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Poster Title: “When you employ a foreigner, check their Zairyuu Card! Employers will also be punished for employing illegal workers!!” Ministry of Justice, Tokyo Regional Immigration Services Bureau. Photo from Hiroo Subway Station, June 16, 2021, courtesy of K on Twitter.
Hi Blog. As you may have heard, the Justice Ministry has enabled the general public to collect your personal data from your “Gaijin Cards” via downloadable app. That’s the subject of my most recent SNA column, out today. Opening:
Visible Minorities: Gaijin Card Reader App Obliterates Privacy
By Debito Arudou
Shingetsu News Agency, June 21, 2021
“Privacy in Japan… is not being seen.”
This quote, usually attributed to former US Ambassador to Japan Edwin O. Reischauer, was made in the context of an overcrowded Japan in his day, used to explain the stark difference between public and private behaviors of Japanese (sneaking off, for example, to love hotels for a bit of private time).
But privacy is taken quite seriously in Japan, especially if it will damage a reputation. Television broadcasts of criminal suspects on perp walks often have their handcuffs blurred, since the person hasn’t been convicted yet. Media reporting on businesses accused of unsavory activities (such as food poisoning or putting up “Japanese Only” signs) often refuse to report their company names so it doesn’t adversely affect their sales. Even people who park their cars in those love hotels may find themselves in a parking garage with curtains, or with their license plates covered up by pieces of plywood provided by the establishment.
So why doesn’t this concern for privacy apply to foreign residents? (Examples of egregious violations of privacy by nationality, contrasted with all the legal protections for citizens, follow. Then we get to the new Gaijin Card Reader App…)
Rest is at http://shingetsunewsagency.com/2021/06/21/visible-minorities-gaijin-card-reader-app-obliterates-privacy/
Debito Arudou, Ph.D.
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26 comments on “My SNA VM Column 23: “Gaijin Card Reader App Obliterates Privacy,” June 21, 2021, on how NJ privacy is of so little concern that the Govt. has enabled anyone to swipe Gaijin Cards”
I downloaded and tried the reader. It reveals exactly everything. I understand they want to control legality of foreigner residents, but this shouldn’t show all data. In most European countries your Social Security number is enough to check your status and of course ID which is secured and easy to check. However nobody can scan to see inside except immigration or Police.
I remember when zo still was working under someone in Japan ( not self employed yet) the coming asked me for my residence card to make a copy to keep in their file. It was maybe 18 years ago. No idea how they do now.
By the way, there is another reader I tried from the app store. It scans even Driver’s License. I could see what is inside that don’t show on DL incl. some sort of identification code. Besides, it scans also MyNumber and Residence Card too.
The app is called “ID リーダー”
Maybe the MOFA aim to use their app in cases such this:
Anyway, it shouldn’t reveal all details. We need presence of the card too because it must be scanned so if we don’t allow it nobody can do it unless the card is lost.
If the employee wants to know my status then I would be happy to scan myself and show them result but not allow them to do it.
Uber Japan referred to prosecutors over hiring of overstayers
June 22, 2021 (Mainichi Japan)
This file photo shows an Uber Eats delivery worker. (Mainichi/Tatsuro Tamaki)
TOKYO (Kyodo) — Police referred Uber Japan Co. and two of its former employees to prosecutors Tuesday for allegedly hiring two Vietnamese overstayers as Uber Eats food delivery staff last year in violation of the country’s immigration control law.
The 47-year-old former representative of Uber Japan and a 36-year-old former worker in charge of its legal compliance are suspected of employing the two overstayers for deliveries between June and August 2020 without checking their visa status.
The former legal compliance officer has admitted to the charge, telling investigators she was “aware of a flaw” in the company’s registration of foreign workers, according to the police.
The former representative, who now heads Uber Eats Japan Inc., has denied the charge, saying she was not informed directly about the matter, they said. The operator of the food delivery service changed from Uber Japan to Uber Eats Japan earlier this year.
A Vietnamese man hired by the company registered on the Uber Eats website with a false identity, using someone else’s residence card that he got through an online broker, according to the police.
The other Vietnamese national has told investigators that Uber accepted overstayers like her, they added.
In 2020, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department found 184 cases involving hiring of overstayers or engaging foreign residents in activities other than those permitted for the Uber Eats delivery service.
