XY: My experience with a Harajuku shop keeper – “F*ckin Foreigner kill” racist signs and threatened violence

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Hi Blog. We’ve covered this “F*ckin Foreigner kill” Harajuku store called “Richards” before on Debito.org, and obviously media attention hasn’t deterred this nasty shop from putting up nasty anti-foreigner signs. Now, according to customer [whom I will anonymize as XY], the manager bullied her as a customer with verbal abuse and threatened her with violence. And the local police refused to do anything about it. This is beyond the pale, and XY intends to fight it. Good for her, and Debito.org puts this up as a matter of record at her request to draw attention to the issue. Dr. Debito Arudou

Richards Harajuku Maruichi Blog. 1F, 1 Chome-6-11 Jingūmae, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 150-0001
Phone:  03-5410-0069

////////////////////////////////////////////////
From: XY
Subject: My experience with a Harajuku shop keeper – racist signs and threatened violence
Date: December 19, 2017
To: debito@debito.org

Hi Debito,
I’m a long-term resident of Japan and I’m writing to you to share and get you to share my encounter yesterday with a racist shopkeeper in Takeshita dori in Harajuku.

It started with racist signs and ended with him threatening me with violence.

Sample signs (dated December 18, 2017):


Full report:
===========================

This happened to me today – my experience with a racist violent shopkeeper in the center of Tokyo’s busiest tourist town.
Warning … horrible language- completely NSFW or children.

Today I went to Harajuku and while I was there I did a little shopping. I went to buy a cute bag in this shop in Takeshita dori and realised that the shop had startlingly crude insulting signs up aimed at foreigners (non- Japanese).

I originally thought that it might have been because of an ignorance of English, but when I spoke to the shop keeper he said “Nihon wa jiyu na Kuni” (Japan is a free country) and I realised he meant every word.

Now I understand that he was getting annoyed that people were taking photos and not buying things, but that level of insulting hate driven language is never okay, and especially not in a place where children may go.

I even told him that I was buying it for my child, and that I would have brought my child there… and it was not something that a child should be exposed to. He didn’t care.

At that point I decided that there was no way I was going to spend any money in his shop, and anything I bought there would just feel bad so I told him that I no longer wanted the bag.

He cursed me out for being cheap and wasting his time (although in fact I was going to buy the bag and already had my money out).

Later after I had finished my other business I decided to get photos of the signs so I could publicize his nastiness, so I went back to the shop and took photos.
He yelled at me to stop taking photos and I told him I was only taking photos of the signs and not of his merchandise.

Then he grabbed something and went to hit me with it.
I screamed in shock and ran out of the shop.

Totally shaken by this experience I decided to walk down to the large police station around the corner. I wanted to make a report because I felt it needed to be on record.
The police refused to take a report and told me I should call 110 next time.

UPDATE DEC 28: I have realised that the police insistence I give the exact address before they could make a report was most likely a measure to deflect me. I had a photo of the shop front with the shop name clearly written which I showed to them.

I was already appalled by his signs, but then when he topped it off with attempted assault made me worry about what else he has done to foreign tourists or what he will do.
I’m amazed that the local business groups aren’t doing anything to stop him ruining their image with foreign visitors.

===========================

I’ve made this report public so that it can be shared, and I am giving everyone permission to share and use it.

I’m also happy to answer questions and do what needs to be done to get the word out and stand up to a bully like him.

I’m glad you are here fighting the fight for all of us. It needs to be done and I intend to fight this.

Sincerely,
XY

//////////////////
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41 comments on “XY: My experience with a Harajuku shop keeper – “F*ckin Foreigner kill” racist signs and threatened violence

  • Ah yes, those ‘hate-speech’ laws are really kicking ass, ain’t they?
    And let’s give a round of applause to the J-cops for failing to protect someone of NJ birth, refusing to let her report a violent crime, and in doing so keeping Japan’s crime stats oh so low, because, y’know, ‘Japan is safety country’.

    • Not letting her report the crime is just ludicrous. Not surprising considering the Japanese police of course, but still just disgusting.

      • The Signs are in English and the cops (can claim they) don’t understand English.
        Engrish is up for grabs as a symbol of “cool” regardless of the meaning. “Kill” is seen as “punk”. Ditto the F Word. Could be why the Indo Chinese mentioned on XY’s thread arent supportive either. Plus theyre resentful of so called “White Privilege”? Just speculating.

