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  • Archive for December, 2007

    End-Year Roundup: Twelve things that changed my life in 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 31st December 2007

    Holiday special on twelve things which changed my life in 2007, now becoming an annual tradition.

    Posted in Tangents | 3 Comments »

    DEBITO.ORG HOLIDAY EDITION NEWSLETTER 2006

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 30th December 2007

    ARCHIVING A HOLIDAY NEWSLETTER FROM LAST YEAR WHICH SOMEHOW NEVER GOT BLOGGED: 1) INTERVIEW WITH J-SELECT MAGAZINE
    2) BECOMING A LAWYER IN JAPAN: THE BIFURCATED J BAR EXAM
    3) JOEL DECHANT AND HIS GUIDED TOURS OF BEPPU
    4) TEN THINGS WHICH CHANGED MY LIFE IN 2006
    and finally… DEBITO.ORG A DECADE ON…

    Posted in Newsletters | No Comments »

    Comedian Dave M G on New News: parodies of current events

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 29th December 2007

    Hi Blog. News is piling up, but I promised more holiday tangent: Turning the keyboard to comedian Dave M G, with news about a comedy show he’s doing as a non-native speaker on domestic events. I’ve seen Dave in action many times before (he’s an amazingly funny guy, and I’ve spent a lot of time […]

    Posted in Humor, Tangents | 2 Comments »

    Economist on “When Japan was a Secret”

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 28th December 2007

    Hi Blog. Debito.org is following the template set by The Economist Newsmagazine, where the journalists digress from the usual serious stuff and put out a holiday issue of tangents. In this year’s Economist holiday issue, we have a three-pager on how people (particularly whalers and other merchant marines) were trying to open up Japan before […]

    Posted in Exclusionism, History, Tangents | 1 Comment »

    IMADR: Connect Mag on UN Human Rights Council’s first year

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 27th December 2007

    Human rights group IMADR in Tokyo offers a synopsis of the new UN Human Rights Council’s first year in existence. Scans of the print article, as well as links to other articles from The Economist and UN News archived at Debito.org, provided.

    Posted in Human Rights, United Nations | No Comments »

    Gregory Hadley on “Field of Spears”, re US POWs in Japan during WWII

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 26th December 2007

    Gregory Hadley in the Japan Times: “I became fascinated by that legendary B-29 [which crashed in Niigata during WWII]. Had it existed? If so, where had it come down? And what had happened to the crew? Fifty years had passed. Given the taboo of Japan not liking to talk about those dark days, would it be possible for me, a foreigner, to learn anything?” So began a three-year quest — a search that took him into small Japanese farming communities, dusty archives and mid-American townships, and to meet what he describes as “the quite exceptional members” of a POW support group in Japan…

    Posted in History, Tangents | No Comments »

    Kaoru/Coal manga on the “Mischievous Stealth Provocateur Debito”

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 26th December 2007

    Happy Boxing Day, readers. As another special treat, let me send you this manga created by fellow naturalized citizen Kaoru, who scribbles with great aplomb on a situation I’m bound to encounter sooner or later. In great manga style–so that’s how I look to some… Love it.

    Posted in Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Humor | 1 Comment »

    Holiday Cheer: Best of Duran Duran–ranking all their albums

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 25th December 2007

    Hi Blog, and Merry Christmas. I’m going to talk about something completely unrelated to Japan for a change. Duran Duran. Yes, the 80’s rock band. And give you a line up of both songs and reasons why you shouldn’t dismiss them too quickly.

    Posted in Tangents | 8 Comments »

    Tangent: Europe becoming passport-free. Contrast with Japan.

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 24th December 2007

    Hi Blog. Here’s evidence that other countries are putting up less immigration controls, not more (unlike Japan with its new fingerprinting policy, justified on overtly xenophobic grounds). Yes, the article mentions that border controls are toughening outside the Schengen Zone, but it’s still an amazing feat to be able to drive from Estonia to Portugal […]

    Posted in Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Immigration & Assimilation, Tangents | 8 Comments »

    Holiday Tangent: SAYUKI, Japan’s first certified NJ Geisha, debuts

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 23rd December 2007

    For the first time in the 400 year history of the geisha, a Westerner has been accepted, and on December 19, will formally debut under the name Sayuki.

    Sayuki is specialized in social anthropology, a subject which requires anthropologists to actually experience the subject they are studying by participating in the society themselves.

