I’m not actually that into the idea of a lengthy back and forth because regardless of what you or I think, the local government of Shibuya is going to do what it’s going to do. Us typing away changes nothing.
Basically to summarise my stance, I’m not saying that they should have waited until someone died, that’s you and other commenters putting words in my mouth. I’m saying that I don’t think anything like Itaewon will happen. In terms of evidence on my side, I’ve got every single Shibuya Halloween that has ever occurred and my own personal experience. If we’re worried about people being killed whenever large crowds gather, I don’t think “accepting responsibility” (or however you put it in an earlier comment about public safety) would really cut it anyway.
For some reason, we only appear to be worried about potential loss of life in Shibuya at Halloween and there’s no reason to think that’ll happen, especially if sensible measures - short of banning it - are taken.
Last thing though:
I’m sorry, mate - you just don’t know that about Itaewon!
Is that your argument? because just saying other people don't understand something do not prove you are right with a claim, if anything it only proves you can't argue against what those other people are saying.
I tend not to make a hobby out of getting into dorky, tedious internet debates (because as I say, they’re pointless) so I’m not down with the vernacular, but yeah that’s my “argument”, if you like. You literally don’t know if it would have helped at Itaewon or not because it wasn’t done. It’s hypothetical.
Have a good one.
-6 ( +0 / -6 )
When there is enough evidence of an gradual increase of violence and the extra risk that comes from an important number of extra people going to the event this year in particular…
I’m yet to see any such evidence. I’d wager the opposite is true given the heavy-handed tactics the city has employed since 2019.
…saying that they should have waited to do something only after some people died is not a responsible nor desirable position to take.
That’s not exactly what I’m saying, but I don’t think trying to smear something as dangerous where no one has been hurt is a desirable position. It’s authoritarian. Also trying to ban it under the auspice of public safety when they’re already on record as saying they don’t like it because of litter is craven.
Shibuya has the legal right to do what they’re doing,of course. I’m saying they’re morally wrong.
A one-way systme would have not prevented the tragedy at itaewon, and the block was intended to make it difficult for people to attend the event. Not to increase the safety if the full projected number of people went to Shibuya.
I’m sorry, mate - you just don’t know that about Itaewon! Also, if you’re saying that the block at the station was not done in th me interest of public safety, then it’s Shibuya city who are being irresponsible, not the revellers.
-7 ( +1 / -8 )
That's exactly the point, though. All it takes is "a few idiots out of a crowd of thousands" to do serious damage.
A vandalised truck isn’t serious damage. No one was hurt.
Remember that no one anywhere has died or even gotten hurt up until this point.
Should they have waited until it escalated from property to human life? You are basically arguing that the only valid way to justify any measures is reactionary -- the "all is fun and games until someone cries" principle?
Yes actually, that’s more or less what I’m saying. There’s a word for when no one gets hurt: “safe”.
If we’re worried about the potential for harm, we should ban all large gatherings like matsuris, music festivals, gigs, nightclubs, fireworks etc. They all have the potential for people to get hurt.
However, what I’m not saying is that nothing at all could be done. They could provide trash cans, toilets, implement a one-way system in narrower steets and crucially, not block access to public transport like they did this year.
-8 ( +0 / -8 )
In 2018, people flipping a truck and that was instigated by a foreigner.
Interesting framing. Oh well, if a foreigner told them to do it, I guess the Japanese people who actually did it had no choice. Whatever their nationality, they shouldn’t have done in and as far as I’m aware, they’ve faced the consequences for their actions.
Oh no, not trash! Someone should invent some kind of receptacle or something.
Vandalism (they had to cover a promo train car with anti-vandalism measures):
There’s no actual vandalism mentioned here, just the suggestion that some might possibly occur. Hardly the same thing.
Train stabbing suspect:
That was truly awful. It didn’t occur in Shibuya though. It’s a case for having cops on trains, if that’s what you’re suggesting? It’s also not the first time a attack occurred on public transport in Japan. Far from it. This one just happened to occur at Halloween. It’s a bit gross to try to smear everyone wearing a costume on the streets of Shibuya for what this monster did/tried to do on a train.