        Hey. lets be free from our J society imposed shackles on Sundays by swearing in a foreign language. How essentially cowardly and gutless.
        Try starting a punk band called “731” instead and see how you fare. Johnny Rotten was assaulted several times for “God Save the Queen”- this shop keeper and the majority of his customers are just appropriating NJ culture and pathetic, gutless Poseurs.

    • By refusing to allow the report – leaves no evidence of a crime, and one towards a foreigner at that!.
      Ergo, no reporting no evidence., their MO is very clear.

      Which is why all the apologist cite….show me, show me..show me the stats of racism in Japan,…er….hard to when the police don’t even want to officially record it!

  • Surely this illegal hate speech, because it includes the word “Kill” as under the (otherwise toothless)) 2016 law ” it only involves threats to someone’s body and threats to people’s lives.[“.

    But “Kill foreigner”- thats very clear evidence for prosecution.

  • This little Hitler thinks he can do what he likes to foreigners.”Keep Rule” (whose? Yours?) “Petalty10,000” (sic) are how he thinks he can “law down the law” to the powerless Gaijin as a Japanese. Oh, and the fact he wrote “Kill Foreigner” and then got an object to hit Alison with, seemingly following through with this threat.
    Violence to women eh? It doesnt bode well for Omotenashi and the Olympics..
    Call 110.

  • blondeintokyo says:

    I’m going make this guy a listing on Yelp.

    Then post those photos.

    And send the URL to him.

  • “Then he grabbed something and went to hit me with it.” Surely this is attempted assault or similar. Why wouldnt the police do anything? Did Alison stress this part to the police?
    We can’t have people randomly hitting people (customers) with sticks and the like, regardless of nationality.
    So if someone tries to hit you, isnt this at least worth the Koban bobbies coming to have a word, at least? What IS their job exactly?

  • This is pretty “fuckin” terrible. If anything I would say this DOES fall under the hate speech law, and sounds like a threatened assault. No surprise the police did nothing of course, they never seem to do anything when foreigners TRULY need help sadly. Too many friends in dire situations got no help when even worse cases and called for help.

  • Andrew in Saitama says:

    I’ve shared this, and I suspect it is one way of dealing with the issue – if enough people share then it might get picked up by a media outlet.
    Otherwise someone is going to have to bring the owner to the attention of the police (you know, we have reason to believe he is a drug dealer, or the like…) and make him a target of surveillance.

    I do not recommend that someone make up some t-shirts with abusive and/or threatening Japanese, wear them under jackets into the shop and then take off the jackets…
    (But that’s just my recommendation)

  • I read recently where 2 Koreans were having coffee in a starbucks and a patron asked them not to speak in korean, the staff asked her to leave, she refused and the police escorted her out. Imagine the same thing happening in Japan. Ive been told on several occasions to not speak English because “this is Nihon!”
    threatened with violence for being gaijin, taking back damaged products and blamed for it “because I didnt check it” not having items put in a bag at the counter and asked to leave, etc etc.
    I dont make excuses for it anymore; I just apply this test; would a Japanese person do the same thing to another Japanese, and if so, what would be the consequences?

    • Do you mean they asked the Koreans to leave or the J patron telling them off for speaking Korean? I’d like to say this is a recent phenomenon, but thinking back to the 80s, even then there was this Nj bullying going on, at that time acompanied with a smug sense of economic superiority as the Japanese had the money to throw around. That’s gone, but the exclusionist attitudes remain.
      Even then there were the Little Tojos ” I ll report the teacher who doesnt follow the rules to immigration”.
      Even then, your gaijin handler would sometimes “J’splain” to you that you couldnt talk (even in Japanese) to that person as “They dont ‘do”/cater to (dont like) gaijin, Sorry”.
      Even then, this was widely seen as a “lifestyle choice” of the Japanese, that “J-democracy” means the freedom to discriminate.
      Even then, many shops refused foreigners, not to mention the real estate offices. One “nice” agent tried for me, but out of 28 he called, only 4 said “gaijin OK” and these were of course the overpriced ones far from the station etc. What a surprise.
      Even then, the Honored Guests, the Rich Rockstars, would have a great time as “they really look after you” but that dovetails with “handling”. Even they were aware that the special treatment only applied so long as you left when you were supposed to.