    Sayuki has been doing anthropological fieldwork in Asakusa – one of the oldest of Tokyo’s six remaining geisha districts – for the past year, living in a geisha house (okiya), and participating in banquets as a trainee. She has been training in several arts, and will specialize in yokobue (Japanese flute)…

    Posted in Cultural Issue, Tangents | 8 Comments »

    SAYUKI 花柳界歴史上初の外国人芸者

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 23rd December 2007

    SAYUKI 花柳界歴史上初の外国人芸者 http://keyshots.smugmug.com/gallery/4014935 国籍 オーストラリア  日本の400年の歴史上において初めて異国の外国人女性として花柳界への扉を開き紗幸の名で芸者デビュー極めて異例の出来事である。  2007年12月19日東京浅草においてお披露目される。  日本で活躍する外国人女性として初の試みに加え、肩書きも異例で海外の国立大学での講師などを務め主な学位として、オックスフォード大学でMBAを取得後博士号「社会人類学」ならびに経営学の修士を取得最初の学位は日本の慶応大学「心理学」]で白人女性として初めて授与される。またテレビプロデューサーの顔も持ち、おもに比較文化的ドキュメンタリーの制作の監督を務めNHKをはじめBBCなど海外メディアで数多くのドキュメンタリー番組の監督、司会、ナレーションを日本語で行う、ファイナンシャルタイムス、ジャパンタイムスなどの記者として記事を寄稿、また、共同通信、ロイター通信の記者としての活動もこなす。  日本文化の著作を3冊海外で発表し民族研究・経営学の研究著作は海外で話題を呼ぶ日本の伝統文化・花柳界を海外メディア、日本のメディアを通しドキュメンタリー番組の制作なども手がけていく予定 お問い合わせ マスターマインド メールアドレスinfo@master-mind.jp http://www.master-mind.jp In English: http://www.sayuki.net, sayuki.geisha@gmail.com Fax-03-3713-1604 Photographs are available for purchase and download at: http://keyshots.smugmug.com/gallery/4014935 Photo by Kerry Raftis http://www.keyshots.com© ENDS

    Posted in Cultural Issue, 日本語 | No Comments »

    GOJ now worried about aliens. No, not foreigners.

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 22nd December 2007

    GOJ engaging in serious discussion of alien attack. No, not foreigners. Real space aliens. And this is the world’s second biggest economy still wanting to be taken seriously? I told you the legislative peerage was out of touch with reality. Somebody call a snap election and get these fools out.

    Posted in Humor, Ironies & Hypocrisies, Japanese Government, Japanese Politics | 6 Comments »

    Fingerprinting: How Yomiuri teaches J children that NJ are criminals

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 21st December 2007

    Yomiuri provides a public service for the youth of this nation–telling them in their “Kodomo News” that the new Gaijin Fingerprint Policy is for controlling crime and terrorism. The only drawback is they say you’d better manage the information properly. It’s not a matter of managing the information. It’s a matter of how you manage this policy so that you achieve your goals without imaging-down an entire segment of the population. As usual, the Yomiuri has no qualms about selling the policy as a crime-prevention measure against “foreign guests” even to impressionable children, carrying the bias down to the next generation.

    Posted in Education, Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Media, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 14 Comments »

    読売:子供に「外国人=犯罪者」の教育(指紋採取再実施の件)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 21st December 2007