Gropings, assault and thefts:
I’m not about to defend criminals. Criminals should be arrested: that’s what laws and cops are for. But 13 people doesn’t sound like very many, especially given the crowd size. It would take more than that to reasonably conclude that Shibuya Halloween was particularly dangerous. In fact, compared with other major cities, it sounds relatively safe! At a minimum, we’d need to see the crime figures for other nights of the year in Shibuya for comparison. Even if 13 people aren’t arrrested every Saturday, it’s unlikely to be 0 people and no crime.
Basically, one can say that crimes occurred, and that may be true, but we can’t pretend that they only happen on Halloween or that they only happen in Shibuya. What we’re looking at here is a list of sensationalist excuses. The vast, overwhelming majority of revellers are just people out to have a nice time. That’s not such a compelling news story though, is it?
-9 ( +1 / -10 )
Shibuya Halloween went ahead for many years without incident. People put on costumes and went along and there were basically no problems.
Then the authorities complained about litter and inconvenience. As far as litter goes, that’s a fair point, but they should have just put out trash cans. In terms of inconvenience, it’s just two nights a year! Who’s being more selfish here: young people who want to have this street party once or twice a year or people who can’t stand being put out even slightly and want to ruin it?
Anyway, the authorities had a bee in their bonnet, but tutting about trash wasn’t going to cut it. Then in 2018, a few idiots out of a crowd of thousands vandalised a truck. That gave the powers that be the ammo they needed to try to convince the public that Shibuya Halloween was dangerous and violent. After all, lots of foreigners go there.
So from 2019 to 2022 they employed heavy handed crowd control tactics. Remember that no one anywhere has died or even gotten hurt up until this point.
In 2022, a terrible tragedy unfolded in another city in a different country. That has apparently given the authorities the perfect excuse to try to shut it down completely and make out that Halloween itself is dangerous. It’s a goulish attempt to make hay out of a tragedy to further a pre-existing agenda. We all know it has nothing to do with the tragedy in Seoul (or terrorism, as one commenter histrionically wrote). It’s about shutting down an event they just don’t like, but newsflash: Japan is a free country.
I’m inclined to agree with the people interviewed for this story. If people can’t have this kind of innocent fun in Shibuya, where can they do it? Shame on those that want to spoil this magnificent, spontaneous, people-driven event and double shame for using a tragedy to do so.
-6 ( +2 / -8 )
I’m glad people still went. People should be free to have harmless fun, and let’s be clear: that’s exactly what it is. Shibuya Halloween has been going on for years without anyone getting hurt.
There has always been a police presence, but turning it into a police state for an evening is a relatively recent phenomena. So no matter whether they put on this current big, noisy, expensive show of force or have a more measured police presence, the people of Tokyo have shown that they’re capable of getting together, putting on costumes and having fun (even in large numbers) largely without incident.
I’m heartened to see that most comments are along the same lines. Basically, people who like it should be able go and enjoy. People who don’t like it seem to want to see it shut down with a show of state force. There are a number of other cities in Asia that the latter group can live in, if that’s what they like.
-4 ( +2 / -6 )
"What happened in Itaewon could happen here!"
Why? Because it's also Halloween? Very strange logic. It should apply to all mass gatherings, surely. I don't see any calls to cancel fireworks, music festivals, Odoris, New Years Countdowns, crowded shrines on New Years Day etc though. Those are authorised fun.
Fact is that Shibuya has been having these parties for years and nothing that bad has happened except for the one truck incident. As unpleasant as it was for whoever owned the truck, no one got hurt. I think it's time to look into the real reason the authorities don't like the Shibuya Halloween gathering.
1 ( +4 / -3 )
I fully agree with the commenter that is appalled by the invocation of the tragedy in Incheon. I think it’s disgusting to capitalise on a tragic accident to push the same old agenda they’ve been pushing for years! They pushed it before Incheon, they pushed it even before a few local idiots decided to flip a truck. They’ve never liked the Halloween party - it has nothing to do with public safety.
Japan is perfectly capable of having large gatherings without significant incident and you don’t have to look any further than Shibuya Halloweens prior to 2018 and every Halloween since.