Demand for Uber Eats and other food delivery services has been rising amid the coronavirus pandemic, with people requested to stay at home and eateries to close early.
I’m no national fiscal policy expert, but at a glance, it seems incredibly stupid to prosecute and run off two men who risked legal trouble to work in a low-wage, dead-end hourly position in an industry facing constant labor shortages seeking to serve an expanding market demand, especially considering that the nation as a whole is running lower and lower on taxpayers and generating more and more retirees who live off taxpayer-funded social welfare programs. Ah, but what do I know?
‘Dangerous’ foreign company Uber employs ‘dangerous’ overstaying NJ to do crappy jobs Japanese think they’re too good for.
This is just another ‘non-tariff barrier’.
Like the minpaku laws to clamp down on AirBnB, this isn’t about employment law, it’s about protecting moribund Japanese businesses from competition.
If Uber was a Japanese company, they’d have got away with it like all the farmers and factories do.
Uber eats/NJ overstayers.
What do all of these have in common?
get your Tokyo embassy to confirm with the Japanese government that only nominated officials of the J government have the authority to check the details on your ID card, then arrange, if possible, for the reply confirming this to be placed on your embassy’s website…copy this and put it in your wallet for production when asked to show your card
The days of embassies doing the bidding of their expatriate citizens has been coming to a close for many years now. They are almost only concerned with forging trading bonds with their mission countries. I could only imagine my own embassy (Australian) telling me that they don’t provide legal advice and that I should contact a qualified legal advisor in this case. It’s not worth my time to ask.
Sadly, I think you might be right, but when I was employed at one of J’s embassies as a local staff we often used to send letters or Notes Verbale to the hosting govt to ask their position on a range of issues and to clarify their stance. Sometimes the cable from Japan would use the words “sono seigousei ikaga?” when clarification was required by Tokyo. Perhaps the J side goes to bat more resolutely for its nationals than other countries do for theirs. You’d think that at your Embassy in Tokyo there would be young diplomats, Japanese-speaking and knowledgeable about Japan, who are pro-active and prepared to put the J govt on the spot for solid, accurate info to assist their nationals.
Glad I got Faraday cages for my cards and passport. Recommend everyone else do the same.
Thank you for the article. I was wondering who was behind this corporate-state surveillance scheme. The MOJ did exactly the same tactics as FBI and NSA did by offering lucrative contracts to big corporations like Amazon and Google. They reached out to the big telecom mogul whose senior execs are under fire for breaking the COVID protocol by meeting with MIC’s officials. Politicians who order ordinary citizens self-restraint numerous times get busted for doing exactly opposite to what they decide. Making half-hearted apology in the diet and moving on.It’s appalling to see how these elites are weaponizing security and privacy in the way to justify an act of spying on NJ to criminalize those who fall into the cracks.
It looks like Japan is not alone in foreign residents privacy issue. Germany go with their way to track foreigners as well.
Showing the ZairyuuKaado needlessly to: city hall workers, police officers (when not suspected of a crime), and company staff (when not entering a loan contract), results in onlookers deciding to also show their ZairyuuKaado needlessly, with the cumulative effect being: such stupid weak actions set bad precedents which EMBOLDEN many more Japanese citizens to have the nerve to attempt to force “people whose racial appearance leads one to believe they are Non-Japanese citizens” to submit to such “prove you are not an overstaying criminal or else: get out of our city hall / our store” illegal visa checks.
At City Hall, a person goes to buy a print-out of his Juuminhyou, the city hall koumuiin violates Japan’s Constitution by treating that person different based on their racial appearance when the city hall koumuiin requests/demands/implies “need” to see a ZairyuuKaado: “ZairyuuKaado o miseru no ga Hitsuyou”, the submissive person meekly shows it, and onlookers thus assume they too “need” to do so.