    ブロクの読者、こんばんは。きょうの件は、子供の教育ですが、どうしても子供にも「外国人はテロリスト・犯罪者」を助長しないといけないですか。日本におけるテロは漏れなく日本人に起こされ、国内犯罪はほとんど日本人に犯されているのでこの指紋採取再実施は無意味と無関係です。この措置は税金の使用の手段にすぎないとはっきり言いましょう。でも、これは子供に伝わるでしょうか。有道 出人 =========================== こどものニュースウィークリー 指紋や顔写真を義務づけ入国審査の厳格化 (イメージをクリックすると拡大) http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/kyoiku/children/weekly/20071201ya01.htm http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/kyoiku/children/weekly/photo/20071201ya0101_L.jpg ●イラスト スパイスコミニケーションズ(ごみかわ淳) (情報管理の問題ではなく、外国人のイメージダウンの管理が問題では?それに、相変わらず、外国人の鼻を大きくしないと外国人になり得ないのでしょうか。)  11月20日から、日本に来た外国人には、空港などで指紋(しもん)の読み取りや顔写真の撮影(さつえい)に応じることが義務(ぎむ)づけられました。テロリストや犯罪者(はんざいしゃ)といった悪い外国人の入国を防ぐのが狙(ねら)いです。このような制度(せいど)が設(もう)けられたのは、アメリカに次いで2国目なのだそうです。  新制度は、外国人の不法な入国や滞在(たいざい)を禁じた出入国管理(しゅつにゅうこくかんり)・難民認定法(なんみんにんていほう)という法律(ほうりつ)を改正(かいせい)して、27の空港と126の港で導入(どうにゅう)されました。観光客も含めた16歳以上の外国人が対象で、その人数は1年間で約700万人に上ると見られています。  具体的(ぐたいてき)には、外国から到着(とうちゃく)した空港や港などで、機械の前に立ち、指示に従(したが)って、ガラス板の上に両手の人さし指を置きます。すると1秒ぐらいでチャイムが鳴り、指紋の登録(とうろく)が終了します。顔写真も、同じ機械の前に立つと、小型のデジタルカメラで撮影されます。 入管リストと照合  日本に入ってくる人をチェックしている「入国管理局(にゅうこくかんりきょく)」という国の機関がありますが、登録された指紋などは、この入国管理局のコンピューターにすぐに送られます。入国管理局は、入国させない外国人のリスト(ブラックリスト)を作っており、送られてきた指紋は、これらの外国人の指紋と照合(しょうごう)されます。ブラックリストに載(の)っている外国人かどうかが、5秒ぐらいで分かる仕組みになっているそうです。  では、ブラックリストには、どのような人が載っているのでしょう。それは、警察が指名手配(しめいてはい)している容疑者(ようぎしゃ)や、以前に日本で悪いことをして強制的(きょうせいてき)に本国に帰国させられた人、国境(こっきょう)を超(こ)えて活動するテロリストなどです。登録された指紋が、こうした人物のものと一致(いっち)すれば、入国管理局は入国を拒否(きょひ)したり警察に通報(つうほう)したりします。 初日5人入国拒否  新制度が始まった20日には、ブラックリストの人物と指紋が一致したとして、5人が入国を拒否されました。5人は、偽(にせ)のパスポートを使い、ほかの人になりすまして入国しようとしたようです。  今回の制度が設けられたのは、空港などから日本に入国しようとする外国人に対し、パスポートをチェックしたり、入国の目的を口頭(こうとう)で質問(しつもん)したりするだけだった今までのやり方では、日本に入ってはいけない人が紛(まぎ)れていても、見逃(みのが)す恐(おそ)れがあると考えられたからです。  2001年9月11日にアメリカで発生した同時テロ事件は、「アル・カーイダ」という国際テロ組織(そしき)が起こしました。この組織に関係する男が指紋付きで国際手配されていたにもかかわらず、この男は、1999年から2003年までの間に6回も日本に入っていたことが分かっているのです。  ほかにも、過去に強制的に帰国させられたのに、偽造(ぎぞう)パスポートを使ったり、名前を変えて新しいパスポートを手に入れたりして、また日本に来る外国人がたくさんいます。06年に強制帰国させられた外国人約5万6000人のうち、約7300人は過去にも強制帰国させられたことがあり、本来なら入国できない人たちでした。 情報管理など課題  新制度の導入で、こうした外国人の入国が防げると期待されているわけですが、指紋や顔写真といった情報の管理については、それらを見る権限(けんげん)を持っていない人が見たり、外に漏(も)れたりしないよう、十分に気をつける必要があります。  また、地方の小さな港に不定期に上陸する漁船などについては、入国管理局の職員(しょくいん)の数が足りないために、チェックしきれないという問題もあります。  新しい制度ができたから大丈夫と考えるのではなく、これからも改善(かいぜん)すべき点が見つかれば直していくことが大切です。 (2007年12月1日 読売新聞)

    Posted in Education, Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Media, Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | No Comments »

    APEC line open to NJ residents at Kansai Int’l Airport (UPDATED 1/7/08–now it is not)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 21st December 2007

    For those travelling over the holiday season, here are some helpful letters for those going through Kansai International Airport (Kankuu, or KIX). It turns out NJ residents can go through the APEC Immigration Channel (business line). Print up these letters if the terms apply to you, show them at the border, and decriminalize yourself more efficiently.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Good News | 2 Comments »

    Japan Times: My Dec 18 Zeit Gist column on premeditated xenophobia in Japan

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 21st December 2007

    We all notice it eventually: how nice individual Japanese people are, yet how cold — even discriminatory — officialdom is toward non-Japanese (NJ). This dichotomy is often passed off as something “cultural” (a category people tend to assign anything they can’t understand), but recent events have demonstrated there is in fact a grand design. This design is visible in government policies and public rhetoric, hard-wiring the public into fearing and blaming foreigners.

    Start with the “us” and “them” binary language of official government pronouncements: how “our country” (“wagakuni”) must develop policy for the sake of our “citizens” (“kokumin”) toward foreign “visitors” (rarely “residents”); how foreigners bring discrimination upon themselves, what with their “different languages, religions, and lifestyle customs” an’ all; and how everyone has inalienable human rights in Japan — except the aliens…

    Posted in Articles & Publications, Human Rights, Immigration & Assimilation, Ironies & Hypocrisies, Japanese Government, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Japanese Politics, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 6 Comments »

    Depressed? Consult with Int’l Mental Health Professionals Japan

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 20th December 2007

    Feeling down this holiday season? Consult if necessary with International Mental Health Professionals Japan–a volunteer group of certified professionals offering a range of recognized theraputic approaches, for the treatment of relationship issues, stress, anxiety, depression, abuse, cross-cultural issues, children’s emotional and educational problems, and many other issues. Many members also offer phone counseling. Given the state of mental health services in this country (generally pretty lousy; most Japanese quasi-“counselors” will probably unhelpfully attribute any mental issue involving a NJ to a matter of “cultural differences”, and Japan doesn’t even have certifications for clinical psychologists), this group is a boon. Check it out if you or one of your friends needs help.

