Debbie Itabashi comments

Posted in: Strong winds hit Kanto region, causing transport delays See in context

Got it 57.375 mph....

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Posted in: Strong winds hit Kanto region, causing transport delays See in context

Ok... Need a bit of math help here... 25.2 meters per second would be what for miles per hour??

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Posted in: Keeping cats away See in context

I have 2 cats... I have full pet bottles in my kitchen, entry way and other places. My cats like to like the bottles, when there is condensation on them. Doesnt keep them away from any spot I have them in. .... But then again my cats are strange... They like to take a bath in the tub. If they dont do that frequently enough... They play with the toilets bum wash spray - like a shower.

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Posted in: Nuclear Regulation Authority scraps reactor stress tests See in context

Tell me when, where and why I should be shocked and surprised. All I can really do is drop my head, sway it back and forth in disgust - concerning how this whole this has been handled - not controlled - by the ones that should have a clue about something that went wrong.

People will look back (in a not so close future) and pin point these 2 years as the area that started the mess they are in then.

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Posted in: 9 things that make an ‘ikemen’ (hot guy) See in context

To me... The list reminded me of 14-17 year olds... When the voice is dropping, body oder is sort of leveling off - so the fabric softener starts to stand out more. Ragged hair? Yeah, my almost 15 year old son rarely brushes his... It grows so fast that it stands like a peacock when cut. Slender hands? Teenage boy - with manly body? School time club? White skin? They are in school while the sun is up, of course they look like the vampire set croud? Plus they are too tired to run around, so they sit and do psp, ds3, manga and such. Subjects they talk about? Their only real activity of course. The rest is studies. Clothing? Well they have what ... 2-3 outfits since they are in uniforms all day snyway? Lol!!! These girls asked (even though it says 20,30 after their name... ) must really be jr high - high school age?? Right??

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Posted in: Mount Fuji 'under more pressure than last eruption' See in context

Techall... Good to keep an ear and eye out for... Cause then thats when I head to Narita with my family and get off this island. Once that puppy explodes... No plane will be taking off either.

Meanwhile - life is same ol' same ol' with the ocacasional PTSD from 3/11 attacks.

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Posted in: Customer service in Japan vs Europe See in context

I have been in Japan now over 20 years. While I can not speak of Europe, Australia or other Western Countries... I can speak of America. Wrapping: US. that is what service counters are for. Jp. I comprehend the politeness, but I dont always need my chocolates wrapped individually, in a box, wrapped in paper then put in a bag - when they wont make it home in the first place. Eating facilities: US. Yes fast food is just that fast - speed doesnt always (tho in a perfect world should) mean clean. Not all places are attentitive, while others earn (plus more) the tips that are left behind. Jp. I agree (someones comment above) that fast food is slow in the wait - and I dont want to hear about how they make sure the order is correct. Thats BS! Plenty of my orders have been messed up enough that I (normally a patient person) call the manager. Just last night my husband and I took our children out to celebrate our 19 th wedding anniversary - the place we went to, while the food tasted great ... The service was - well if tips were given here, I would have left none (& Im a good tipper)!! Our meals came so erratic that my husband & I finished our shared desert before any of our children were even brought theirs. When asked where the deserts were the waiter replied - that they were waiting in turn of the order .... We ordered the deserts at the same exact time. Mean while while waiting we watched 2 persons standing in the kitchen ( behind a glass window for all to see) eating, chatting and laughing ... Hello? I have had bad service in America as well. So?

There are many many more items that I can point out... But (yes, I have a huge BUTT)....

My answer is - Japan is not better - nor worse than other countries. Each place has its good points and its bad points ... But all in all they are all equals. Everyone just has to decide which points are most important to them and live in that place - or learn to survive with their surrounding bad points.

