had previously repeatedly denied shouting the taunt.

"I made the comment out of my feeling that I would like her to get married soon, as we see the issue of a shrinking population and an increasing number of women not marrying until late," Suzuki told a press conference.

"It was such an inconsiderate remark to those who cannot get married even if they wish to," said Suzuki, who is married with three children

He resigned from LDP but he intends to stay in Tokyo Assembly.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

If crying does not qualify to be a politician, no one will be qualified. Japanese people, including politicians cry often at funeral, at meetings, Yasujuni visit, etc. Pretending or not, they cry.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

This woman is anything but weak. It is she who is still in office, it is she who hasn't accepted the apology, it is she who is continuing in her cause to revail all those who subjected her to an attempted public / professional humilation --which she refused to be succumb to and finished her address-- it is she who is doing interviews with Thw Wall street Journal and other international media outlets, it is SHE who is not weak but strong, determined and gaining experience at being at the very center of The Circus. Nothing weak about this woman what so ever. To stick out and take this scoiety on takes an enromous reservoir of courage, determination and strength. In a society that only in 1999 brought the establishment of the FLGE, that until that point saw a state backed establishment of ryōsai kenbo... She's one tough cookie. THAT is what 'gives' becuase her laugh and tears after finishing were not a result of weakness.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Wow what a jerk!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It's offensive to more than just those who can't get married. He wouldn't EVER say that to an assembly man.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Shiomura-san was taken off guard this time around. But next time I think she will be more prepared. No one goes into any profession totally prepared to handle every emergent situation. And in politics, as in anything else, finesse only comes with experience and practice. Learning is a process. Ms. Shiomura has now learned the lesson that it's not enough for a politician to have the courage to present an unpopular viewpoint; the trick is to anticipate opposition and be prepared to defend your viewpoint in a persuasive way using as appropriate: anecdotes, stories, examples,quotes, fiery rhetoric, and even poetry and humor. If Ms. Shiomura had a mentor (male or female) , the mentor could have warned her what to expect and how to handle herself. That's how the old boys network works. Ms. Shiomura now knows better than anyone else that she'll need to "toughen up" if she is to become an effective politician.

Ms. Shiomura can use this moment to get the undivided attention of the Assembly and the media (all eyes will be on her). Now is the time to re-state her views on the need for quality daycare for working families and a concrete proposal for making it happen. And the devil is in the details. Who should finance and build daycare centers? Government, corporations, non-profits, private providers? Should the government, corporations, or the individual families be responsible for paying for daycare? Should there be some kind of partnership? Some temporary seed money? Should there be a gov't subsidy based on family income level? Some people who oppose daycare are not against women working per se, they just don't want to subsidize daycare for other families. And finally, how can Japan encourage more women to advance in their careers and at the same time meet the other goal to increase the birthrate?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Toshiko,

@LFRAgain: Don;t get mad at me.

I'm not angry at you. I'm frustrated with your attitude of indifference and "Let's wait and see if this problem fixes itself." This is the attitude and approach most Japanese apply to difficult problems. Yet, you all actu surprised when the economy continues to stall, when the population continues to fall, and when China and South Korea continue to make political demands of Japan based on everyone's mutual history. "Be Patient", as you stated, clearly doesn't work to anyone's benefit in Japan except the career politicians of the LDP. Again, I'm not angry with you. I'm just painfully, sadly frustrated at the Japanese population's acute lack of interest in its own government.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@LFRAgain: What are you suggesting me to do? I don't live in Tokyo.

what

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Why did Ayaka Shiomura allow herself to be used in Akihiro Suzuki's hastily arranged press conference is beyond me! More importantly why did the leadership of her party allow it as they must have know what the LDP was up to. What compelled her to give credibility to his obviously insincere attempt at an apology by receiving it in-person. She should have let him go out in front of the press all by his lonesome self and watched it all unfold on the telly. Please realize that I'm completely appalled by what members of the LDP have done and continue to do the assemblywoman, for some of you assembly-person, Ayaka Shiomura and can empathize with her situation but sadly she is in the wrong profession and clearly out of her league.

We all know that LDP Secretary-General Osamu Yoshiwara and his cronies thought it would take a lot of the attention away from Suzuki, which it did. If Suzuki really sought to make a sincere apology and show atonement he would have gone out by himself and wouldn't have finished off his apology by justifying it, what a tool.