    Posted in Cultural Issue, Good News, Tangents | 4 Comments »

    Japan Today: Naturalized Chinese sues Hitachi for contract nonrenewal

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 19th December 2007

    Hi Blog. Here’s another lawsuit of note (sorry for not seeing it sooner). Note the errroneous headline. This person is not a Chinese worker. She is a naturalized Japanese citizen, therefore a Japanese. Bishibashi for the copy editor (and the translation is pretty hokey too). Quick comment follows article. =================================== Hitachi sued by Chinese worker […]

    Posted in Labor issues, Lawsuits | 2 Comments »

    Yomiuri: GOJ to forbid employers from confiscating NJ passports

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 19th December 2007

    After much trouble with employers confiscating NJ worker passports (held as a Sword of Damocles to abuse workers), the GOJ is finally making it expressly illegal. About time–the passport is the property of the issuing government, and not something a foreign government (or another person) can impound indefinitely. The fact that it’s been used as a weapon to keep the foreign laborer in line for so long speaks volumes about the GOJ’s will to protect the imported laborer’s rights after he or she got here. Glad this is finally coming on the books. Now let’s hope it gets enforced.

    Posted in Good News, Human Rights, Japanese Government, Labor issues, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 1 Comment »

    読売:パスポート預かり禁止…外国人研修生の保護強化

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 19th December 2007

    読売:外国人研修・技能実習制度が、安価な労働力として外国人を雇用する隠れみのとして使われていると指摘される問題で、法務省は17日、受け入れ企業などを対象とした同制度に関する新たな運用指針をまとめた。

    Posted in Japanese Government, Labor issues, 日本語 | No Comments »

    DEBITO.ORG PODCAST DEC 19, 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 18th December 2007

    1) Debito’s latest Japan Times Column, which came out on December 18, 2007, on the beginning of the end: How Japan’s xenophobia and closed-mindedness towards the outside world is now clearly not only hurting non-Japanese residents, but also destroying Japan for everyone–putting its very position as Asia’s leader and representative in jeopardy.

    2) James Fallows of the Atlantic Monthly writes more poignantly and succinctly on what’s wrong with fingerprinting at Japan’s border than Debito could ever hope to.

    3) TV personality and music aficionado Peter Barakan is attacked by an unknown assailant in public–he and his hosts at a speech are pepper-sprayed, in a clearly-planned assault with even a rented getaway car. Even though the police track down the car, the spray, and even a person inside, no arrests are made!

    Posted in Podcasts | 1 Comment »

    Himu Case: Tokyo District Court orders Sankei Shinbun to pay NJ damages for reporting erroneous al-Qaeda link

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 18th December 2007

    Some good news for a change: A Bangladeshi by the name of Islam Himu was accused during the al-Qaeda Scare of 2005 of being part of a terrorist cell. And the media, particularly the Sankei, reported him by name as such. Detained for more than a month by the cops, he emerged to find his reputation in tatters, his business rent asunder, and his life irrevocably changed. This is why you don’t report rumor as fact in the established media. And as we saw in the Sasebo Shootings a few days ago, the papers and the powers that be won’t take reponsibility even when they get it wrong and destroy somebody’s life. So Mr Himu sued the Sankei. And won. Congratulations. A good precedent. Now if only could get the Japanese police to take responsibility when they overdo things. Well, we can dream. News article, referential Japan Times piece, and other background on Debito.org follows.

    Posted in Good News, Human Rights, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Lawsuits, Media | 2 Comments »

    アルカイダ報道:産経新聞に330万円賠償命令 東京地裁

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 18th December 2007

    毎日:国際テロ組織アルカイダと関係があると実名報道され名誉を傷付けられたとして、バングラデシュ国籍の会社社長、イスラム・モハメッド・ヒムさん(37)=埼玉県戸田市=らが産経新聞社に330万円の賠償を求めた訴訟で東京地裁は10日、全額支払いを命じた。秋吉仁美裁判長は「慎重な裏付け取材を続ける必要があった。少なくとも実名報道は妥当ではない」と指摘した。 

    Posted in Human Rights, Lawsuits, Media, 日本語 | No Comments »