      I recall the UN report around the time Bustamente came and met Debito, “Does this mean Japan wants to limit interactions with foreigners?” – a claim strongly denied by the J spokesman. And Alberto Fujimori friend, Ayako Sono’s pro Apartheid comments, decried as likely to make any NJS thinking of working in Japan as “distrustful” of Japan’s motives.

      Distrustful indeed.

  • Hi Debito,

    I’m a long term reader of your excellent website.

    In my opinion, this should go into your annual “Top 10” issues facing NJs.

    – Phil.

  • Do you mean they asked the Koreans to leave or the J patron telling them off for speaking Korean?

    Before you go off on one. It happened in the US, there’s a video of it. A white old woman asks 2 Koreans to stop speaking their disgusting oriental language. A two members of staff, Starbucks I think, tells the old woman that they two can speak whatever language they wish, and asked the old lady to leave the shop because her behavior was discrimination/against Starbucks policy. The old lady refused, so the Starbucks staff called the police, who evicted the old woman. The ironic side of this story is that this episode caused such furor in Korea, a country on par with Japan for xenophobia. Many Koreans, like many Japanese, seem so sensitive to the racial slights thrown their way, yet so so liberal with the racial slurs they throw out to others; never quite understand it. Looking at half of the comments on XY’s thread, who blame her for the signs and treatment she received at the shop, I was shocked how many people condoned the shopkeeper’s action, including a large number of Indonesian Chinese who are always complaining on their own Facebook sites of the discrimination and racism they face in Indonesia at the hands of the native populace majority.

  • The police refused to take a report and told me I should call 110 next time…

    Does anyone know if it’s legal in Japan to record a police encounter?
    Having also a video evidence can further help prove the case of discrimination, especially in the court of public opinion.

    — It is legal.

    • Is there a law that we can refer to or it’s just simply not mentioned anywhere and thus implicitly allowed?
      I’d like to get my arguments ready for when they will invariably start complaining.

  • “Engrish” is oft seen as an “anything goes” languages by Japanese, with frequent F word usage free for all replacing the -masu forms of usually polite Japanese. Time and again I have met Japanese polite in their own language whse opening greeting was “How the Fck are you?!”
    They dont seem to realize that English has its own set of rules and politeness; it isnt an excuse for honour-bound Japanese to suddenly let all their frustrations come out.

    There is also a postmodern meaningless to this as they may think the signs have no “serious” meaning (yeah, to them) just like various other meaningless signs and symbols or bizarre, yet offensive, T shirts written in English in Japan. Many violent, demonic, borderline hate speech messages are “OK” in Japan “because its just fashion dakara”. Ditto Nazi Chic, which was popular in the 80s but still pops up from time to time in J-pap, maybe under the direction of a retrogressive Oyaji producer bereft of new ideas.

    I recall that the American president of Disney was so incensed by the “cultural dumbing down” of English on T Shirts and various products in Japan that he forbade the local Japan office to release anything without a native speaker checking the content, much to their chagrin. Stuff like “Look at the shape of Daisy Duck’s fanny” on a Kid’s product, for instance. Oooops. (I am not making this up).

    The Local J Staff would try to dismiss it as, “It’s for domestic market so its OK”.

    So I think that is partly what is going here with the signs’ content, and possibly the shopkeeper’s attitude. Like a teenager who has suddenly discovered a new vocabulary, he thinks it is “cool” to swear. And because its Engrish, it doesnt matter. He may also think it is somehow “rad” to write Fcckin Foreigner. Maybe he thinks it is “punk”.

    Come to think of it, there was a record shop in East Shinjuku with a similar vibe and attitude, the wannabe punk owner with the mohican shoved me for taking pictures at a public event in 2007, but I digress.

    What is annoying is they think that because its English, it doesnt matter. Hate speech OK if not written in Japanese?

  • realitycheck says:

    Just to focus on the practicalities of bringing this racist clown to wider attention – I’m pretty sure that shop has violated copyright laws by stocking merchandise that liberally rips off labels or copyrighted images from over the world.

    If you have any photos of the merchandise, post it to the relevant companies. They can nail this racist clown for stealing their property.

    Same goes for the other racist clowns around Harajuku/Shibuya etc. They are stealing from licensed distributors by selling products they never asked permission to copy or bought from distributors pirating images etc.