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Posted in: 16 dead, 8,670 treated for heatstroke July 23-29 See in context

Chiba track and field (Ken Sou Taikai) was held on July 27-28. My 14 year old son was out in that heat from 10 - 2 on Saturday. He was only out there half as long as a few of his team mates and friends. I was there with 2 younger kids, with a cooler box full of: fresh fruit, water, jello cups, tuna sandwiches, beef jerky and 2liter bottles frozen into ice - that melted and used to drink/cool down bodies. With sunscreen and huge beach umbrella - we were still burned in the bleachers. I was told later that the track was 38 at noon. Its a no wonder most of the boys throwing shot put (usual average 10 meters) were tossing 6-7 meters. My son that throws over 11 meters only made 10 plus, as his best that day. There were at least 1000 other junior high students involved, plus their team mates, coaches, families and such there. We saw 2 ambulances pulling away, its a suprize that there wasnt more. (after our cooler box drinks were gone, between going to the car and getting home, we purchased: vending sports drinks, shakes from McD, flavored water from convieniant stores ... 3 total... All this in the 20km to get home, mostly for my 14 year old.) So yes, why are these high energy, fluid draining, outside events not held at a better temp. Season or month? I suppose Japanese tradition dictates this, but isnt their someone strong enough with common sence to say 'Hey, what going on?!' in leadership?

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Posted in: Cool Japan? With new resident system for foreigners, 'Cold Japan' fits better See in context

">a foreigner married to a Japanese had normally been given the status of “spouse of a Japanese.” This will not entitle such a person to permanent status automatically, but rather one of four categories with the length of stay ranging from six months to five years—to be determined by immigration. When the date of expiration approaches, the spouse must apply for an extension,"

We had planned to apply for my permanent residence status this year. Am I reading this wrong, but because of the new law - it will be harder to get? Or is this saying all those with PR status will have to renew every 5 years? At the moment I have spouce of a J. National...

Speaking of which... Im scared now... Reading this reminded me that I renewed my passport and status last year and still have not gone to City Hall about it as of yet. I wonder how much trouble I may be in for?

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Posted in: Police gave victims' contact info to father of driver in fatal car accident See in context

I do realize that as Jonathan Prin put... If you do enough background looking he could have found all the information he asked for. Thats nice - except if he truly wanted to appologize ... The right thing would have been to do this officially. Have the police ask each family to get together and let this man face them in a controlled situation.

Earlier railings were mentioned... That they are not the responsibility of the police, but the citys. A group of friends of mine earlier this week was just talking about sidewalks. We each have had children hit or had a near scrape from the vehicles (trucks, cars & taxis) during their commute to and from school. I get once sometimes twice a year a policeman on my doorstep counting induviduals in our homes, asking if there is anything they can do. They did fix it so that taxis dont use our street as a quick way to get around traffic lights, in front of the hoikuen parents cars use the parking lot to pick up their children instead of blocking one of the main streets into our neighborhood. If the police can do this... Then why shouldnt they be able to work with the city and get protective areas for school routes? Speed bumps in areas where there are a lot of children? I realize I am asking the forbidden question - but.... What about common sense?

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Posted in: Water containing strontium leaks from Fukushima plant into sea See in context

12 TONS ... Is a lot to me, but combined with everything from the last year plus - how much ocean (and things inside of it) has been effected? How far - in distance before items are safe for consumption? Ok, I feel like I should be freaking out and panicing right now... Yet Im not.

With school and its lunches starting soon.... I not being proficiant in my Jp reading skills, need help with some comprehension. I am sure there are others out there that are like me as well. We are one of those families that are not able to just uproot and move because of a scare.

Food and water, I would like to know what areas are not the good (official and unofficial) places to buy from. I want to feel like I am trying to do my best (under conditions) for my family. Vegitables, grain and such ... Water wise, with this leak combined.... What about the fish, Seaweed, other things we get from the ocean? How far away from Fukushima land and water do we need to look at?

Can anyone point me (and others reading this) in a better direction then just personal assumption?

Btw - I really have learned a lot from the many points of views ... Thank you! That must be partial of the reason why Im not freaking out - like my head tells me that I should be doing.

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Posted in: Series of quakes rattle Japan, but cause no damage See in context

Gramie, didnt say it was THE answer, but even if any of their effects were about... Science - still learning of things about space - it is still an observation of things that may or may not have direct effect on how Mother Nature reacts to things here on planet Earth. Solar flares not even directed towards us still seem to effect things just fine.