    Mainichi Poll: 63% of Japanese favor immigration of unskilled foreign laborers

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 18th December 2007

    Hi Blog. I had a column in the Japan Times today talking about the mysterious perception gap between friendly, welcoming Japanese people, and a government which is expressly xenophobic and increasingly antipathetic towards foreigners. As further fodder for that claim, look at this interesting poll, where the majority of people aren’t falling for the media- […]

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese Government, Labor issues, Media | 2 Comments »

    毎日新聞世論調査:外国人労働者容認63% 雇用悪化に懸念も

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 18th December 2007

    毎日:労働力不足の分野では、外国人の単純労働者を受け入れてもよいと考える人が63%いることが、毎日新聞の全国世論調査(電話)で明らかになった。政府は、単純労働者を認めない方針だが、労働力不足の分野で容認する人が半数を超えていた。しかし、日本人の雇用に悪影響があるなどの理由で、受け入れに反対する人も31%あり、方針の転換に慎重な人たちも少なくない。

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Labor issues, 日本語 | No Comments »

    Steve King on Gaijin Carding experience: Racially-Profiling Japanese citizens too? Plus his protest letter to JNTO

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 17th December 2007

    Here’s a great little report from friend Steve King, on how he dealt with gaijin-carding police (and very well, too, to my mind). Great story, and questions asked properly and to the letter. Don’t make a racially-profiling J cop’s job easier. Make sure you let them know you know your rights. Interestingly enough, Steve’s cop indicated that he would be carding Japanese citizens too. This is actually illegal under Japanese Law for citizens unless there is probable cause, so it’s probably a lie. But if a representative of the almighty police in this country are becoming that insistent, I guess when it happens to me (and you just know it’s going to, again), it’s going be worked out down at the Cop Shop… Ulp. Anyway, Steve’s report, and protest letter to the JNTO follows.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 27 Comments »

    Search for Lindsay Ann Hawker’s suspected killer goes on–at grassroots level

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 17th December 2007

    Article from the Japan Times on how the NJ grassroots are trying to do what the J cops couldn’t do themselves–catch suspected killer Ichihashi Tatsuya (on the lam since March 2007) through leafletting and awareness-raising campaigns. Bravo. And if you’d like to buy a T-shirt publicizing Ichihashi’s face, see link from Debito.org here.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Japanese police/Foreign crime | 1 Comment »

    DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER DECEMBER 16, 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 16th December 2007

    1) MY NEXT COLUMN IN THE JAPAN TIMES DEC 18 2007
    ON HOW XENOPHOBIA AND SHORT-SIGHTED POLICYMAKING IS DESTROYING JAPAN

    2) SASEBO GYM SHOOTING: SOME MEDIA SPECULATES THAT A NJ DID IT.
    WRONGLY. YET NO RETRACTION.
    3) TV TARENTO PETER BARAKAN ATTACKED, PREMEDITATED TEARGASSING–
    WITH RESPONSE FROM PETER HIMSELF
    4) THE AUSTRALIAN/JAPAN TODAY ON KANAGAWA POLICE RAPE CASE LAWSUIT LOSS
    5) MEDIOCRE ECONOMIST SURVEY ON JAPAN BUSINESS DEC 1 2007
    6) MAINICHI WAIWAI: HOMI DANCHI AND JAPANESE-BRAZILIAN FRICTIONS IN AICHI
    7) ALBERTO FUJIMORI REALLY GETS HIS–6 YEARS’ PRISON; AND THAT’S NOT ALL
    8) UN UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS 60TH ANNIVERSARY DEC 10, 2007

    …and finally…
    9) DEBITO.ORG PODCAST DEC 8, 2007
    with links to more than two months’ of previous podcasts…

    Posted in Newsletters | No Comments »

    佐世保銃乱射事件:「外国人容疑者」報道の撤回を要求したい

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 16th December 2007

    近日のニュースので佐世保銃乱射事件の件ですが、容疑者はかなり「外国人のようだった」と報道されましたね。数多くのメディアはそんな風評を流布しなかったが、NTV、産經新聞、毎日新聞は間違えて報道しました。結局日本人の馬込容疑者になったものの、きょうあたりでは一切撤回がありません。殆どのメディア局が慎重に報道してくれてありがとうございました。但し、佐世保が現場で、容疑者の身長(顔は見えなかった)と迷彩服のみで、外国人・黒人・外国人ストーカーと早合点しました。産經、毎日、NTVと福島章氏はこの報道で社会ダメージを与えることがありえると認識してほしいです。責任を取って撤回して下さい。

    Posted in Japanese police/Foreign crime, Media, Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | 2 Comments »