  • Yes, if the same situation happened in Japan that happened to the Koreans at the U.S.starbucks, you would just be told “shoganai” by the staff as you, the gaijin, are ALWAYS to blame, but if you post it and it goes viral, oh my! the outrage. I find this double standard by many Asians to be weird.

  • Rodriguez says:

    Oh wow. I know who you’re talking about. The same guy attacked me when I asked him about the meaning behind the sign. I asked him why he would post hate speech like that, he told me it wasn’t hate speech, I disagreed with him, and then he ran at me and quarterback sacked me. I tried to make a police report, but they woukdn’t accept it since I was moving back to the States a few weeks after it happened, and I “wouldn’t be available,” for contact.

    • Are they still up after the shop closes? I suppose someone passing by at night in a storm could accidentally take one down quickly, if there are no cameras around.
      Happened a few times near where I lived by coincidence, Exclusionary handwritten sign on door kept disappearing so they had to keep rewriting it until one day they stopped. Must’ve been the heavy rain or wind that kind of washed it away.

    • Neverawajin says:

      Right, sings are still up. I’m based not so far from Harajuku. So today felt like going to see this atrocity by myself. Reading from others’ past experience, I was just prepared for anything (even getting into a physical quarrel or so).
      I found the store, took a deep and concerned look at the signs and without hesitation began taking pictures. Immediately, this asian (Although, to my eyes, non-Japanese looking) guy, immediately jumped t out, attempted to grab and stop me… That’s when I gave him my meanest look and said “don’t f,,,ng touch me”. “This is profiling, hate speech and racist”. He automatically shied away and backed off. Then he stared yelling “go out, go out”. I just held my ground and repeated the same words.
      Interestingly, almost immediately, a group of western/white foreigners (all in their 20ish, seemingly acquaintances of him) walked in and also stared to ask me to leave. Yes, the foreigners all ganged up against me! This is NOT something I was expecting… But I held my ground and a fairly loud quarrelling ensued.
      Several things were said. I was called oversensitive (of course) , a hater of Japan, etc. They pointed out how they come often to this place and have no issue with the sings (More than once I demanded them to read fully, which they did so, although reluctantly and trying to omit the word “foreigner”, how silly!) So I pointed out the ridiculous stance of trying to defending such an offensive and racist displays which as “foreigners “also intrinsically affect them
      Another guy mentioned how well they knew the store owner and how “cool” he was; and it was within his rights to post whatever he wanted in his own store. My reply “then it’s within my rights to take the pictures and expose these for others to decide whether that was actually “cool”. Then they all proceeded to sort of hug each other and laugh senselessly and celebrate in a very childish fashion. Jumping and moving in weird ways, like I only remember seeing in children throwing tantrums… Truly surreal, but (if the type of establishments itself haven’t done so) that’s what gave me an idea of the kind of people I was dealing with. Another of these morons’ great arguments were things like: “I don’t care because I love Japan”, “I’m moving in here soon” and “I’m eating sushi today”.
      I was just left speechless by the level of stupidity, beyond naïveness and more on the level of self-brain washing. I finally just left the place, not because I felt treated or intimidated but mainly because of disgust by the pathetic spectacle unfolding before my eyes. Disappointing and sad but at the same time, I guess, very stereotypical of the breed of “human beings” drawn not just to this type of places but to Japan. (Just to add some more context, I’m of Latin American origin).

      • Jim Di Griz says:

        Well, that’s an interesting turn of events. The signs are still up? With the Rugby World Cup this year and Olympics next year, you’d think that if this guy was reported for hate speech and discrimination that the authorities would force him to take his signs down to stop him embarrassing Japan. I guess not. Get ready to be embarrassed.
        As for the NJ who jumped to his protection, were they all white and anglophone?
        I’ve seen the type before; exchange students or JET teachers in Japan for the short term, facing no discrimination in pay/accommodation since it’s all arranged for them, no investment in Japan as a home. They don’t experience Japan’s real institutional racism and don’t care if others do. They get coo’d over for muttering a couple of phrases in Japanese whilst the fluent Nepalese guy working in the combini gets treated like dirt.
        I’ve met the type so many time. ‘I know there’s racism in Japan, but I don’t want to change that because Japan wouldn’t be the same anymore’, one of them actually said to me once. Which belies their understanding that Japan is inherently racist, and that they don’t plan to stick around; it’s just that ‘funny little place’ they wanted to visit. It also acknowledges that Japanese racism and culture are inseparable in their eyes, rather than racism being wholly unnecessary and preventable.
        To expand upon something Dave Spector said once, these people aren’t just ‘pandas’. White anglophone NJ are ‘apex pandas’ who receive way less discrimination that non-whites and non-native English speakers.
        But so many of them think that they are ‘defenders of Japanese culture’ by attacking those who call out racism. New flash; if Japan’s culture can’t defend its own racism, it’s already lost.