Some of you may think Ayaka Shiomura showed great strength and determination throughout this ordeal but a lot of us don't see it that way. Japanese political parties are notorious for finding puppets with a cute exterior and can speak the words, Hai Sensei はい先生 and this is simply a fact. Like my father would say to my younger sister when we were kids, "if you want to play with the boys you'd better grow some thicker skin". Unfortunately politics is a dirty business and the term "gentlemen" (“A person who does not what he wants to do, but what he should do.”) no longer applies and you'd better be able to show the ability to handle all situations with poise and a quick tongue or your opponents will exploit your perceived weakness to their advantage, which is exactly what the LDP and Suzuki are trying to do.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

@LFRAgain: I wrote the procedure of Assembly. Whether we like or not, we peers can not change as we are comment writers. Well, in some other countries, some people become too impatient that they break laws to throw this kind mqan away, But not in Japan. I see you are also criticizing Japanese are not acting. Well, Japanese are not law breaking people. Many people want him to be fired and so I wrote procedure.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Toshiko,

No one is advocating that you break any laws. What I am advocating, however, is that you use the laws that are already available to you to effect change. I cannot effect change because I am not a Japanese citizen. You, however, are a Japanese citizen, and as such, it becomes your duty to ensure that your government remain uncorrupt.

How do you do this? By following your own laws.

The Japanese Constitution, Chapter 3, Articles 14 and 15 (日本国憲法第3章,14条,15条) is the best place to start when asking what it is you can do.

Protest. You may not live in Tokyo, but the LDP is a nationwide political party. Petition your local LDP representatives at the town and prefectural level, demanding accountability. Demand your local LDP representatives make an official public statement denouncing the actions of the LDP members of the Tokyo assembly.

Then spread the word. Encourage your Japanese friends and acquaintances to do the same. When the people of your prefecture, and the next prefecture, and the next prefecture raise their voices in unison against the blatant sexism rampant among the minds of men (and women) in the LDP, then that voice will be heard in Tokyo.

Work to create a movement among the public that forces the LDP to take meaningful action against those responsible for the public sexual harassment of a fellow assembly member. The key word in this sentence is ”meaningful.” Making Akihiro Suzuki take the blame for what happened is not a meaningful response. It’s a trick used often by politicians to avoid making real changes.

Petitioning to have these men removed from the Tokyo assembly is the constitutionally protected right of the Japanese people. It is your right.

And it doesn't involve breaking the law at all.

But it does require time, effort, and conviction in the belief that government is here to serve the people, and not the other way around.

If you and your other Japanese friends, family, and acquaintances don’t have faith in this most basic tenet of your constitutional law, then as I mentioned earlier, the Japanese people will get the government they deserve: A misogynistic, self-serving, corrupt collection of patriarchal asshats who believe women exist solely to serve men and possess no rights at all.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@LFRAgain: That is a nice plan you wrote. But I am not interested in political activity. Time, effort, money, I am just not interested. Beside that, I don;t live in Tokyo. If you live in Tokyo, go ahead. I am not going back to Japan to do something I am not interested. '

Back to Topic,

2013 election --- LDP 59, New Komeito 23 j Communist Party 17 DPJ 15 Unity of Restoration 3 Your Party 4 Indep 1, and some more independent. total 127

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

What party is Shiomura in? I think she is LDP. She should press for a promotion in the party. That would show them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

She is a member of Your Party.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But I am not interested in political activity. . . .Time, effort, money

I rest my case.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@DT: Ayaka is one of 4 Your Party Assemblymen. Your Party is labeled Central Conservative.

LDP 59, NEW KOMEITO 23, j COMMUNIST PARTY 17, DPJ 15, iSHIN NO KAI 5, YOUR PARTY 4, TOKYO SEIKATSUSHA NETWORK 3 INDEPENDENT 1 Tpt 127

.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Perfect, you need to study up about the gender dynamic in Japan.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

YongYang

@Perfect, you need to study up about the gender dynamic in Japan.

Where am I referring to gender in anything I've mentioned? I'm simply stating that the Japanese deserve better lawmakers, both male and female, than are being put forward by the political parties and I believe that the parties intentionally select candidates that lack backbone and will just rubber-stamp any proposals or decisions the leadership make.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tokyo assembly member apologizes for sexist heckling of female colleague

http://edition.cnn.com/2014/06/23/world/asia/japan-sexism-heckling/index.html?hpt=hp_c3

Gone wild to International media, facebook and twitter. This will be non stoppable until other cowards come forward.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

**It wasn't that bad, was it?

I think lawmakers (male and female) should expect some heckling.

It was a bit sexist I suppose but hardly the crime of the century.

As someone indicated above, women lawmakers should toughen up and throw it back... bai-gaeshi and all that.. don't start tearing up like a JHS student.**

Yes, it was. One is either part of the problem or part of the solution. Guess which you are by even suggesting it "wasn't that bad". A bit sexist? Good lord. The number of men on JT who wouldn't last long in an office "home" must be miles long.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

YongYang's correct. Simply dismissing Ms. Shiomura as a legitimate elected representative because she isn't made of what you would determine to be sterner stuff sort of discounts and invalidates centuries of traditionally patriarchal attitudes in Japan and the institutionalization of policies, mores, and beliefs that place women firmly in the category of social inferior in Japan. From being the tea server at work to being barred from certain company positions -- and the salaries they command -- simply for being female, women in Japan get a raw deal if they attempt in any way to step out of the roles men, and yes, even some fellow women, decide they are destined to fill.