    Sasebo Gym Shooting: Some media speculates that a NJ did it

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 15th December 2007

    The media this time was very good about the recent shootings in Sasebo, Kyushu, where a tall perp entered a gym and shot several people. But some media were quick to speculate that a gaijin or a black person dunnit, based upon how tall the perp was (and the fact that Sasebo has a US military base)–with information about an alleged stalking and a personality profile from a Sophia U prof that he was being influenced all the recent shootings in the USA! Don’t hold your breath for any retractions. The Mainichi certainly hasn’t in its follow-up reporting…

    Posted in Japanese police/Foreign crime, Media, Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | 6 Comments »

    MG International ballet school in Tokyo Azabu refuses Pakistani child–with responses from school & people who were refused

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 14th December 2007

    Hi Blog. Report from Ms Amira Rahman, the wife of a foreign diplomat, Mr Rahman Hamid, Commerce Section, Embassy of Pakistan in Tokyo, who received a terrible shock when trying to enroll their 3-year-old daughter in a Tokyo ballet school. Letter of protest from the Pakistani Embassy (click on image to expand in browser): Report […]

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Exclusionism, Ironies & Hypocrisies, Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | 40 Comments »

    Mediocre Economist Survey on Japan Business Dec 1 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 14th December 2007

    The Economist Newsmagazine had a 14-page Survey on Japanese Business in their Dec 1, 2007 issue. It’s pretty crappy. Not only does the author overstretch a “hybrid car” metaphor to describe Japan’s economy, he even contrasts it with some kind of “Anglo-Saxon capitalism” (as if there is such a clear contrast or even such a concrete economic model). He winds up making what could have been an interesting survey into a graduate-school term paper. Feels like he swallowed the lines fed him by the GOJ Gaijin Handlers, that Japan’s economics and business practices are that transparent and quantifiable. He also seems to have answered my past complaint that The Economist ignores foreign workers whenever they talk about Japan’s demographics. One line–only one–is included in the 14-page Survey saying immigration “is not culturally acceptable in Japan”. Relegating things beyond one’s own ability to understand as a matter of “culture” is the lazy person’s analytical approach. Critique and links to the Survey articles included.

    Posted in Cultural Issue, Immigration & Assimilation, Labor issues, Media | 1 Comment »

    Mainichi Waiwai: Homi Danchi and Japanese-Brazilian frictions in Aichi

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 13th December 2007

    Mainichi Waiwai: “”All the Japanese ever do is complain about us,” a Japanese-Brazilian resident of the Homi Danchi housing estate tells Spa! “They don’t accept us at all. We try to greet them and they just ignore us. They don’t want to have anything to do with us.” And here’s where Homi can serve as a harbinger. Danchi housing estates across Japan are losing their inhabitants as the country’s population shrinks. Japan’s current population of 126 million is estimated to drop below 100 million by 2050 unless something is done. More than likely, foreigners are going to be needed to make up for the lost 20-odd million. More and more public housing estates are going to become like Homi, where over half the current 8,000 inhabitants are non-Japanese.”

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation | 6 Comments »

    Debito.org Podcast Dec 8, 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 13th December 2007

    Debito.org Podcast for December 8, 2007: 1) ”JINKEN SHUUKAN”: DEC 4-10 HUMAN RIGHTS WEEK IN JAPAN–WHAT THE OFFICIAL GOALS ARE FOR THIS GOJ-SPONSORED EVENT, AND HOW THEY’RE FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED. 2) RACIAL PROFILING AT TOYOKO INN HIROSAKI, PART AND PARCEL OF TOYOKO INN’S NASTINESS TOWARDS NON-JAPANESE AND WHEELCHAIR CUSTOMERS. SUGGEST A BOYCOTT.

    Posted in Podcasts | 1 Comment »

    Alberto Fujimori really gets his–6 years’ prison; and that’s not all

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 12th December 2007

    Several news articles on former Peruvian dictator Alberto Fujimori, who took refuge in Japan as a “citizen” for five years before buggering off to Chile, on his eventual sentencing to 6 years’ prison on some charges (more charges to come)–with a little something on what this means for the world’s dictators on the lam. A good precedent.

    Posted in Ironies & Hypocrisies, Lawsuits | 7 Comments »

    UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights 60th Anniversary Dec 10, 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 12th December 2007

    The freedoms upheld in the historic United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights must be enjoyed by everyone, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Dec 10, 2007 on the occasion of Human Rights Day… The UN’s independent rights experts marked the Day with a call for the elimination of the twin scourges of discrimination and exclusion. “Discrimination continues to distort the economic, social and political contours of societies,” the UN special procedures mandate holders – ranging from rapporteurs and experts to working groups – said in a joint statement. “Individuals and communities face discrimination and exclusion on the basis of their race, ethnicity, religion, language, sex or sexual orientation amongst many other grounds.” The group emphasized that if left unchecked, the consequences of discrimination and exclusion “can begin to create fault lines within society between those who have full rights, justice and dignity respected, and those who do not.”