      • Baudrillard says:

        Facinating, ” they all proceeded to sort of hug each other and laugh senselessly and celebrate in a very childish fashion. Jumping and moving in weird ways, like I only remember seeing in children throwing tantrums…”
        I ve seen Japanese chinpira wannabes do that, but you say these were Weeaboos. I wonder if they were white supremacists?

        -Another guy mentioned how well they knew the store owner and how “cool” he was

        And that is the only explanation. They are weeaboos, plus they think, as I posted previously, that this guy saying “fkking foreigner” etc is somehow “rad” or “punk”. He is just being punk, whatever in denial stuff they tell themselves. (Theyre like the 21st century version of western friends of Yukio MIshima- though he would never stoop to insult foreigners in this way, he just wanted to revive Japan’s samurai past. I have been there, done that too. I have just done it again a bit, and gone and excused him). Still, that was 50 years ago, and these guys should know better…

        Unless they are neo-white suremacists. See
        https://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/2018/03/07/issues/white-supremacists-japan-love-story/

        They were in their 20s, maybe first time in Asia and all that entails (nudge nudge wink wink). I was a bit like that too, but after a year of discrimination I saw that the dream Japan I was sold and the reality were way different.
        I am curious to know if they were really friends of the shop owner, bypassers, or hied help.

        I respect your bravery, I wouldnt do that though. As stated, they cant hang out there all night, so if you live nearby why not do a late night (not Friday/Sat as those guys might be hanging out there) flyby trial run and then one dark night when it rains hard, maybe one of the signs will mysteriously get dislodged by a force of nature, and disappear.

        Any CC TV?

        if the UN were to receive one of these actual signs, the results could be quite spectacular

        Dont get mad, get even. Thanks again.

      • Baudrillard says:

        Again , I do admire what you did. I personally wouldnt have told the White fanboys what I was doing, I would just say, “Oh, the shop just looks so omoshiroi desu ne, and I guess you think so too” “Oh, Sorry, I didnt know I couldnt take a pic. No probelm, bye”

        I.e The Johnny Depp approach, agree with whatever they say, appear to be on their side, a harmless tourist, and then after getting what you want (the pics), leaving with Mission Accomplished.

        I think because they felt threatened (because they are young, insecure weeaboos) they ganged together like children and played a silly game of oneupmanship. I probably wouldve agreed with them and sexualized the conversation or something, to appear “one of the lads”. They cant resist a turn on.

        They say confrontation doesnt work in Japan, though I do like how you scared off the initial coward owner. When his White Knights came in though, I wouldve switched tack.

        Do you think that wouldve worked? Just trying to get further insights to this fascinating and clear example of Fanboys White Knighting for J rightists when activated, EXACTLY like the cartoon in the aforementioned Dr Debito article in the JT on this subject.

        • Neverawajin says:

