politics

Michelle Obama's trip to Japan, Cambodia finalised

53 Comments
By DARLENE SUPERVILLE

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53 Comments
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In my opinion women and girls here in Japan are well educated, the problem is what happens after they get that education. Obama needs to promote equal rights for women here.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Comparing Japan & Cambodia wrt to women yikes Japan!!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Japan's antiquated tradition rules.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

She will be surprised to find Japanese women are well educated, comparing USA women.

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

Lots of well educated people in this world but a lot don't have enough common sense. In fact I see a lot of common people who woud make better leaders.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I feel for the abuses of using other people's money to fund a vacation under the guise of education. The women and young girls in Japan are educated and continue to obtain higher education vs its counterparts. In my opinion there is no need to have this woman come to Japan and only show's disrespect to the people of Japan the only lesson she is teaching is how to abuse power and waste money rather than save and use that power to help others.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

pray tell, what is this disrespect you speak of bjohnson23? She isn't even hereyet!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

And I suppose she thinks American children are better educated then Japanese? My wife(Japanese) and I(American) thought carefully over which country we wanted our daughter educated in. After weighing all the pros and cons of each, we decided to have our daughter raised in Japan. Mrs. Obama apparently not been allowed to visit the "inner" city schools which are over crowded, delappitated, not well funded and the teacher to student ratio is terrible. Many schools can not even afford sports or music programs any more. And I won't even go into the lack of respect a few have for the teachers as well as the lack a few teachers have for students making for an unwilliness to learn by many. The students in Japan have school pride and keep their schools clean and graffiti free. Maybe it would be best if Mrs. Obama practiced what she preaches in her own country instead of getting a few more stamps in her daughters' passports at the expense of the "tax" payer.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

@toshiko

True. But American women who are educated have an real career opportunities. Wheras Japanese women have limited opportunities for advancement in their careers. Why? Oh, cause once they say "I do", they usually become the common housewife fulfilling their subservient role in Japan's society. What a waste. That is what M. Obama will be surprised about.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Man, back off Mrs. Obama. No where in this article does it say she's calling Japan's education inferior to the US or the US is a perfect model to be emulated or is she trying to insult anyone.

She's simply saying education for women is important. She is pushing this program in her own country as well, so it's not singling out Japan or Cambodia. But it's also true Cambodia does have a female child prostitution problem and Japan has the most underutilized female work force amongst developed nations. So, it's not a stretch to talk about women using education to do more with their lives here or in Cambodia.

And I think it's awesome her and Mrs. Abe seem to have a relationship where they respect each other.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

The gov't should not be involved in education

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

The government most definitely should be involved in education.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Why does she travel without her husband? Is it a well-known secret or something no one dares to talk about?

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Hopefully the First Lady will listen to what the Japanese have to say about education and take it back to DC and Chicago with her.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So @bjohnson....where is the abuse. Has any president or his wife NOT travelled the world furthering American interests? At least in this case she is furthering interests that will affect women. What ..you don't have any in your family?

@Richard Wood.....but you have a choice to not get your kid educated in inner city American schools if you go back home. I was educated and learned to read, write and think critically! That led to an education at a public Ivy. Thinking for yourself and challenging allows you to take control of your own learning. I love Japan but not enough of that ids done here. the lack of common sense is scary sometimes.

@ Harvey Pekar.....agree.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

RE: Tokiyo, true she is not in Japan yet, but there is no sense in wasting funds on a vacation under the pretense of education. Ms Obama would do well in visiting US inner city schools rather than outside the US, surely many Americans would rather see their tax money better spent this way than on a wasted trip or abuse of wasting money correct especially with the economy being so tight around the world, surely you are aware of financial strains right Tokiyo? The disrespect by coming to Japan is simple, women here would much rather have someone that is clearly involved in higher education or educator and a vivid success and supporter of women’s rights as a representation of a real US woman for example let's say Angela Jia Kim, self made, rather than Ms Obama who only knows how to shop, spend and be wasteful of taxpayer’s hard earned money far more than any other first lady, with the exception of Ms Jackie but there is no comparison by any means to Jackie. It is true many women in Japan are highly educated but underutilized, however that is a problem that is best handled internally by Japan and over time it will be resolved as most things are. By having Ms Obama in Japan will not make a dent much less a scratch.

To Virgo in response to your comments: The abuse is using the guise of education as means of a vacation trip funded by hard earned money better spent in the US and visiting inner schools where lie real problems for not only women but future hopefuls. Certainly you can agree with this right? I am not saying that Japan like most countries have perfect school systems, but Ms Obama brings nothing of value or addition for Japan, other than showing that it is ok to spend money earned by others as one pleases. If this is your understanding of “furthering interests” then no thank you, being wasteful I’m pretty sure many taxpayers both Japanese and Americans are against it. Simply put the cash cow on both ends have given enough.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I am not a yank but I think Michelle-san coming over this way is for a good cause, good on her!