    Posted in Human Rights, United Nations | 1 Comment »

    The Australian/Japan Today on Kanagawa Police rape case lawsuit loss

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 11th December 2007

    Re Kanagawa Police rape case investigation: “At the [police] station, she says, she was denied medical treatment during the first six hours, though bruised, scraped and suffering a whiplash injury from the force of the assault. The attitude of the policemen throughout was coarse and mocking. She says no attempt was made by the police to preserve bodily samples as evidence. “Not only the rapist but even the Japanese police contributed to an abridgement of my civil and human rights,” she says. “I begged to be taken to a hospital from the onset of reporting the incident, but my pleas were repeatedly denied.” Even after finally being taken to a nearby hospital about 9 a.m., she says she was returned to the station about midday for a further three hours of questioning… And, at the end of it all, the Kanagawa police decided against charging Deans…

    Posted in Injustice, Ironies & Hypocrisies, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Lawsuits, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 3 Comments »

    Nigerian Idubor loses criminal suit, sentenced to three years for rape despite no material evidence

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 10th December 2007

    The Idubor Case of a rape charge without material evidence has wound up in a conviction for the Nigerian defendant. Three years. They will appeal, but it’s open season–anyone can point the finger at you for rape without grounds, and you’ll do time. Mr Idubor’s wife believes his black Africanness was a factor behind the decision

    Posted in Japanese police/Foreign crime, Lawsuits | 16 Comments »

    TV Tarento Peter Barakan attacked, premeditated teargassing–with response from Peter

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 10th December 2007

    On Dec 8, 2007, famous TV NJ Peter Barakan was attacked with four others by an unknown assailant, who sprayed them with mace shortly before he was to give a speech. The assailant got away in a rental car, meaning the crime was quite premeditated. Is this the next rung on the ladder regarding treatment of NJ in Japan? Peter Barakan himself answers Debito.org, and notes that even though they tracked down the car (with the mace and a driver inside), nobody was arrested. Try doing that to a Japanese public figure and see what happens…

    Posted in Problematic Foreign Treatment | 16 Comments »

    産經新聞:ピーター・バラカンさん襲われる 港区の教会

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 10th December 2007

    産經新聞:2007年12月8日午後1時15分ごろ、東京都港区三田のキリスト教教会「東京キリスト教友会」で、英国人キャスターのピーター・バラカンさん(56)ら男女5人に向 け、男が催涙スプレーのようなものを吹きかけ車で逃走した。全員がのどや目に軽い痛みを訴えたが、すぐに治まった。警視庁三田署が傷害事件として男の行方を追っている。

    Posted in Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | No Comments »

    DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER DECEMBER 10, 2007

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 10th December 2007

    1) TOWARDS FOUNDING A NPO FOR PERMANENT RESIDENTS, NATURALIZED CITIZENS, AND IMMIGRANTS
    2) GOJ “JINKEN SHUUKAN” HUMAN RIGHTS WEEK AND ITS FLAWS
    3) UNHCR DISMAYED BY SECRET DEATH PENALTY OF CONVICTS
    ALSO TRYING TO PUT A BRAVE FACE ON JAPAN’S REJECTION OF REFUGEES
    4) LITTLE BLACK SAMBO & GOLLIWOG DOLLS ON SALE AT RAINFOREST CAFE, NEAR DISNEYLAND
    5) TOYOKO INN’S RACIAL PROFILING, PROTEST LETTER, AND SUGGESTED BOYCOTT
    6) FUN FACTS: DIVORCE RISING, WORKFORCE TO PLUMMET, JAPAN’S MINUS GDP GROWTH,
    AND 39% OF DIETMEMBER SEATS INHERITED
    7) MORE ON NJ FINGERPRINTING:
    CHUUGOKU SHINBUN, HOKKAIDO SHINBUN, DER SPIEGEL, NEWSWEEK, THE ECONOMIST,
    THE JAPAN TIMES, THE MANITOBAN, AND JAMES FALLOWS OF THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY
    PLULS ANONYMOUS ON SHINAGAWA FINGERPRINT PREREGISTRATION: A FARCE
    8) IRONY: JAPAN POST CREATING “YOKOSO JAPAN” STAMPS. WITH DOMESTIC POST VALUE ONLY!
    9) JAPAN TIMES PREZ OGASAWARA INTERVIEWED ON FUTURE OF PRINT MEDIA IN JAPAN
    and finally…

    10) ARUDOU DEBITO DOING NEW BOOK TOUR IN MARCH 2008. DROP BY AND SPEAK?