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Posted in: Series of quakes rattle Japan, but cause no damage See in context

Making observations here... I read somewhere on a science page that the moon was at its closest to the Earth the week of March 11th. I was reading on threw facebook that the past 48 hours both Jupiter and Venus was lining up with the moon. Gravitational pull could have a portion of say about this.

Animals and bugs, I have been noticing and commented about the fact that I havent seen as many animals running around as I normally do - since the begining of February. I also havent noticed any crows either. Bugs wise, by now I have spiders and ants all over my front entry way - yet none yet. Over by the train station there is normally a large amount of cockroaches.... Yet seem to be very deminished this year as well. I dont know how to read the meaning behind it ... As I said on a post on facebook, but I would like to know. So mean while I am going to live my life - but keep an eye/ear out for watching what mother natures living non humans are trying to say.

Like I said, making some observations. Anyone else notice any of these as well?

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Posted in: Woman arrested for abusing 2-week-old twins See in context

I agree wirh others that this is a tragedy. But it is just 1 fanily while there are many many others out there in simular problems with their tiny ones.

We have all seen the movies, tv shows and such where in a child development class each student must care for a baby/egg. I agree with this. Jr high 3rd year (9th grade) ... an entire year dedicated to child development. Starting off with care of pregnancy for 9 weeks. Care of an egg then a doll (mechanical with crying too if possible). Teaching about the needed essentials, food, daipers, sleep, money... Leading up to a requirement of a number of volunteer hours at a day care and/or kindagarten prior to graduation. This would not only teach boys and girls child care but it would also lower teenage pregnancy and other concerns that stem from this.

As I told my kids... Daddy and I wanted to play, so now we gotta pay.

No I dont condone what happened... It is awful, a tragidy. But it should not happen again .... Which is why things need to change on how teens perceive babies, children, adulthood, parenthood - and family care for all. Or its only going to get worse.

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Posted in: Coke, Pepsi make changes to avoid cancer warning See in context

Nessie - you need to check all your facts before you tell me no... try this link for starters... from the Washington Post Social Reader. I couldnt find a better link - sorry.

it starts off with (paraphrased) 3 Surprising Reasons to Give Up Soda (published 8 weeks ago)

It causes invisible fat buildup around your organs. In the latest bad news for the soda industry, Danish researchers discovered that drinking non-diet soda leads to dramatic increases in dangerous hidden fats. Some contain toxic flame retardants. Some popular soda brands, including Mountain Dew, use a toxic flame retardant chemical ingredient to keep the artificial flavoring from separating from the rest of the liquid. You're taking part in the biggest science experiment on the planet. Many soda brands on the market in America today are sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup, a heart-harming man-made compound derived mainly from genetically engineered (GE) corn.

you need to read the entire article to get the full detail. But this is the start.

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Posted in: Coke, Pepsi make changes to avoid cancer warning See in context

I understand the effects of all soda - that it is bad for you and that it also builds up a fatty layer over every inner part of your body ... bones, intestines, liver, stomach, kidneys, lungs, heart, etc... so over years (even diet drinks do this) you have a beer belly... I get it - its bad for you.

All things done in moderation is the key. I enjoy my soda. I love it... I was an addict - to the point if I went longer than a day without it, I would get shaky. Over pregnancies and lifestyle for my kids I have weened myself from it. Yet that doesnt mean that I dont enjoy a good soda --- cola included --- every so often.

While this is good to know... I will continue to drink it as I like. ... only with moderation compared to my younger days. I do appriciate Californians for caring enough to at least try to make their 'bad for you' time a little less bad for you.

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Posted in: Professor wraps electrical cord around student's neck in class See in context

Considering that in order to graduate - even if the student just attends all classes and sleeps threw them ... Graduation is guarenteed. So its possible, all his students were asleep - he did announce it, nobody can confim nor deny it then he did it to get them out of their catatonic stare ... Just thinking out loud here... Not necessarily true, but plausible.