Those roles, in order or progression, are pretty office centerpiece, girlfriend, wife, mother. There are no other options. Career? Not unless you expect to be paid anywhere from 75% to 50% less than your male peers. Remain single and/or without children while working? Not unless you're prepared to be accused of being the primary cause for a declining population, since there's clearly no way the reasons could be, oh. let's say . . . economic? Choose to represent your fellow female constituents in the Tokyo Assembly? Not unless you're prepared to be told to go home, take off your shoes, and get pregnant, post haste.

Being thick-skinned or not has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the kind of abuse these men hurled at Ms. Shiomura. If this were a case in, say, the U.S. House of Representatives, and a white congressman yelled out, "Go back to the fields, Negro" to a black congressman, we can be reasonably assured that the black congressman would be hard pressed to handle such an outburst with the kind of grace Ms. Shiomura did. In fact, the ensuing fistfight would have made the international news circuit almost immediately.

I also doubt very sincerely we'd be seeing anyone here saying, "That black congressman just has to learn to take an insult or two." The situation with Ms. Shiomura is no different from the theoretical scenario I presented. Based on little more than her gender, Ms. Shiomura was effectively told that she possesses no value to society or as a legislator beyond an expected role as a breeding machine. That's offensive and inexcusable in any modern society, and deserving of the most unequivocal condemnation that society's responsible adults can muster.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Well said!!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

LFRAgain

you have missed the point as well. You imply I think what was said to her was not extremely indecent, horrible and totally out of line but I have clearly stated what these LDP members as well as the leadership have done to her, the rest of the female assembly members as well as all women across Japan is nothing less than disgraceful. I have been consistent in my condemnation of ALL those who have said, smiled at or condoned this intolerable behavior.

My point is simply this. In a democracy candidates are elected to represent the constituents and to stand up and fight for them and if these elected individuals cannot even stand up and fight for themselves, what on earth makes you think they have the courage and fortitude to fight on our behalf? This is the minimum obligation one should expect from their elected leaders.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

If this were a case in, say, the U.S. House of Representatives, and a white congressman yelled out, "Go back to the fields, Negro"to a black congressman...

I think the victim's reaction does matter to some degree.

Imagine if, in your hypothetical example, the African American congressman started crying and blubbering in front of everyone... nobody would want to see that reaction.

On the contrary... the outcome you have suggested (of the perpetrator getting punched out for his racism) would have the great support of any right-thinking person...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@JFRAgain: You tried to instigate me to do something in Tokyo. You complained Japanese attitude of no reaction. Read crime board. It reported about 20 eggs were thrown to Suzuki;s office. It says investigating is on,

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Toshiko,

You tried to instigate me to do something in Tokyo. You complained Japanese attitude of no reaction. Read crime board. It reported about 20 eggs were thrown to Suzuki;s office

I tried to encourage you to do your civic duty. I didn't try to instigate a crime wave by you or anyone else. It seems you believe there are only two options for removing a corrupt public official: 1) do nothing and hope the problem takes care of itself, of 2) break the law by trying to intimidate the official into quiting.

How about simply following the law?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I said it once and I will say it again as I predicted the LDP will come out and bow and say Im sorry but nothing will change years of old feeble minded ways! Nothing will change.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Suzuki was the fall guy for this "incident". His apology is more to get people (voters) to forget, as they often do, and cover for at least a few others. I hope I am wrong, but many women may actually continue to vote for these misogynists.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Perfect, as you've been explained to 'your point' is off the mark.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@LFRAgainJUN. 25, 2014 - 08:34AM JST Toshiko, You tried to instigate me to do something in Tokyo. You complained Japanese attitude of no reaction. Read crime board. It reported about 20 eggs were thrown to Suzuki;s office I tried to encourage you to do your civic duty. I didn't try to instigate a crime wave by you or anyone else. It seems you believe there are only two options for removing a corrupt public official: 1) do nothing and hope the problem takes care of itself, of 2) break the law by trying to intimidate the official into quiting. How about simply following the law?

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How about you do your civic duty in Tokyo? It is illegal for me in Japan to do political activity. I have been a USA resident,

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The childish moron was forced to admit so zero credit for that and his inexcusable excuse is beyond pathetic. Is this an example of what is running Japan? Let this ebicile find out what it is like to work in the real world instead of in his cushy political position which is very far removed from reality. Cheeshhh how long do we have to continue to be governed by idiots!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I have a lot of respect for this politician.

While I don't condone what he said and how he did not admit it initially, at least he took full responsibility and apologized genuinely both in private and public to the woman.

Compare that to how 'apologies' play out in other countries, where people 'apologize' via Twitter and other social network means, using the standard "IF I offended anyone" routine, instead of face to face and with sincerity.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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