At City Hall, I go to buy a print-out of my Juuminhyou, the city hall koumuiin violates Japan’s Constitution by treating me different based on my racial appearance when the city hall koumuiin requests/demands/implies “need” to see a ZairyuuKaado: “ZairyuuKaado o miseru no ga Hitsuyou”, I not only strongly refuse to show it, I strongly call over the Kachō, and teach him and all onlookers about the seishin kutsuu lawsuit situation which that city hall koumuiin created by treating a person different based on race (which is outlawed by the constitution), by assuming my nationality based on my racial appearance and/or accent, by attempting to force a visa-validity check when even police officers need reasonable suspicion of a crime before doing such a thing, by fraudulently claiming that buying a print-out of my Juuminhyou somehow “requires” the showing of my ZairyuuKaado, and to bring it full circle, by NOT using with me the same exact sentence which they use when speaking to “people whose racial appearance leads one to believe they are Japanese citizens”, namely:
“Honnin kakunin dekiru koto o kudasai ~ we just need to see any form of government issued ID, such as: your Driver’s license, or your kokuho card, or your shakai hoken card, nado nado…” while politely pointing to the official list (of the many acceptable ID options) which is sitting right there on the table under the clear plastic.
The fact that the city hall koumuiin use the polite “honnin kakunin dekiru koto o kudasai (while pointing to the many options on the official list)” script for folks who appear racially-Yamato versus the “ZairyuuKaado o miseru no ga Hitsuyou” fraudulent lie for folks who appear racially-non-Yamato, is a violation of Nippon-Koku Kenpō and the Kokka Kōan Iinkai will be seeing this video of both your subordinate’s race-based-discrimination and his fraudulent claim that my I am required by law to show him my ZairyuuKaado to receive a print-out of my Juuminhyou, and the Kokka Kōan Iinkai will also be seeing this video of your reaction so now you must choose:
Either A) you fraudulently continue to claim that the Constitution of Japan ALLOWS koumuiin to treat people differently based on race, and you admit that train your subordinates to demand the ZairyuuKaado from people who appear to be non-Yamato race, or B) you honestly admit loud enough for all these onlookers to hear the truth: “Tashikani, moushiwake arimasen deshita. Juumin ga Juuminhyou o tanomu toki ZairyuuKaado o miseru gimu arimasen. Iro iro na honnin kakunin dekiru koto ga arimasu. Soshite, koumuiin wa: zenbu no juumiin ni onaji serifu o yuu hazu. Donna jinshu o mitemo. Tashikani, moushiwake arimasen deshita.”
The onlookers who are ZairyuuKaado holders thus realize the law allows them to refuse such race-based attempts at visa validity checks, that there are many other non-immigration-related forms of identification which they can use, just like any other resident of Japan, regardless of race and regardless of nationality, and all onlookers thus realize that city hall workers (and people in general, including all company staff [except for when entering into a loan contract]) fraudulently claiming “you NEED to show your Zairyuu Kaado” and coercively threatening to refuse service “for declining to prove visa validity” can lead to a lawsuit for racial discrimination, and thus all the Japanese onlookers decide to think twice next time they are considering making (or telling their subordinates at work to make) any such visa-check demands/threats.
Legally, we NEVER have to prove obtainment or lack of Japanese Citizenship, and we NEVER have to prove we are not overstaying criminals, thus we NEVER have to show our Zairyuu Kaado, except for in very rare situations: when renewing our visa at immigration, or when a police officer actually has reasonable suspicion of you being involved in a crime, or when entering a loan contract.
The “Napoleonic Justice” false myth continues as long as people stupidly weakly voluntarily agree to submit to demands to show proof of not being a criminal.
All one simply needs to do is to strongly remember: the onus of proving criminality is forever firmly on the public worker (and/or on the private person) who is making that defamatory “probable this person is criminal” implication about you.
The majority of people raised in the current culture of Japan are consciously or unconsciously carrying the idea that “people whose racial appearance leads one to believe they are Non-Japanese citizens have a high risk of being a criminal, so we have the right to forcefully coerce all such race-based-suspects into proving their visa-innocence, using threats of service refusal” but the reality is: there is no law requiring you to go along with their false myth propagation of race-based criminality.
Whenever all people (ALL people) are required to show identification (for example, at city hall when buying a copy of one’s Juuminhyou, etc) then you only need to do what all the Japanese citizens do: simply show one of the many forms of identification which Japanese citizens use daily, and strongly DECLINE any subsequent claims that your racial appearance somehow legally deputizes the worker into requiring you to show proof of visa validity.
Simply REFUSE to submit to any race-based “prove you aren’t a criminal, by showing us your Zairyuu Kaado, or get out” threats, and simply show your Driver’s license, or your kokuho card, or your shakai hoken card, or one of the many acceptable forms of identification written on the official list of ID options. 🙂
AnonymousOG, your statement that city hall workers cannot demand the gaijin card appears to be false.