As for education levels the US is always shouting were #1, blah blah in many aspects of life, but the truth is often a very mixed bag there, sure US has lots of top schools & universities, but it also a an awful lot of really bad, crappy lousy schools, overall at best the US is maybe average at best, certainly nothing special.

Same applies to "best country", "strongest country" etc yanks usually over simplify too much & seem rather blind at how good IT IS in many countries outside the US

Here's hoping Michelle-san has a good, fruitful trip here & Cambodia!

0 ( +5 / -5 )

She's coming over because last time people had a fit that she visited China but not Japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The US is behind at the jr. high and high school levels, but has some of the best universities in the world.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@CH3CHO, that is a question that can only be answered by the first couple's official biographer, the highly esteemed professor and historian Paul Broadwell.

Actually, it is because the first lady's role has increased a lot since the 1770s. Ever hear the name Eleanor Roosevelt?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Hopefully the First Lady will listen to what the Japanese have to say about education and take it back to DC and Chicago with her.

She could help a lot of those who post on JT as well.

Ms Obama would do well in visiting US inner city schools rather than outside the US

Nice of you to suggest this, she does it already. But I guess you think a black woman does not deserve to represent America outside of the inner cities where she is, you may think, among her own?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

virgo: I love Japan but not enough of that ids done here. the lack of common sense is scary sometimes.

Common sense differs from country to country, you and the first lady don't need to be concerned about "the lack of common sense" among Japanese.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Japanese women may get an education but they haven't been able to convince the men to let them do anything other than serve coffee.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The fact that someone outside of your own is highlighting a problem that is world wide, and stopping by to hang out with your first lady is only good on bringing attention to a good cause. I can't believe how so many people look for the negative in everything. Every first lady shops, spends and travels. If educating and raising the level of women gets brought to the table along the way ...(hopefully it will be furthered by others after the fact) that is a good thing. Cambodia always needs help and why not stop for some good will along the way at our allies house? The point is her budget is already set. Your paycheck taxes, and road repair taxes and social security have nothing to do with the first lady travelling nor do you even know how much she reaches in her own pocket.

And Jackie O? Besides being into fashion and being the wife of a womanizer who did have a good heart for the people...who the hell is she? No more or no less than any of the esteemed lady's to serve as the first lady.

If you want see why education for women and raising their chances in life is important why don't you read this...

http://www.cnn.com/2015/03/03/asia/india-rape-comment-outrage/index.html

Education gives people better choices. You should be all for anyone bringing it to the forefront even if its someone you try to hate on.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

College education rates

Japan: female 56.4% male 58.8%, USA: femal 60.6% male 48.7%

Not much difference. No concern necessary from USA.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Common sense differs from country to country, you and the first lady don't need to be concerned about "the lack of common sense" among Japanese.

Actually common sense doesn't really differ from country to country. There is a lack of critical thinking in Japan compared to in the western world. The Japanese education system focuses heavily on memorization rather than thinking critically.

At any rate, if you bothered to read the article,

The first lady said she will visit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s wife, Akie, “who also shares our passion for girls’ education and is eager to partner with us in this work.”

She's not coming to Japan to lecture Ms. Abe, she's coming to Japan to discuss how they can work together to promote education for women. What a terrible thing to discuss. Typical knee jerk reaction.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Actually common sense doesn't really differ from country to country.

Actually in this case Tina was mostly correct. Common sense varies not only from country to country, but even within groups within a country. An example of this is wearing your shoes in the house - for people from some countries, it's common sense not to wear your shoes in the house so as not to track in dirt. In other countries it's common sense to wear your shoes in the house so as to keep your socks/feet clean. And even within these countries, you will find variation between groups within the country on these stances.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The Japanese education system focuses heavily on memorization rather than thinking critically.

You are criticizing Japan everyday here , it is not thinking critically,

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

You are criticizing Japan everyday here , it is not thinking critically,

No, no I do not criticize Japan everyday. I actually like Japan a lot- I chose to live here, but that does not mean I think certain aspects of Japan don't need to be changed. Criticizing a country or an aspect of a country is not bashing a country. Likewise, burying your head in the sand and pretending everything in Japan is perfect doesn't make you a patriot.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

She goes to Japan to promote Women;s education in Japan, not to inspect women;s life after college. She will be here to promote women, So she comes by herself becuase her husband is not a woman.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The US is behind at the jr. high and high school levels, but has some of the best universities in the world.

Money makes a big difference. Local governments don't have money, while many U.S. universities' endowments alone are the size of small countries' economies.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I believe a previous article on this subject on this site mentioned Michelle Obama was coming to participate in a symposium about education for girls worldwide. That doesn't seem like a far-fetched thing for a First Lady to do. Why do some people here seem to think she is coming on vacation, or to lecture the Japanese on what they should be doing?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

She will be also surprised to learm that in Japan, there are many women's colleges in Japan. if she did not know yet. She also will find there are girls JR hs and girls Sr HS, too. Everywhere

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

The US is behind at the jr. high and high school levels, but has some of the best universities in the world

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

But many states do not have such universities, She will be in Japan to promote girls education anyway.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

For everyone with weak reading comprehension skills: It was never said that Japanese girls are poorly educated. She simply goes to Japan because she thinks she has an ally in Abe's wife.