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Posted in: Facebook to seek to raise $5 bil in IPO See in context

I also wanted to add that with FB I am able to follow what my daughters are doing with friends in America while I am in Japan. I can keep involved with my brothers and sisters families - in America as well - with out having to schedule my time around what time it is in America to make phone or skype calls. I can read what they put down, when I get on or if we are on the same time, I can then chat with them ... and since fb and skype are co-ordinating their time together... I can even call them threw FB if wanted/needed. I dont feel like I am a gaijin alone in my inaka neighborhood.

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Posted in: Facebook to seek to raise $5 bil in IPO See in context

with most things, there are pro's and con's ... last year during the triple bad day of 3/11 I know plenty of people that used facebook and tweet to communicate with their families and friends. This was due to using the internet was a lot easier and not as busy as phone or cell lines were. My husband was in Hachinoe in Iwate, just 2 km off shore working at the time. He didnt have use of a phone, but when he was able to charge his cell, he was able to email me Saturday night to tell me he was ok. I went 30 hours not knowing ... his family in Sendai is the same. I was able to email them and find out how they were - the tsunami stopped less than 100 meters from the house. I agree there is the loss time at work for those that spend all day using facebook instead of doing their job. But companies can put blocks on their computers the same way games and other sites are blocked... for those companies that desire to do so. But what happens when that is the ONLY way of communication during a problem? I admit I am selfish and have more pros in my pocket for facebook then I do cons ... so I am glad that it is going to stay around.

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Posted in: Zapping testicles with ultrasound could be male contraceptive See in context

I don't know about you guys but most of the women here get pregnant within the FIRST year. Now if they know you have had a vasectomy your chances of getting married are slim to none.

A lot of Japanese women usually dont even get married until their late 30's.

Myself personally, my husband wants me to have more children. We have 5 now. He doesnt want to cut down there... So this seems to be a logical alternitive. Because its not just procreation on why we get together... But with 5 kids - one mught think so... Except 2 of them were while using protective measures. I thought about me and the knife, but all the hormonal changes and such - would the facial hair be a turn on? Lol!

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Posted in: Number of flu patients surpasses 1.11 million as epidemic spreads See in context


My MIL was a month away from turning 56. Much much way to young to end a life!


My 3 children had fevers and more... The Drs did this nose test to determine flu B... I never had a fever, but very lathargic and simular symptoms to my children... I live in Northern Chiba (Ibaraki is less than 15 km strait from my home). So - maybe its relivant to the radiation, but we will never know staying here in Japan - I am supposing.


I have only heard rumors and conjectures - but it was mentioned by some persons in conversation that the reason for not giving free medical help to under 18 years of age... Is due to their suseptability and the problems of what come from radiation into reproducing. Not wanting to believe this personally ... But would they be hoping that these children will die off so that to save future or defered need to support or care for deformed individuals? That is an awful awful thought!

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Posted in: Number of flu patients surpasses 1.11 million as epidemic spreads See in context

Ok, at my elementary school flu A is spreading like wild fire. At my jr high a few siblings of the elementary group are getting it as well. The Drs are giving them meds - then the kids return to school the next day.

My 5th grader got sick on Sunday the 22nd. I kept him home monday ... Only to have his 4 year old sister become the same way. Tuesday I took them both to see the Dr. He (50ish) said its flu B (swine). He gave the kids this inhaler powder medication for one dosage, and said that my 5th grader had to stay home until a full 2 days had passed after his fever returned to normal. On Wednesday, my chu 2 (8th grader) also came down with it (swine). Again to the Drs. this time a woman in her late 20s gave my 8th grader meds for phlem, runny nose, cough, upset stomach, fever and powder inhaler - enough for 5 days worth. Also with the same direction of not returning to school for 2 full days after the fever broke.

It is a good thing in my oppinion... But shoulnt flu A have the same rules? Which if you ask me is wrong if it doesnt.

An other point I would like to address is most of the Japanese people (including my husband and his family) I know treat their doctors with the same level as if they were Gods. They dont question, get second oppinions and blindly accept what ever the doctor says and perscribes. The drs also get offended and mad at you when you do question their diagnoses. Which irrates me beyond belief.