Anyone with access to your 住民票 can see your nationality, and given that they know you’re not a citizen, they are authorized to demand the gaijin card.
Check 入管法施行規則第２６条. HelloWork is also authorized. The only basis for claiming cops can’t demand it is that they usually only do so after racially profiling minorities. The stop is purely racially motivated to begin with and thus illegal.
Nope, absolutely wrong.
There is no law requiring you to show your ZairyuuKaado (which proves your visa validity) to City Hall workers.
You only need to show proof of identification, just like all residents of Japan, regardless of nationality. I never show my ZairyuuKaado to City Hall workers, and I get whatever prints I need.
Why are you submitting to, and now wrongly advising other people to, submit to “visa – prove you aren’t an overstaying criminal – ZairyuuKaado checks” when people can simply show another form of ID?
And it seems you still haven’t noticed the qualification in the law about police: you must show your ZairyuuKaado to police WHEN they are obeying the Police Duties Law which requires having reasonable suspicion that an individual is involved in a crime before even initiating Shokumu Shitsumon.
I’ve already shown that important limiting-qualifier about when you actually have to show and when you don’t, again and again. Please catch up and learn.
The law is actually quite protective, the problem is people who don’t know the law (and people who don’t know what limiting-qualifiers are) and people who suggest “well, the law doesn’t matter, so just voluntarily give up your rights to decline voluntary actions.”
The more people who voluntarily agree to be fooled by the “you must show your ZairyuuKaado whenever requested/demanded/threatened” Myth, the more self-deputized Japanese citizens feel emboldened to make such illegal requests/demands/threats.
Just show something else, and you’ll realize that City Hall simply needs to check your name and address, that’s all, you don’t need to prove to City Hall workers that you aren’t an overstaying criminal, especially since they have no reasonable suspicion to believe you are a criminal in the first place.
Iro iro na Honnin Kakunin dekiru koto ga arimasu.
There are various other actions as well, which City Hall workers sometimes feel emboldened enough to falsely claim “must be done, or else we will refuse to provide … (the print/money which we are required by law to provide.)”
These City Hall workers become emboldened by the fact that: currently, most people’s lack of knowledge, and/or lack of courage to strongly refuse demands, results in most people currently meekly agreeing to voluntarily agree to submit to coercion about many unneeded actions.
For example, when yearly invoking your Kokkaigiin-given-right to receive another year of Kodomo Teate to slightly help support the children whom you live with and support, some City Hall workers will threaten (sometimes in writing to everyone, and sometimes just quietly/unofficially/verbally to just some weak-looking targets, in an effort to reach various illegal secret quotas from above) “Foreigners must show their passport, to prove they didn’t spend any of this Kodomo Teate money abroad last year.”
But nope, legally, foreigners only have to show the same thing as everyone else: the Shotoku Shoumeisho which proves you (plus your spouse, if married) are not rich, which is the only thing you need to prove, to receive Kodomo Teate to help support the children whom you live with and support.
I of course have absolutely refused to show my Passport to the Kodomo Teate division every year for 16 years, and I of course still receive Kodomo Teate every time on time, because they know their threats are lies.
And thanks to my publicly embarrassing them for many years about their illegal coercion attempts to get “gaikokujin” to “show proof that you are not engaging in criminal activity”, the result is a nice success: my City Hall Kodomo Teate division STOPPED writing such “Foreigners must show your passports” threats to everyone. (Again, they probably still quietly make that threat verbally to various weak looking individuals still to this day, but the success is: they don’t put that Passport demand/threat in writing anymore because they know that: legally everyone (regardless of nationality) only needs to show proof of income – the Shotoku Shoumeisho, that’s it.
And the same thing goes for the “Write your MyNumber here, or else we won’t give your Kodomo Teate” lie, also proven false by the fact that I never answer that either, and I still receive my Kodomo Teate every year.
And the same thing goes for the “Write here if you are in the Shakai Hoken or Kokuho program, and write here if you are in the Nenkin program, or we won’t give your Kodomo Teate” lie as well, again proven false by the fact that I never show answer those questions either, and I still receive my Kodomo Teate every year.
