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Laurence Flynn comments

Posted in: Nearly 60% in Japan unaware of relaxed COVID-19 mask guidelines: survey See in context

People obviously love the anonymity and easy way that masks provide a shield against the complex social interactions that generate anxiety here. It’s the complete opposite of most Western cultures and therefore unfathomable to even those who believe they understand Japanese society. The government has created a monster and they have no way of ridding people of this absurd habit.

Bingo. Japan is ruining itself. The psychological harm this is doing to the younger generation is immeasurable. I'm an elementary school teacher and a few weeks ago was out with my 6th graders who were doing some hurdles. It was a hot day and all kids were still wearing masks. I asked one of the homeroom teachers if it was really necessary for the kids to wear masks. He then told the kids they could remove their masks when they reached the start line. Insanity.

Anyhow, most wouldn't remove their masks even then. I told one girl to take off her mask and she refused. So I asked her why. She said she was "hazugashi" (embarrassed) to show her face. Infuriating and very, very sad.

I have lived here for 25 years and know the culture well and have fully integrated. But I will not wear a mask outside of school. Before the summer I stopped wearing one in school but a teacher complained to the BOE and my boss told me I had to wear one. At least I tried.

I have never worn a mask outside school. To get to 100% mask compliance took until September 2020. But by then I realised the whole thing was a scam. I don't get looked at funny in shops and have never had a comment.

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

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