So do I think over medication is involved? Or not medicated enough? Well I think it has a lot to do with individual patients and doctors... I think my younger 2 needed a tad more, but my 8th grader... Over done possibly? But (hind sight 20/20) I should have been more me during these checks and not so readily accepting of an answer of a person that had just met my children and daignosed them within 15 minutes. -same sickness - different treatments. Yet hear I am a week later with 3 still sick children at home... On Sunday again.

I take my kids to a learning large hospital - not to a clinic ... Where most of my neighbors go to... Where those drs dont have a supervisor to report to or have polocies they have to follow. So it is a huge possibilty that the clinic doctors were not required to tell their patients the same thing about staying home.

A few years ago I was complimenting my ob/gyn to a large group in Tokyo that he attends conventions, reads the latest journals, has a reference number with a medical library in Hawaii ... A man in the group listening ( that I found out much later he is also a dr - not sure what kind though) said strait out ... That my dr was already a dr and since he graduated from school there was no reason to keep learning more - that my dr is a fool for this unneeded study and learning. Many others there agreed with him... Once again giving the God complex back .... So wrong!

Wont even touch the fact that due to a drs incompetance and Japanese non-asking factors ... My husbands mother died a totally senseless death from uteran cancer ... That was daignosed as menopause for months until it was so big she looked pregnant. At the time of death the tumor was larger than the size of a honey dew melon!

But I digressed - the main factor is nothing is really cleaned properly or sanitized properly in the public use areas either... So germ spread is as easy as just walking threw a room. Which is probably how my kids were infected at first.

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Posted in: Sega seeks stream of success with 'Toylet' games See in context

I just got done defending Japan ... An article was out there talking about how Japan will corrupt other countries with this and how they dont want it... I said that I live in Japan and have not seen any... This explains why. 1 they are in mens rooms & 2 they are mainly in bars and restaraunts ...

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Posted in: Romney team hits back at Obama's 'job destroyer' attack See in context

This has been an intresting discussion. I have not as of yet decided whom I want in office. I am watching, listening, reading as much as I can.

I want to thank the group minus one individual for keeping the discussion on for the most part about the person and policies - not about their religions. Many persons I know have come to me and have told me that because I amO LDS (Mormon), they know who I am voting for. Just because Romney and Huntsman are of my same faith does not mean that I think they are the best for the job based on that fact. Learning others thoughts of business, health and other past items all of these candidates have done or can offer - is a good eye/earfull.

I am sure that I dont like where America has been recently nor where its heading at its present direction. I am looking, praying, listening, reading and pondering with all the intelligence God our Father in Heaven has given me and to others who can teach me what I dont know - towards making my as best informed decesion on whom to vote for this November.

I dont have facts I can print here for or against either party.. But I do think slander against others is petty and shows immaturity - also tells me that the person doing the slander really doesnt have much to stand on, so they feel the need to knock the others down.

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Posted in: Changes coming to foreign registration, visa system See in context

Ok, fees are being dropped. Im waiting for that 'other shoe' to drop .... About money. In the old system we were nickle and dimed over every paper, stamp, visit and want.... With most of those choices being combined .... As smithinjapan mentioned an increase in payment briefly. I am scared that in order to get these convieniances, payment may cost us an arm and a leg as well. For me, I havent left Japan since 2006, so I havent needed nor purchased a re-entry ticket in years. Keeping that cost down. But with this new system.... ??? I havent read any official site (not quite sure where to look) but the money thing bugs me. We arent going to get this new stuff for free and with immigration to Japan at a low due to events last year.... Japan isnt rich, financing has to come from somewhere. So why not put it on the shoulders of non-Japanese folk? Otherwise Im not disagreeing much with anything written above. I too enjoyed the levity on the spouce's job... having 5 children and not wanting a 6th .... Im in trouble if they count the xxx into the works .... ;)

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Posted in: New expressway toll system goes into effect in Tokyo, Osaka See in context

From one entrance to the next exit is sometimes greater than 6km ... So if you need to travel more than 2 exits ... Yep its a 200 yen hike. Why pay 500 yen for 1 exit - when using the regular roads are free and sometimes faster.