          This is my take . “They say confrontation doesnt work in Japan”— Of course that’s what they would want us to believe, so we get this constantly pounding mantra (either explicitly, or subtlety) in order to be governable gaijins. But in my experience, it’s not quite true! Well, not always at least.
          As anything in life, depends on the circumstances, context and environment where conflicts occur. In more educated, professional or formal settings (or maybe most Japanese/Caucasian-fluent-male dynamics), also where there is lots of tatemae and keigo being displayed, maybe subtle and deflective techniques might be more appropriate and effective. But Japan is not only that; most foreigners living here don’t get that benefit. Infact, Japan a country where bullying, intimidation and abuse are rampant, and in such situations, like the case of the moron at Richards, a more “direct and assertive” approach can also work magic in my experience.
          While I never been a super fan of this country, I began coming here about 20 years ago, always on shorts stays either for business or academic purposes ( at which point I was also getting the honorary guest treatment). Then I ended up settling down here later in life (and after living in a couple other countries) largely for pragmatic reasons (marriage) plus a remaining curiosity/allure. At the beginning I bought into the party-line too. I used to socially emasculate myself not just in order to fit in but also out of “consideration” (yet another thing I learned about them is that you rarely get true consideration back– at least not just spontaneously). If they don’t “read in the air” that they have to be polite, anyone can easily become fair game.
          I’m sure there is no need to explain that there’s a great lack of empathy in this society, so in many instances It’s only when you fight, kick and bite back either verbally or even physically (yes, as blunt as that and as counterintuitively as it might sound), that they can actually see the human being struggling in the other side, and will ironically show some consideration and manners. One just has to be carefully of not taking things to the point of no return where they can overcome the initial panic and kamikaze-fight you out to the end.
          Also even when I’ve never been in a position of need (in certain aspects I’m rather privileged) or having to gambaru for financial or other type of stability here, I gravitated towards less professional circles, doing different baitos, mainly in the service industry. And that’s when they got to show their true colors and honne. So I started to find myself enduring all levels of bullying, othering, humiliation, intimidation, direct or subtle racism, and anything they could get away with simply because they thought they could ( and I admit that naively allowed that to happen), because of their confidence of being in their own country, belonging to the dominant group.
          But I learned that wajiins can respond “incredibly well” to abrupt hostility and direct confrontation (rather than logic, reasoning and common sense, as most of “us” would). At some point, out of mere frustration and despair, I began to spontaneously burst out, and to my astonishment and please I was getting very favourable outcomes. This is simply because they are not equipped to respond to such behaviour from the perceived lower ranking individual (either gaijin, inferior race, woman, poorer, junior, you name it). Inside their robotised brains they cannot “compute” how anyone considered of lover rank has the integrity for not “playing the role” and can stand up for himself (I now enjoy seeing their panic expressions when confronted with such situations).
          They are just like children. Inside the ubiquitous erai-hito stern and stoic façade, hides utterly an immature character, incapable to deal ( at least individually) with challenging situation, which are out of the scripted roles of abuser/abused, sempai-cohai, erai hito/commoner, etc. Most of the displayed bravery, deep inside is pure kabuki, as most of the time they don’t possess the inner strength to actually act on their treats.
          The trick is though, to try to avoid to do this openly (although not always, as I’ve been pushed into confrontation right before the eyes of the entire group and with yet great results, where the offender got scared and nullified away), to prevent from being labelled as the problematic individual and get the tribe behaviour kick in. Also better not to try this approach with the j-cops, since this can be risky. Following Debito’s diligently crafted prescriptions on this regards is the most recommended. What I’m talking about is basic daily life counter-bulling psychology. In a way outright simplistic, but I never seen such a thing working so dramatically well as in Japan.

  • @Neverawajin,

    Thanks for your informative post and dare into the world of weirdness Japan, it can be dangerous!

    “Disappointing and sad but at the same time, I guess, very stereotypical of the breed of “human beings” drawn not just to this type of places but to Japan”

    Yeah there are lots of these types in Japan. I once asked one where he was from because I was lost and trying to find this place, and he replied “Why!!?” I said, “Just askin dude” He then asked where I was from, and I replied “States” and he then spit on the ground and scooted off.

    Nothing surprises or bothers me anymore about this place, dude dont take it personally or try to understand it.

    • Jim Di Griz says:

      Yeah, it’s funny how many non-American NJ in Japan blame America for ‘changing’ Japan. The Allies saved the world from Japanese genocide, and in the postwar period (after we gave them democracy and human rights), the Japanese did the rest all by themselves.
      Sorry the Edo era finished dudes. Do those NJ want Japan to be a undeveloped nation again?

    • Neverawajin says:

      It was fun this time actually. I’ve had major stands with police (where I even had up to 20 cops – yeah 20 , not lying here – again ganging up on me profiling and harassing; and illegally trying to search an frisk), bureaucrats, employers, even phone employees and so… but thanks to Debito’s teachings and very useful information, I survived and even, with my incipient Japanese, managed to turn the tables on them in say 60 percent of times. So this was an easy one…

  • Baudrillard says:

    Sorry, one last thing: did he ask you to pay your penalty of 10000 for the photos? The irony is, the signs are attracting more photos than if there were none!

