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Sumo champions get pay cuts over assault scandal

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One would assume that their are laws regarding both the person who perpetrated the assault and and possibly the bystanders who took no steps to discourage it. Does the Sumo Association outrank the legal system? As it seems, nobody is disputing the events as they have been reported. Why has Harumafuji not been charged with a crime yet?

I am not saying that there is not a culture of violence and iron-fisted maintenance of a hierarchical system. These could be used as mitigating factors at an sentencing hearing maybe, but not as an excuse to get away with it by paying a small fine. I must admit that his behavior since has shown contrition and remorse. That being said, anybody else (pleb that is) would likely have been incarcerated or at least brought up on formal charges.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Japan's sumo authority decided Wednesday to cut the pay of two grand champions who failed to stop a brutal assault by a fellow champion on a junior wrestler.

Quite the over exaggeration here! Hardly a "brutal" assault, brutal assumes that the person attacked would be seriously injured to the point of being unable to perform their duties due to the injuries incurred.....particularly an athlete or as in this case a sumo wrestler.

He was in the ring the next day, in a local tournament, with ZERO signs of any injuries!

This article is also conveniently leaving out the information about Takanohana and his potentially being censured by the sumo association for his actions in all this mess too!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

That being said, anybody else (pleb that is) would likely have been incarcerated or at least brought up on formal charges.

Not necessarily, if the person who is guilty of the assault, makes sincere attempts to compensate the victim, the police and prosecutors will often times drop any charges and the person will not go to jail.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

One would believe this “assault “was similar to E.Honda from street fighter doing his signature hundred hand slap.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

may be someone internal wants him to step down. never know. politics everywhere.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

the police and prosecutors will often times drop any charges

As long as stable master Takanohana does not drop the charge against Harumafuji,  police will not. Takanohana is still very angry about what they have done to his follower Takanoiwa.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Those long prolonged shots of all the sumo big wigs all siting in a room staring at each other is becoming a bit of a freak show. Agree this is all being way overblown and the actors in the drama now look like they are going for an Oscar award. Theatre for the press.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Sumo is a reflection of Japanese people, society, tradition and history. If sumo is done as foreigners want it to be according to the international standard, it will lose charm and will lose popularity. I feel some kind of hypocrisy that the issue is discussed by public figures including lawyers, former prosecutors, scholars, polices etc. The incident was not a big issue. Takanohana stable master intentionally did an outrageous thing taking the inside quarrel to the police. Commentators here criticize fixed matches in sumo, but we are not very much surprised that happens. We enjoy sumo knowing about it. Sumo cannot be understood without understanding the feelings of "giri ninjo" of Japanese people. Takanohana broke the rule of "giri ninjo" taking the case to the police.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

And the show just keeps, rolling on and on and on. And the media piranhas are in a feeding frenzy.

My take on this is - aside from the initial assault, which shouldn't have happened and reflects poorly on haramafuji - that the Sumo association is really put out by incidents it thinks it has supreme control over.

The fact that this went public and reported to police before a whiff was sent to the association, must have really, really gnawed in the bellies of the leaders. I guess they saw it not just as a breach of etiquette & protocol, but a challenge by Takanohana to bring shame and disarray upon them - Takanohana being the blackest sheep in the flock.(is that p.c. to say that?) and known to be out for revenge of sorts after his miss at being chairman.

And it is widely understood that the Sumo association is not pleased with the power and dominance of the Mongolian wrestlers. The only Japanese yokozuna - Kisenosato - gifted the title by the association, is not in the same league and everyone knows it.

And the elders were particularly irked by Hakuhos victory speech at the last basho where he called for the return of both wrestlers involved in the fracas (it's not his right to determine such) and heaven forbid he led the audience in 3 banzais (gaining public opinion on his side, which was stepping way way out of line for those who-are-deemed-absolute-rulers.) Big Miffs all round. Ha, Ha.

And so incensed by all of this, Kitamura, chairman of the yokozuna council, yesterday decided to publicly berate Hakuho - the greatest wrestler in history (and a mongolian) humiliating him for his poor technique at the start of bouts where he uses a slap and elbow at the charge. He said to the effect,  "I can't bear to watch it. I want to see real sumo".

What a sad state. If the other wrestlers were up to it, they'd have worked out a counter to Hakuho's challenge long before this - but they can't. And Kitamura said that that first slap puts the wrestlers off guard, so they consequently lose, forgetting to mention that more often than not, they lose by other superior techniques. And big diddums - they are put off. Now that's embarrassing.

Yes this is all about control and the association is really taking a hit here and it's going to make examples of many to get back onto the top perch with the other pigeons. Crows will not be tolerated.

