The masked wrestler rights movement was dealt a blow on March 11 when a wrestler-turned-municipal-legislator, Skull Reaper A-ji, was refused entry to a scheduled city council session as long as he was wearing his mask.
When interviewed by reporters、 Councilman Skull Reaper, who was elected last month, expressed regret over the matter saying, “Frustrating. If I take my mask off, I’m an entirely different person. I will not take it off.”
The move to bar the wrestling mask – a traditional feature of Mexican lucha libre wrestling embraced by many pro wrestlers in Japan – was taken on March 6 as the council overwhelmingly voted that it violates a rule that “a person entering the floor shall not wear articles such as a hat or cane.”
Afterwards, they continuously tried to persuade Councilman Skull Reaper not to wear the mask right up until the session on the 11th. However, he had no intention of doing so and when he entered the floor with his mask, he was restrained.
Still, the 44-year-old Skull Reaper shows no signs of tapping out on the issue and will continue to challenge the decision.
This move may be seen as a step backwards for masked wrestlers serving in office.
In Super Delfin’s election to Osaka city council a few months ago, he was granted the right to wear his mask while serving the public, and the true pioneer of masked wrestler politicians, The Great Sasuke, was also allowed to wear his mask in 2003.
Source: Nikkan Sports
Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- “Heavy Metal Idols” Perform for Audience of One -- More Japanese Youth Wearing Surgical Masks to Hide Their Face -- Orphanage Receives Mystery Donation from Tiger Mask© RocketNews24
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Is that true? You can't bring a cane to the floor? What if you really need a cane?
Anyway, watching masked wrestlers is so boring. No personality.
Typical of stupid politicians. They ruled: "a person entering the floor shall not wear articles such as a hat or cane.” Suppose a person is battling such an illness as cancer and wishes to wear a hat to cover up a head that has been made bald by chemotherapy. Is he/she ousted? And, as Bryan Villados pointed out above, suppose a person needs a cane to get around, then this person is barred from the floor? The Great Sasuke & Super Delfin were allowed to wear their masks ... and surely nothing bad came about from this or else we would have heard about it via the press.
Surely Skull Reaper was elected with his mask on. That's what the voters wanted, and that's what they got. Good grief, let him wear it ... it's not going to hurt anyone.
The mask might not hurt anyone, but he might. Well, I hope so, in session.
It's just a stupid gimmick, and if he wants to be taken seriously as himself--not his wrestling character--he should take it off. That, or he should start drop-kicking members of parliament and hitting them with chairs. Hmmm... the latter might be more effective.
What did I just read? The Sunday Comics?
While you may think so, some of these guys are pretty decent politicians it seems and while their mask gave them notoriety, they should be able to continue in the character they were elected. Freedom of choice.
And if the City Council creates a rule banning the masks, he has every right to challenge it, or quit too.
This is certainly an interesting way to get young ones interested in city politics. I agree with the council members as it can be considered a matter of safety and identification unless there is a way to confirm his identity before the council comes to session. Councilmen Skull Reaper, I like the sound of that.
Doesn't the councilman realize there is a difference between a professional wrestling bout and a city council? One is a circus designed to promote the participants, where the moves are choreographed, and the outcomes predetermined. The other is two guys fighting.
Since most politics seems pretty bloodless and remote from human feeling, I think the mask should stay and let's see what he has to say! After all, constituents voted for him. Silly, but admirable. Go for the right to be different.
I do not understand why people that disagree with a wrestler tryng to wear a mask into government meetings are getting voted down. The government is a professional and serious thing, for him to wear his mask is the same as a stripper wearing stripper clothes....it is her/his profession. He has to grow up and realize government and wrestling are not the same.
I do not want a weirdo that wears a mask in charge of my future... come on mate be serious!
If this man needs a mask to have the courage that is necessary to enter politics, he should resign.
All polititians wear masks !
Yubaru: "While you may think so, some of these guys are pretty decent politicians it seems and while their mask gave them notoriety, they should be able to continue in the character they were elected. Freedom of choice."
I never said they were not decent politicians -- I said they are not both professional wrestler and politician at the same time. It's a gimmick, and that's all. It gets him more attention for looking like an ass.
Can people vote while wearing masks? Of course not. That's my litmus test.
As much as I hate that stupid pro wrestling I must give my consent to him wearing a mask, if a woman can wear make up in chambers to change her appearance then all is fair, there is no issue of exposure or modesty so what's the problem. I don't know how politicians keep a strait face any way, but that's another matter.
No silly mask in parliament. Period.
Come on, everyone knows Professional City Council Sessions are fake.
The voters elected a masked man. Good enough for them, good enough for the council. It's silly, but let him wear his mask.
In the British House of Parliment the Whigs wore, as a symbol of thier party, wigs, and for generations no one commotion was ever made of the "Men in Wigs". The right for the Masked Wrestlers to wear a symbol of who they were elected as, is no different than having the Whigs enter the House without their wigs. If the Masked Wrestlers joined the Whigs; they would be the "Masked Men in Whigs" Party.
Presumably this comment in the article was made 'tongue in cheek' or is it common in Japan to have masked wrestler legislators?
Let him wear it. Summer is coming. Then turn off the air conditioning to save energy. Let this childish gimmick run its course.
Does this mean he can't bring a steel chair to these City Council Sessions too? How will anything get resolved?
What a tool.
Participating in an elective body as a representative in a democracy is supposed to be open, by definition.
No valid reason for this clown to hide his identity, or face, for that matter, when serving in that capacity.
He campaigned as, and was elected as, Skull Reaper Eiji. The people knew what they wanted, and they voted for it.
albaleoMar. 17, 2013 - 06:32PM JST