However, this is not too great either. How about revamping the Japanese university system, where most of the universities teach absolutely 0 and make you wonder what people where doing there for 4+ years. That is a real case of lacking education.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It would be better for her to go to India instead of Japan if she really cares about women education and women rights!!!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Japan: female 56.4% male 58.8%, USA: femal 60.6% male 48.7%

Where do you get this numbers from? Also does it include junior college and technical college as well?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@tinawatanabeMAR. 04, 2015 - 04:09PM JST College education rates

Japan: female 56.4% male 58.8%, USA: femal 60.6% male 48.7%

Not much difference. No concern necessary from USA

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

False % Because there is no female colleges and no female Univ in USA that females do not go to college as much as males in USA. Males in USA have sport scholorships and they tend to go to colleges and Univ, too while girsl do not get boxing type scholorship. Not even baseball scholorship.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Speaking of education (one of M. Obama's topics while visiting) - all Japanese University students have to do is show up to "achieve" their degree. The hard part for them is just "getting into" the institution in the 1st place. How piteous!

In the US or UK, you really got to prove your potiential/proficiency in the subject matter. And believe it or not, your're encouraged to question all points of view and learn to think for "yourself." Japanese just preach the same conformity & memorization.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@toshiko "females do not go to college as much as males in USA"

Really? According to a Pew Research Center article, in 2012, 71% of female recent high school graduates were enrolled in college, whereas the corresponding figure for males was 61%.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Yubaru and toshiko, please enter "overseas topic for tomorrow date"

I found other data, and it seems that Japan's college rate is quite low.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I hope Michelle and the Obama girls have a good time sightseeing in Kyoto and Angkor Wat, and I hope education for girls in general is promoted at some point, too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@tinawatanabeMAR. 04, 2015 - 10:46PM JST Yubaru and toshiko, please enter "overseas topic for tomorrow date"

I found other data, and it seems that Japan's college rate is quite low.

;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

I believe Yubaru has been an established educator.

tina: Have you attended any Univ in USA? You are writing with your imagination when you write abiut USA

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@wC626: I respect opinion but false data is not opinion.

back to topic, it is nice MO talks with Mrs. A who knows how to speak up. Beside that, both ladies have same aganda. Next, hope they will think about ladies after college. Unlikew USA college grad lasdies, Japanes women do not rush to marry.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

cardsfan,

The link becomes very long. As I said, I found data that Japan's colledge rate is low. So, I rest my case and welcome the first lady.

toshiko and Wc625

Sometimes non-Americans can see Americans more objectively. Anybody who studied in USA are supposed to have positive view about USA?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Hope Mrs O will not abandon her desire to help Asian women afterr Her husband finish his presidency.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@turbo: Children are theirs. When Obama becaem Pres. candidate first time,. his family records are all in public, including children' birth records, date, hospital; name, etc. At that time I thought DEM wanted to show he is not impotent as no one could dig female scandals. (After Cinton and Monica stories) But watch out. People who created Obama birth stories disappeared. We can criticize them but when you write false stories like that, FBI are not kind. It is easy to get false story makers now, thanks to face book. I assure you Obama is not impotent and Mrs Obama had her daughters in hospital.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder to what extent Japan's two-and-a-half-decades-long "lost decade" results from its not making fully use of half of its talent....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

2JTDanManMAR. 05, 2015 - 06:56AM JST I wonder to what extent Japan's two-and-a -half-decades-long "lost decade" results from its not making fully use of half of.

==========================================\

Several years ago, Toshiba separated 3 female scientist technolohiss from her obnoxious subptfoinate men and gabve free working environ,emt They invemted new kind of screen that did not have to use some kind of eye lemzes. Result --- sales were up and T became No 1 TV sales company.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The link becomes very long.

Ridiculous. Its not long at all, its less than 1 line. You are just trying to hide the fact that you used a dead blog from an unknown author with data that is several years old. Here is the link that was 'too long:' http://ameblo.jp/cometoknow/theme4-10028783011.html

Sometimes non-Americans can see Americans more objectively. Anybody who studied in USA are supposed to have positive view about USA?

Yes, you are correct. Many Americans cannot objectively think about social issues facing the US such as gender gaps, female education, and the 'glass ceiling' for women. Likewise, many Japanese cannot think objectively about the problems facing Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"The Cambodian government has been led since 1985 by Prime Minister Hun Sen,"

Maybe Michelle will tell the guy it's past time to retire...

toshiko:

"She will be surprised to find Japanese women are well educated, comparing USA women."

Har!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

PM Abe had been kind to Japan's female crowd. Mow Mrs Abe's turn to promote education of other Asian countries; female. Maybe increase student visas to Asian countries female i?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The most powerful person in the world is coming to visit Japan, yaay!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Tina is a bit defensive. Many people here like Japan and Japanese people (more than their own politicians do BTW). There is a difference between hating a Japan, and liking it--yet still being critical of things that are wrong in Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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