Agreeing to answer any voluntary-but-claimed-to-be-mandatory questions posed by City Hall workers, is just as foolish and dangerous as agreeing to answer any voluntary-but-claimed-to-be-mandatory questions posed by police officers, since either way, even though they outright lied to you (or, at the very least, cleverly fooled you with various true statements which led-you-to-mistakenly-INFER that answering was somehow required by law) the fact remains that submitting to such requests/threats/demands for information about yourself causes people major trouble every day, since all those voluntarily-spoken and/or voluntarily-written and/or voluntarily-shown things, can and will be used against you legally, meaning, since you needlessly testified about yourself, it makes their initial fooling you about your rights irrelevant, since you needlessly gave up your right to NOT testify about yourself, so again, legally everything you say to government workers about yourself (which often becomes twisted and misremembered by your the quota-seeking foreigner-hating career-minded government worker who fooled you to answer in the first place) will be used against you.
Back to the “Write here if you are in the Shakai Hoken or Kokuho program, and write here if you are in the Nenkin program, or we won’t give your Kodomo Teate” threat: if you were to meekly answer that, the next step is verbal coercion to SEE your Kokuho/Shakai Hoken number and your Nenkin number, and the next step is they will probably say “Thanks to you (needlessly) giving us those numbers, we have thus discovered you are slightly in arrears in one of those areas, so we’re either going to A) send this Kodomo Teate money directly to the division in area in which you are in arrears, or B) punish you even harder by claiming you will receive absolutely zero Kodomo Teate this year, meaning we aren’t even going to transfer any money to the other divisions at all, we are disapproving your Kodomo Teate for the coming year since we City Hall workers feel (even though there isn’t any Kokkaigiin-enacted law about this yet) that all people (especially you gaikokujin) should be financially punished by the Kodomo Teate division for being late in payments to the Kokuho and/or Nenkin divisions. Hopefully your embarrassment about being late to pay either of those two areas will cause you to not-even-try to appeal our highly-damaging-to-you decision today, which is: we are refusing to approve the coming year’s 60万円 Kodomo Teate which the Kokkaigiin legally guaranteed to you and your wife and your 4 kids, too bad you (needlessly) told us you were in those programs, too bad you (needlessly) showed us your card numbers in those programs, the result of your compliance is: you lose, thank you, come and try again next year (you sucker gaijin).”
And oh yeah, the same thing goes for the “You must sign here, directly under this sentence which says ‘I agree to allow the Kodomo Teate division to access all the other tax-related databases for those other divisions at City Hall’, or we won’t give your Kodomo Teate” lie as well, again proven false by the fact that I never agree to give that permission either, and I still receive my Kodomo Teate every year.
And don’t think they are “altruistically giving” me something which they don’t have to give me. If they COULD refuse to give me the Kodomo Teate, they absolutely WOULD, since that City Hall division hates me (just like all City Hall divisions – with Koumuiin who commit illegal actions/demands/threats, and whom I publicly scold for their illegal coercion attempts – hate me) because I loudly announce to all the “weak targets” who are there around me: essential knowledge-enhancing courage-enhancing facts, such as the fact that as long as you are not rich, and as long as you actually live with and support your kids as well, then City Hall workers can NOT legally threaten to refuse to not give your Kodomo Teate money, regardless of you refusing to show your Passport, regardless of you refusing to tell your MyNumber, regardless of you refusing to answer any questions about whether or not you are enrolled in Kokuho/ShakaiHoken/Nenkin, regardless of you refusing to show card-proof of being enrolled in Kokuho/ShakaiHoken/Nenkin, regardless of you refusing to show your visa-validity-proof-of-not-being-a-criminal-overstayer ZairyuuKaado.
Police officers and City Hall workers and Government workers in general are all trained to fool people as much as possible into submitting to voluntary-requests which are cleverly disguised as unconditional-demands, and they feel fine about such fraudulent coercion, since the end result of their fooling the mass majority of the people they bark orders to, is: they increase their chance of catching a few (0.002% of the general population) criminals each year, and thus they increase their chance of receiving more money over the length of their career.
So, declining ZairyuuKaado checks, and declining all sorts of requests/demands/threats, is not JUST about “No, I decline that voluntary request because you are doing this disproportionately to visible minorities.” It goes far beyond that. Government workers are becoming ever-emboldened-by-the-majority-who-comply to make threats about (voluntary) actions to ALL people in Japan.
Thus, we all, regardless of race, regardless of nationality, need to preserve our rights by invoking and refusing to give up our rights, by declining to do any voluntary actions requested by government officials or requested by company staff.