This is all about the fact that it’s a large, organic event that the people decided they wanted to get together and make happen rather than something that was officially sanctioned. If the powers that be were smart, they could make some money from it, make it safe and clean etc, but instead they’d rather crush it. If I’m being brutally honest, I think it’s because people mostly street drink rather than go bars and spend 1000 per drink, and the entertainment industry is probably quite a powerful lobby in Shibuya ward
I get that it can be annoying for some people to see large crowds enjoying themselves, but if throngs of revellers (and the attendant noise and mess) aren’t your thing, I’ve got some bad news for you about Shibuya on any given Saturday night of the year!
I used to go to Shibuya during Halloween and went many years in a row. All I saw was people having a good time! It’s essentially harmless and I’m glad that Japan is a free country so people will always have the right to congregate. I hope they continue to do so.
10 ( +21 / -11 )
Musk has been complicit with authoritarian governments (Turkey, India) in shutting up their political opponents and does so citing that it’s the law in those countries, so I don’t want to hear any more about him being a free speech warrior
He shouldn’t have a problem following Australia’s laws unless - as many of us suspect - it’s only certain types of speech he seeks to protect.
7 ( +21 / -14 )
Yet more good news, then.
-2 ( +1 / -3 )
Oh, thank god! With the announcement that electricity is about to get 40% more expensive, the ongoing war in Ukraine and the announcement of the closure of the Spider-Man Ride at USJ, this could’ve seemed like a bit of a bad news day.
Luckily, rich people remain rich and price gouging companies have kept their market value. phew!
-5 ( +3 / -8 )
People in this comment section for the last three years: “Wearing a mask should be a free choice left up to the individual and they shouldn’t be judged for it!”
Japan finally makes mask wearing optional
Same JT commenters: “Why are people still choosing to wear masks?! They’re wrong and should be ashamed of themselves!”
2 ( +3 / -1 )
I see a few people complaining about NATO “expanding” eastward. NATO isn’t an amorphous entity - countries voluntarily ask to join. Why? Ask Ukraine!
Parallels between more countries willingly joining NATO and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are a totally false equivalency.
Furthermore, Finland borders Russia and Russia never even talked about invading them. However they invaded Ukraine twice in eight years. They clearly have agrressive imperialist/expansionist ideas towards Ukraine in particular. This renders NATO quite necessary. If Ukraine had been allowed to join before, we wouldn’t have this war.
After all, what would Russia have done about it? Invaded? Turns out there’s no appeasing some people.
7 ( +10 / -3 )
Gonna go out on a limb and say that’s she’s lying.
I sort of hope they throw the book at her for this. Mostly because of the level of gall and entitlement it takes to lie so brazenly, but also for the attempt try to capitalise on grief.
-1 ( +2 / -3 )
I feel like getting arrested for using your chopsticks to eat the pickled ginger is a bit strong! It's not quite the same as the sushi lickers: more of an unhygenic act or social faux pas than an act of deliberate sabotage.
As another commenter here mentions, there are plenty of dodgy dealings in the business world (including pretty rampant wage theft) that cause far more societal harm and yet go completely unpunished, let alone arrests made.
1 ( +11 / -10 )
Slightly disappointed (thought not at all surprised) to not see any faces this morning, as I was hoping for more of a return to normality. But each to their own: people should always be free to wear a mask if they want!
The only thing I would say is that perhaps the government could enforce that freedom of choice a bit more. Many companies are still making their staff wear them, so in a very real sense, many people are not free to choose.
8 ( +11 / -3 )
If the government is letting itself off the responsility of having to pay for Covid treatment, I feel like it could do a lot more to ensure that mask wearing is a personal choice. I notice that most companies are continuing to require staff to wear masks.
Covid is either serious or it’s not - it can’t be both ways.
Right now it feels like we’re getting all the downsides to covid being reclassified without any of the upsides.
7 ( +10 / -3 )
I wasn’t expecting how excited I’d be at the prospect of going without a mask! I can’t wait. I’m so happy that convinis and theme parks won’t require them anymore. I’m hoping bars and cinemas will be the same.
I recently visited home. Not wearing one was weird at first, but I came to like it and it was hard to go back to carrying one on my return to Japan. Turns out I really missed seeing people’s whole face!
