Nagoya anonymous neighborhood poster warning of crime that “may have been committed by foreigners”: vigilantism that should be officially discouraged, but no.


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Hi Blog.  The people screaming “foreign crime” are at it again.  This time, it’s a danchi in Nagoya, and instead of the police being credited, it’s anonymous vigilantes.  Read on.  Courtesy of SM and PC:


Comment from submitters:

“This notification was in my mailbox this morning… It says that there were a number of burglaries in my neighborhood the other day & it is believed that the criminal is a foreigner and to be careful about taking precautions…

“My first thought: how do they know it was a foreigner?!? My second thought was: what kind of message does this give to the children who live here?

“Is it only me that thinks this smacks of discrimination?”

The flyer reads (translation by Debito):





Today (January 29, 2016), there were several break-ins at our apartment complex.

It is thought that the culprits were foreigners, and there is a danger of them returning to commit more crimes.

Anti-crime measures by each family are a matter of course, but it is also very important for residents to watch out for each other and ask around.

Be on guard at all times.


COMMENT:  I’m not sure which is worse:  The thefts themselves, the anonymous warning, or the accusation that foreigners are behind it.  Especially given that theft is the most common crime in Japan by far and it is almost always committed by Japanese.  Again, these sorts of vigilante moves without anyone taking responsibility for spreading rumors are precisely what stir up passions and target people (sometimes with fatal consequences).  This should be discouraged by the authorities, but unfortunately it isn’t.  In fact, it’s precisely the same tactics the Japanese police use (see Arudou “Embedded Racism” Ch. 7).  Dr. ARUDOU, Debito

6 comments on “Nagoya anonymous neighborhood poster warning of crime that “may have been committed by foreigners”: vigilantism that should be officially discouraged, but no.

  • Isn’t this hate speech?
    Someone takes it into their head to anonymously inform all of the submitters neighbors that crimes are being committed by ‘gaijin’ with no proof what-so-ever. No facts. No accountability. Submitters neighbors all see him/her tarred with the same brush.
    Looks like hate speech to me.

  • Debito rightfully filed this under “hate speech,” among other headings. I think that the combination of the content and the failure of the posters to put even the name of an organization on the flier put it in that category. I would suspect that the help of persons in the community (that is, Japanese people living in the danchi or in the larger community) might be enlisted to publicly criticize this attempt at fear mongering. I’m writing from Kumamoto where I know I could find Japanese people who would help me denounce this kind of activity.

  • OnceAGaijinAlwaysAGaijin says:

    The Japanese commit 99% of burglaries, so it’s probably a foreigner.


    We must guard ours homes, us peace-loving, law-abiding, omotenashi Yamato-jin, against more invasions and violations by the gaijin!

  • When they say foreigners. I think they mean “Koreans” who are thought of as committing the majority of crimes in Japan.

    — I doubt it. More likely (see Embedded Racism Ch. 7) they mean Chinese. But it’s all speculation in any case.

  • Which is why the Japanese robbers PRETEND to be foreigners: speaking “katakana Japanese” with fake “foreigner accents”, when committing crimes.


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