    Put it on Facebook, tourist websites. The more people go and take photos, the more bothersome the phenomenon will become for the owner.

    Surprised the police didnt notice your quarrel, though of course as it was gaijin on gaijin, they couldnt care less.

    • Neverawajin says:

      No mention of such penalty. Actually it took some time to find one of the offensive sign specifically addressing foreigners. I had to venture deep inside this madhouse of a shop, an for a fractions of seconds, I even questioned the authenticity of the original complaints and stories about the place. Now I suspect, he may have moved them to a more concealed area of the shop, perhaps to avoid further confrontations, while still pretending ( in his little punk mind) to stick to his racist ways.

      Also this time my primary objective was to give this racist punk prototype of a bully a bit of him own medicine; to show him there are foreigners here that will not easily and sheepishly tolerated racist demonstrations and whom will not shy way when being either blatantly ( as with this signs ) disrespected and discriminated. Let him know that we can hurt and bite back.

      As everything happened pretty much far into the store, since I never moved back or yielded while being threatened and intimidated, and neither party ended up filing a police report, its very unlikely that the j-cops could have been aware of what happened.


      • ok, minor victory then, as the signs used to be on the street, stinkin’ up Harajuku.
        I suppose he will argue deep in the shop is his private space or some such nonsense.

        So the Fanboys Activated were already hanging out in the shop? I pictured this happening outside.

  • I have found that in Japan they dont like to loose at anything, so instead of taking down the sign, he will just very childishly move it to somewhere else.

    I like your approach; I too have lost any fear of any racism or profiling, I know what it is and dont get flustered by it when confronted. I have several techniques to deal with it for ex. transfer it to somebody else, disarming techniques, shame, etc.

    It helps to be a citizen of another country. That doesnt mean that they will come and help you, but it means I can always leave, even if they deport me. Avoid that at all cost, but I never fear them because thats how things work here..fear and control. there is no grey or civility, its all black and white. Im a gaijin, and guilty by default. Im speaking for me, if somebody else has it better, then good on you.

    • Transfer (the confrontation) onto someone else, ie. Another Japanese so it can be Japanese vs Japanese. Eventually enough Japanese will get fed up of the troublesome issues the racist Japanese cause them all, ruining Japan’s rep, think Urawa Reds “fans” or Hashimoto berating Sakurai, both rightists but Sakurai the one bringing shame on Japan.
      Besides, why should you the NJ have to bother with this? You’re just a tourist here to enjoy the sushi right? Whenever I had a problem with an employer, I just got a lawyer or labor standards deal with it.
      Why ruin my Dreamy Day?!

  • The issue is, that you as a foreigner will almost never be taken seriously if you get upset, and in many cases, I have seen Japanese get a rise out of foreigners getting angry; its a sort of vent or ed escape they rarely get to enjoy. Dont fall for that trap, thats exactly what they want and will just mock an belittle you more. In those situations I just transfer the risk (as they say in project management) to another…lol.

    For example I was recently in a cafe and some old Japanese in a group kept starring and I asked them, why are you looking at me? Look at him…(a Japanese sitting near to me). They continued with..”okotte iru” and were laughing, so I said it again, and the other Japanese began to feel uncomfortable, so then the old group Japanese started feeling uncomfortable and the mood changed.

    Now this a lane is not easy for a newbie to navigate so I dont recommend it in that case, but I know how to do it and I dont fear any retaliation; my reaction is stone cold. Its either I feel uncomfortable or they do, and I rather they do.

  • @Baud

    Your disarming technique works best with belligerent NJ, but not always with Japanese.

  • I don’t get what you mean. I was saying I do not deal with confrontational or aggressive or Japanese directly, I just try to get my J handlers or labor standards etc to deal with any unpleasant situation.

    I am not going to talk to these people. They ruin my dreamy day taking pics in Harajuku of funny signs etc. I am an Honored Guest in Japan…..forever. That’s how they wanted to play it after all, so that is what they are going to get, daily. Regardless of my visa status, because one an NJ always an NJ anyway, right? So if there is any issue at all, talk to the hand, or rather my J manager/Hoshounin.

    Arguably I am doing it the “Japanese way” anyway, i.e. avoiding confrontation, using J handlers..Oh, the irony.

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