    Posted in Newsletters | 1 Comment »

    「ガイジン、パスポート見せろ」を言う東横インの重田社長に改善要請文

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 9th December 2007

    「外見・人種・国籍を問わない顧客対応の改善を再び求めます」を言う東横インの重田社長に改善要請文。改善要請:1)現在の法律上、身分証は観光客(つまり日本に住所を持たない人のみ)には該当すると承知すること。
    2)外国人に見える顧客の場合、法律の通り、日本国内の住所の有無を把握し、日本人客と同様にチェックインの待遇をすること(要は、身分証は不必要だと承知すること)。
    3)全支店・全社員にこういう事実を啓発すること。
    4)御社東横インはビジネスホテルチェーンとして、これからどうするか、特に、どうやって外国人に見える顧客の対応を改善するのかと、内容証明で文書上お知らせ下さい。
    (2008年1月12日現在:一ヶ月間が経過しても、東横インから返事は一切ございません。)

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Problematic Foreign Treatment, 日本語 | 2 Comments »

    UN News: UNHCR dismayed by secret death penalty of J convicts

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 9th December 2007

    Tangental to Debito.org, but UN News: “Japan is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which legally obligates States Parties to ensure strict safeguards when applying the death penalty. It is widely accepted that [capital punishment] executions cannot be carried out in secret and without warning, as this could be seen as inhuman punishment and treatment under the ICCPR.” And this is what Justice Minister Hatoyama Kunio was referring to recently about the higher value placed on life in Japan than the West?

    Posted in Human Rights, Ironies & Hypocrisies, Japanese Government, Tangents, United Nations | 11 Comments »

    Dream: “Japan is a Hugh Grant society.” Continue this story, everyone.

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 9th December 2007

    Good morning, Blog. It’s not like me to put dreams up on this blog (except maybe the pipe dreams, like a Japan with a law against racial discrimination ), but I just had such a zinger that I thought I’d put it up. And give readers a chance to complete the story themselves in the […]

    Posted in Humor, Tangents | No Comments »

    Arudou Debito’s new book tour March 2008. Want me to come speak?

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th December 2007

    News of my upcoming tour around Japan between March 17 to 31, to promote my next (co-authored) book–“GUIDEBOOOK FOR NEWCOMERS”. Its goal: To help non-Japanese entrants become residents and immigrants. Want to know more? Contact me. Want me to come speak? Ditto.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Articles & Publications, Immigration & Assimilation, Speech materials | 2 Comments »

    Fun Facts #9: Divorce, Population decrease, Japan’s minus GDP growth, and inherited Nat’l Diet member seats

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th December 2007

    Fun stats showing a leap in Japan’s divorce rate (as predicted), a predicted drop in Japan’s labor force, a more impressive drop Japan’s GDP over the past ten years (in contrast with the rest of the developed world), and one reason why the system is breaking down–nearly 40% of the parliament is second-or third-generation (or more) Dietmembers, meaning Japan’s legislature is a peerage masquerading as a legislature.

    Posted in Fun Facts, Japanese Government, Labor issues | 4 Comments »

    Hokkaido Shinbun Editorial and article on NJ Fingerprinting Debacle

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th December 2007

    Hi Blog. Finally got around to translating this, sorry for the wait. Two articles from the Hokkaido Shinbun, Japan’s largest regional newspaper with near-monopoly readership in Hokkaido. Despite trying to sit on the fence when it came to The Otaru “Japanese Only” Onsens Case (1999-2005), this time they come out quite clearly with misgivings about […]

    Posted in Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Human Rights, Japanese Government, Media | 3 Comments »

    北海道新聞:外国人指紋採取政策再実施:社説「人権への思慮に欠ける」韓国客不快感も

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th December 2007

    北海道新聞は入国する外国人指紋採取政策の再実施について批判を言う。人権問題であり、海外での憤りにも言及。

    Posted in Fingerprinting, Targeting, Tracking NJ, Media, 日本語 | No Comments »

    Created Yahoogroup for forming NPO for Immigrants, Permanent Residents, and Naturalized Citizens

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 7th December 2007

    Just created a yahoogroup for the forming NPO “Foreign Residents And Naturalized Citizens Association (Japan)” (FRANCA). Join if you’re serious about pushing for the rights and interests of NJ in an official capacity.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings | 1 Comment »

    J Times: UNHCR’s Guterres bravely spins on Japan’s exclusionary refugee policy

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 7th December 2007

    Take our money, keep your people. UNHCR: “Japan was the UNHCR’s third-largest donor country in 2006, with a $75 million (¥8.1 billion) contribution, after being the second-largest donor for eight years through 2005. However, the number of people granted refugee status in Japan remains small. In 2006, the government recognized only 34 people as refugees, compared with 23,296 in the U.S. and 6,330 in Britain.”

    Posted in Exclusionism, Human Rights, Japanese Government, United Nations | 1 Comment »