Of course, wearing one should always be a choice, but sadly we won’t be seeing many faces come next Monday because the rules are too complex, and as some other commenters have alluded to, no one wants to be the first.
Anyway, it’s a step in the right direction and I’m looking forward to the day when I don’t have to wear one at all! Hopefully by May 8th…
-1 ( +0 / -1 )
"A tragedy happened in a different country this weekend. Aren't you worried it could happen here?" is an interesting take.
140 people died crossing a bridge in India this weekend too. Why aren't we checking every bridge in Japan?
Absent from this story are any details of any recent misadventures from Shibuya Halloween. It's just a lot of people in costume having a bit of fun. Trying to tie it to the tragedy in Korea is a pretty craven, bloodthirsty way to drive clicks and make a drama out of what amounts to Shibuya just being busier than usual.
-3 ( +2 / -5 )
Gonna take a wild guess and say that none of the people complaining here about Shibuya Halloween ever had any intention of going and may not spend much time in Shibuya in general. If it’s not for you, it’s not for you and that’s A-OK
No need to get bent out of shape over something you’ve never experienced. I went to see it for myself last night. It was busy, but it was fine. It wasn’t a riot. It was no worse than a music festival or fireworks celebration here, in terms of crowds. The police were controlling the flow of people well.
I could see how anyone not wanting to take part would find it a little annoying, but as I say, it’s really just large crowds in what is typically the busiest part of Tokyo anyway.
Parco (and any other business) are well within their rights to refuse admittance, so I’m not going to complain about that, but I don’t really see how it’s even a story.
4 ( +4 / -0 )
Ah yes, that well-known destination for Halloween revellers: Parco.
News outlets trying to make a drama and generate clicks from people trying to have a bit of fun have become more of a tiresome perennial staple than any party or festival ever could.
-5 ( +4 / -9 )
I don’t really see the problem.
You need a negative test to fly, then immediately into quarantine where you’re tested daily and cannot leave if you are positive. Then it’s enforced self isolation for a spell.
At what point can we say “This person may be foreign but they do not, in fact, have covid”?
If someone doesn’t have covid, they don’t have it. What difference does it make if they happen to be foreign? Covid doesn’t seem to have any problem doing the rounds here, regardless of the border policy .
I’m a bit disappointed at some of the commenters here. The policy is obviously based on a fear of the outsider rather than any scientific basis and the commenters here have bought into it! The only difference between you and someone this article talks about is that you already snagged a visa. Where are all my “We need to stop living in fear!” / “It’s just a flu!” / “We need to get back to normal NOW!” guys?! lol
4 ( +6 / -2 )
Even if one person dies from taking the shot, that is way too much
How many have died from covid?
-3 ( +5 / -8 )
Just a bit of context for those jumping on the story to scaremonger about the vaccines: while these cases are tragic, Japan has administered around 200,000,000 shots so far.
60% of people have had a shot
50% have had two.
These stories (which again, are tragic and worthy of serious investigation) are an anomaly.
10 ( +32 / -22 )
As long as it doesn’t interfere with the 5G my shot gave me, I’m fine.
17 ( +25 / -8 )
This is where good reporting is absolutely vital: is that normal for a vaccine? That rather important context is missing from this piece.
I notice people have to get flu shots every year, so I assume that it’s kind of common for some vaccines to lose some of their efficacy over time. But I don’t know the details and that’s what we could really do with learning from the news outlets we trust.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
Posted in: We must not create a society where those who do not get vaccinated feel guilty or lose out. We need to be careful not to encourage peer pressure through vaccine discount programs. See in context
Must absolutely, definitely not use peer pressure. This is Japan, after all.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
the number of elderly people testing positive for the coronavirus has been rising recently despite most of them having been vaccinated
The number of covid positive people isn't the relevant number if we're drawing inferences concerning the vaccine. For that, we would need to know what percentage of people dying/in hospital are fully vaccinated.
From what I've read, the people who die or go to hospital are almost exclusively unvaccinated. Vaccines seem very effective in keeping people alive and out of hospital.
3 ( +7 / -4 )
Yeah, sign me up. My two were NBD. Whatever it takes to save lives and get back to normal because I'm so tired of it all.
-2 ( +3 / -5 )