It’s truly about, “No, I decline that voluntary request because to help maintain the rights of ALL individuals, I decline ALL voluntary requests in which submission is NOT actually required by law.”
Even though my visa is valid, I still refuse all requests to prove that fact.
Even though my taxes are all paid up in full, I still refuse all requests to prove that fact.
Even though I have nothing illegal in my pocket, I still refuse all requests to prove that fact.
Even though I’m not committing any illegal actions, I still refuse all requests to prove that fact.
As always, thank you for your thorough and knowledgeable explanation of the law as we all should know it. I agree with you in every regard. The only reservation I have is with this:
“And it seems you still haven’t noticed the qualification in the law about police: you must show your ZairyuuKaado to police WHEN they are obeying the Police Duties Law which requires having reasonable suspicion that an individual is involved in a crime before even initiating Shokumu Shitsumon.”
This is my understanding as well, but I can easily imagine a scenario where I refuse to show my ID to the police, they arrest me, we take it to court and the court finds that the police had a reasonable suspicion, because I looked like a foreigner and they ‘had reports’ from their superiors that ‘bad foreigners’ were in the area and they should keep an eye out for them. I can so easily see a court leaning that way.
Do you disagree OG?
I wonder how far I would be willing to stand up to the police request now that I am a father and have family to think about.
Joe Jones (Debito’s well-respected legally-knowledgeable friend) successfully declined submitting to a (suspicion-less, thus illegal) Shokumu Shitsumon “Show ID” request and the police admitted:
Google his quote: “This is just shokumu-shitsumon. Technically speaking, it’s totally voluntary.”
Same successful result for Ariel:
Google her quote: “I point-blank asked them (in polite but firm Japanese) if I was required to show them my card. They responded vaguely, but eventually said that it was voluntary.”
Same successful result for Aly Rustom:
Google his quote: “Ok. You can go. I asked to see your ID, and you refused. I can’t make you show it to me. You are free to go.”
And I also successfully declined submitting to a (suspicion-less, thus illegal) Shokumu Shitsumon “Show ID” request, by focusing on the fact that they need suspicion of an individual being involved in a CRIME, BEFORE initiating any questions/requests/demands/threats, and I also scolded the main instigator for not being able to comply with MY demand that HE show HIS Techo (he meekly admitted that he ‘forgot’ it at the police station) thus I scolded him for illegally initiating Shokumu Shitsumon, and for not carrying his Techo, and for even indirectly implying that I had to spend even one second of my time talking to him, I absolutely refused to answer any of their questions about my self/nationality/actions/etc., I simply then moved to the “stopping and talking to you is voluntary so I decline, I’m free to go, already the Koan Iinkan will not forgive your illegal suspicion-less Shokumu Shitsumon and your illegal lack of Techo actions, if you continue to pretend I’m not free to continue walking then this becomes a case of illegal Koukin, and if you then try to force me to go somewhere with you it becomes criminal Shokken Ranyou which has a maximum 10 year prison penalty for police officers who commit that, so I’m not giving you any more of my time, I decline your illegal request for voluntary conversation, I invoke all my rights, most importantly the right to continue walking immediately.” And I walked away, slowly, holding the hands of my two youngest kids, and we entered the bookstore where we had planned to go shopping.
I of course WONDERED (just as you are currently wondering, TJJ [my former headhunter friend?]) if these illegally-acting police officers would have the balls to then illegally move between me and the bookstore to physically stop me from entering the bookstore, and then, I of course also WONDERED if they would have the nerve to try to enter the bookstore and arrest me without an arrest warrant and without having seen any crime (which of course would be an illegal False Arrest, since I didn’t commit any crime.)
Thankfully they didn’t say another word to me, I simply walked away (slowly, to avoid any false claims of running away) I walked away from them and entered the bookstore, while telling my kids the importance of declining voluntary requests, the police officers simply got in their van and drove away (most likely hoping/praying that I wouldn’t file an official report with the Koan Iinkai) and I gained Confidence for Life that I have the ability to successfully decline suspicion-less stops.
Now, as it happens, I have no visa problem, but think about the “overstayers” who are living in Japan peacefully not committing any actual crime (an actual crime needs an actual victim, I don’t consider “overstayers” to be committing any actual crime.)