And it ain't over yet.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

this is all becoming a farce. the silence of both takanohana and takanoiwa is both stunning and comical. a former yokozuna pushing out a current yokozuna is unheard of. and yet the sumo association has let this happen. smh

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Takanohana stable master intentionally did an outrageous thing taking the inside quarrel to the police. 

The ironic part is now it will be very difficult for Takanoiwa to get up the courage to enter the ring again, after pissing off so many people.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Schopenhauer

Rather than "giri ninjo" where the "ninjo" is usually just the icing on the cake, I see "uwabe" (facade, appearances) which is the key to understanding social relations in human society, as in Hans Christian Andersen's immortal tale. The suspension of disbelief that permits "uwabe" is called "kayfabe" in pro-wrestling circles. In short, there is a lot of hypocrisy involved in this case, as you point out. Sumo is a martial sport/art for violent, aggressive individuals, so it is hardly surprising to hear of alcohol-fuelled altercations. My personal view is that as long as an out-of-the-ring incident is not serious, Sumo wrestlers should be given a second chance. Asashoryu was a great yokozuna who paid the ultimate price for breaking "uwabe". Sumo was left all the poorer with his banishment from the ring.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This is unfair to say the least. Things could have turned into a nasty brawl if they had tried to put an end to the fight. The sumo association should have put fore anger management consultations.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sumo is a reflection of Japanese people, society, tradition and history. If sumo is done as foreigners want it to be according to the international standard, it will lose charm and will lose popularity. I feel some kind of hypocrisy that the issue is discussed by public figures including lawyers, former prosecutors, scholars, polices etc. The incident was not a big issue. Takanohana stable master intentionally did an outrageous thing taking the inside quarrel to the police. Commentators here criticize fixed matches in sumo, but we are not very much surprised that happens. We enjoy sumo knowing about it. Sumo cannot be understood without understanding the feelings of "giri ninjo" of Japanese people. Takanohana broke the rule of "giri ninjo" taking the case to the police.

I agree with the above, BUT, this all reflects poorly on society, its NOT something to be proud of. This is the kind of thinking that gives us the ldp, institutional corruption & massive debt that goes along with it, of course ijime is also an integral part in all & highly pervasive....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Failed to stop seriously and punished? Since when is a pay cut a suitable punishment?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The ironic part is now it will be very difficult for Takanoiwa to get up the courage to enter the ring again, after pissing off so many people.

He didn't piss people off, his stable master has, as Takanoiwa lied to Takanohana about his reasons for going out that night, as Takanohana has a rule in his stable that "his" wrestlers are not allowed to go drinking with wrestlers from other stables.

As long as stable master Takanohana does not drop the charge against Harumafuji, police will not. Takanohana is still very angry about what they have done to his follower Takanoiwa.

Takanohana has only filed a complaint with the police, who then investigate the complaint, and then decide whether or not to turn the complaint over to the public prosecutor. The police CAN and DO stop the process, no matter whether or not the person filing the complaint withdraws it or not.

In this case the police have turned this over to the prosecutors office, because in the process they found enough evidence to do so, along with Harumafuji's own confession as well.

There is little chance this will go to a trial

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Shouldn't the JSA also take a pay cut (the board), since they also failed to stop it? This has happened in the past, with murder occurring on their watch, and yet it still happens today after their in-house investigations and supposed punishments. Why aren't they also stepping down and/or taking pay cuts?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Association chair Hakkaku said Hakuho and Kakuryu must also accept responsibility because they "failed to prevent the violence that was being carried out in front of them by a fellow yokozuna".

Although I 'morally' agree with that, I still think JSA didn't handle the situation effectively and made a mess of the whole thing.

Also think they should have taken 'some' responsibility as this incident is the result of sumo's toxic culture and ultra-hierarchical organisation i.e. near-untouchable yokozuna and their dozens of lackeys (basically the whole stable).

As for Takanohana, the bloke's an enigma. Does he have some sort of personality disorder?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Shouldn't they arrest the bartender or whoever gave the guy the drinks? If he drove a car and injured someone that would be the law!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The only good thing about this debacle is that it keeps Trump out of the TV news.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Association chair Hakkaku said Hakuho and Kakuryu must also accept responsibility because they "failed to prevent the violence that was being carried out in front of them by a fellow yokozuna".

___

If Takanohana were repeatedly hit and didn't fight back I suppose there may be some responsibility. But that is unlikely and it really is hard to apportion blame to Hakuho without knowing exactly what happened.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hakuho and Kakuryu would not receive a salary in January, while Hakuho would forfeit half his pay in February.

Can anyone tell me why Kakuryu loses a month but Hakuho loses 1.5?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Can anyone tell me why Kakuryu loses a month but Hakuho loses 1.5?

Hakuho is considered more responsible because he actually won, and was thereby responsible for a loss. At least that is what I have picked up in the Japanese sports pages.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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