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Posted in: Sky-watchers get rare treat: total lunar eclipse See in context

Myself and over 15 other women (AFWJ club here in Chiba) and a handful of our children/daughters (and a token husband here and there), were together having a celebration Christmas dinner bash. Now as some were leaving the moon was noticed, so the rest of us ladies followed out to get a good look. Yes it was cold, clear beautiful sky and totally wonderful - especially shared with good friends. At the time the moon was just about strait overhead and about 90% covered then. The perfect Saturday night - if you ask me! :)

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Posted in: 19-year-old parents questioned over alleged abuse of 8-month-old child See in context

@ Samantha ... You seem to be on the same page I am, living the same simular kind of life, living and being 'Japanese' amongst our neighbors and children. I enjoy reading and understanding your views and opinions. Bravo!

I dont want to change what is around me, but add my knowledge/ideas to the life around me to make things better.

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Posted in: 19-year-old parents questioned over alleged abuse of 8-month-old child See in context

I have been telling neighbors about babysitting for almost 2 decades now. I have been blessed with friends both Japanese and foriegn that have experianced babysitting first hand as teens themselves. When my teens were little I could get a friends daughter or son for an hour or two while I ran to the store or other short errand. When my now teens started JHS I got complaints from them when I made them do chores, make meals and babysit younger siblings or friends children ... They would say 'why do I have too? Other kids dont have too' - refering to jr high age Japanese friends. Others that they refered to are now graduating from high school soon and stiil no clue how to care for a child.

I have a 14 year old son in jr high now, he was assigned his work experiance day - it was to a day care (hoikuen) ... 5 kids in all went to work there. My son was the only one with a clue what to do. He also has 11 & 4 year old younger siblings... He whines and complains all the time to me when I make him babysit or help care for them when my hands are full, but he was given high praises at school from the day care center (the school took the compliments personally and not because of home life), which gave him a certificate (shoujou) of excelance recognized by our city. His older (16 & 17 year old) sisters also did the same whine and complaints, but now attend high school in America - for some spending cash they BABYSIT!

Seeing my other friends and women in their 30's give birth to their children .... Go home to mommy for 40 - 60 days to learn... Scares me. My mother in law was suprised at how much I knew.... But I grew up tending for mom (Im the eldest of 6) and her friends. I was also a nanny for a couple of years with 2 years of nursing school. I knew what I was in for before I got pregnant with my first. My family support is either in America or in Sendai ... So I searched for help around me. If Japan did a proper parenting class in jr high ... Not just sex ed. .... But got those life like dolls that my nieces and nephews (in America) have to use.... I think I would see a huge change in these generations of 'dont have a clue' aged kids/adults. I received my first visit from the city nurse when my 4th baby was 2 years old. I had no idea that there were such programs until that moment! Good thing I didnt depend on such things...

Any death of a small child or baby is a tragedy if it can be prevented. For a country so hell bent on education, Someone might think that this would fit into the frame of mind? Because these tragedies can be prevented - with knowledge, studies and education to all. Mean while this has been my home for approximately 20 years and will be for longer, for I still have a 4 year old I want to see graduate Japanese Jr High, before sending her to America to learn some of that part of her heratage like her older 4 siblings are doing in turn.

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Posted in: Oita woman arrested for allegedly beating 4-year-old son to death See in context

Murder is murder. Whether the mother 'snapped' or not - she murdered this 4 year old. If its stress and she lost it, then she should be committed and helped. If its otherwise, well then all those people out there in the world shouldnt go to prison for murdering someone then - if she doesnt have too ... murder is murder. I have a 4 year old (she is not my only child), I live in Japan, my family is far away, my husband works an average of 18 hour days 7 days a week plus due to economy the company reduced his annual pay by 4 months worth, I also am not a fluent Japanese speaker - yet I deal with schools, neighbors, shopping, bills, budgeting, hospitals, the day to day - on my own.... This woman has no excuses .... Murder is Murder!

I personally think that if teenagers took baby sitting jobs they would learn a bunch of skills needed to be a good parent. I know I did. Its a shame that this culture coddles their teens from most responsibilities from most everything - other than school.

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