Imagine a peaceful innocent overstayer like Suraj. If he had ignored the knowledge-lacking courage-lacking people online and in person who give needlessly weak “Just submit to the Shokumu Shitsumon, just show your ZairyuuKaado, once they make that request, that’s it, you’re done for, because if you refuse to admit your nationality, and if you refuse to show your ZairyuuKaado, you will be arrested, there’s nothing you can do, you can’t decline such a request, look here it says in the law ‘you must show to police officers’, and nevermind that ‘when obeying Police Duties law” limiting qualifier which some ‘crazy’ person at Debito.org discovered, nevermind the success stories of all the people who refused to submit to suspicion-less stops, nevermind the fact that we don’t know of anyone who has been imprisioned for declining Shokumu Shitsumon, you simply CAN NOT decline Shokumu Shitsumon stops since you are a foreigner” stupid advice, if he had been blessed with the knowledge that it is totally possible to decline suspicion-less stops, if he had gained the knowledge and the courage which I have gained (by first declining all voluntary requests made by City Hall workers, and then eventually even declining those voluntary requests made by those police officers), Suraj could have walked away from those police officers free as a bird (and actually that action of walking away would again be LEGAL since one is only required to show your ZairyuuKaado to officers who are obeying the Police Duties law which requires suspicion of THAT INDIVIDUAL committing a crime.)
See, not having visa validity is illegal, and lying about yourself to police officers is illegal (so NEVER utter a lie to police officers) but it is perfectly legal to simply decline suspicion-less stops altogether.
Remember the technique of (Japanese citizen who appears racially “foreign”) Joe Jones:
“The standard answer I give cops now is “ごめんなさい、時間がないんです” or a hurried equivalent in English if they address me in English. (It helps that I always tend to walk quickly.) If it is just a pointless spot-check to make numbers, they will let you go on your way. If they seriously suspect you of something, they will insist on stopping you, at which point you can start asking why you are a suspect — but I have never gotten that far in multiple attempted police stops, all of which end with them basically saying “OK, sorry for bothering you.” Even though you technically have a duty (as an alien) to show a passport or gaijin card to cops, they are rarely trying to enforce that particular law, and as long as they don’t dig in their heels you are perfectly free to walk away and say you don’t have time to deal with their silliness.”
(And yes, of course, while I am pleased that Joe Jones has realized that stopping and answering questions is voluntary, so one should simply keep in walking, I of course am disappointed that he hasn’t yet realized (or simply hasn’t yet publicly admitted) that all such suspicion-less Shokumu Shitsumon are always illegal sine they violate Police Duties Law Article 2, and I of course am disappointed that he hasn’t yet realized the existence of the limiting-qualifier “職務の執行に当たり場合” in the Shuutsu Nyuukoku Kanri, Dai 23 Jou.)
Look folks: just as there is no law requiring you to self-incriminate yourself with actions (for example, consenting to answering any questions about yourself, or consenting to a search, or consenting to a urine test, etc, etc.) ever – so too there is no law requiring you to self-incriminate yourself with words (for example, about your nationality) when the Police Duties law Article 2 legally prevents the police officer to start talking to you in the first place.
Folks, if you want to argue in an intellectually honest way, you can tell me “police don’t follow the law, laws mean nothing in this country, I’ve given up on trying to get government workers (and company workers) to obey the laws of Japan, I simply do whatever they say, and I don’t care about the United Nations ICERD Treaty either, even though the Ana Bortz case ruling judge admitted “the U.N. ICERD Treaty is the Supreme Law in Japan” and awarded Ana ¥2 million, and even though the McLean case ruling judge admitted “the constitution of Japan, especially the parts preventing police from committing illegal actions to people, the Japanese constitution protects all foreigners with valid visa validity”, I simply still don’t have faith in the legal system in Japan, the handful of people who received such strong legal wins were just lucky, they are outliers, if you or I try to invoke our rights we’ll just be illegally crushed and no judge will care.”
Fine, if that’s the defeatist attitude which the culture of Japan has caused you to adopt, then that is your choice. You are free to bend over and submit to voluntarily agreeing with the treatment which the majority in Japan dishes out to all visible minorities.
But please don’t say/write/imply “the law requires Foreigners to show their ZairyuuKaado to police officers who are specifically NOT obeying Police Duties laws.”
And please don’t say/write/imply “the law requires Foreigners to show their ZairyuuKaado to City Hall workers who are specifically NOT working in the no-longer-existent GaokokujinToroku division.”
Because every time you propagate those false “Foreigners have no rights” “you have to prove your citizenship and your visa validity whenever asked” “the ZairyuuKaado is the only solid form of ID for a foreigner” myths (as if you were head of the Police training group or something), I am morally obliged to spend my time and energy correcting your false claims about what the law actually says.
Fellow humans: the onus is on the police officers to find reasonable suspicion to believe that YOU specifically are involved in a crime. The onus is NOT on you to prove your innocence to suspicion-less police officers.
So, in this post I shared 3 clear accounts of police officers in Japan admitting to Joe Jones, Ariel, and Aly, that even for people who appear to be NJ: I.D. checks in Japan are still voluntary. And my own experience, since they didn’t arrest me for declining, is account #4.
Where are the accounts of police officers in Japan arresting NJ who declined to show I.D.? Link Please!
After you realize that all suspicion-less I.D. checks are voluntary, the next step is to realize the shocking truth:
All suspicion-less stops in the first place are ILLEGAL. This applies for all individuals 個人 in Japan.
The police officers above admitted the VOLUNTARY part, that is what people in the know call a “limited hang-out.”
A “limited hang-out” is a damage-control tactic used by individuals and groups (police, CIA, etc.) that basically involves pleading guilty to jaywalking in the hopes that the judge won’t notice that you are committing even bigger crimes.
In the above cases, the officers admitted (only after sufficient prodding from decliners like Joe Jones, Aly, Ariel) that all suspicion-less I.D. requests are VOLUNTARY, but the police officers officers did NOT admit is the following fact:
ALL suspicion-less stops in the first place are ILLEGAL.
So the victims above (Joe, Aly, and Ariel) walked away thinking, “I got them to admit it was voluntary, I didn’t give in to their demand to show anything, I won!” but it seems these 3 never realized that the initial stop in the first place was a patently illegal violation of the Police Duties Law.
The Law which makes all suspicion-less stops ILLEGAL is:
“警察官職務執行法 第二条 警察官は、異常な挙動その
Keisatsu Hou, Dai 2 Jou
The limiting qualifier about what kind of police officers you need to show your card to is:
Shuutsu Nyuukoku Kanri, Dai 23 Jou
Step One: Realize that a LEGAL Shokumu Shitsumon I.D. request requires first reasonable suspicion of YOU being involved in a crime.
Step Two: Realize that if they claim on film that they DO have reasonable suspicion of YOU being involved in a crime, then by all means show them (don’t give them, SHOW them) the Zairyuu Kaado (if your visa is valid.) Show, answer no questions about yourself, then go.
You should put the onus on them to say to the camera “We have reasonable suspicion to believe YOU are involved in a crime.”
If they can’t say that officially, for the Koan Iinkai and the Saibankan to hear, then their Shokumu Shitsumon was illegal in the first place, and they know it, which is why they DON’T actually arrest foreign-looking people who simply decline their illegal fishing-for-permission attempts.
Also, I have to correct another mistaken claim above on this page, “If you’re not happy with their explanation and the whole experience, take it up with their superiors at a later date, in person or by correspondence.” Nope, wrong, their superiors will pretend to your face to care and then as soon as you leave they will high-five the illegally acting officers for doing a good job. The head of the police station won’t punish his own officers. That would be breaking the unwritten “blue line” agreement of all police officers to hide the illegalities of other police officers as much as possible. It’s the Koan IInkai whom you need to send proof of the illegal suspicion-less Shokumu Shitsumon to, with of course the proper complaint form written perfectly in legalese by an expensive+successful+connected lawyer, to even have a chance of the police officers being punished.
Also, parting shot: it’s interesting to see this quote on Debito.org by a certain poster:
“16 years in Japan and I’ve never noticed this sort of behaviour [microaggressions in Japan] happening to me. I’ve had a few fist fights with chimpura types in my time, when I was younger, but never experienced this from ordinary Japanese … these passive ‘smile above it’ types on here, have it wrong. Any person behaving like this to me would get a good sly KICK IN THE SHINS at the least, I don’t care who was doing it.”
Wow, so if someone were to be slightly rude-based-on-race to this guy, he has the courage to risk imprisonment+deportation for the criminal act of kicking someone in the shins, but yet, when a City Hall worker commits the act of requesting/demanding (without reasonable suspicion of any crime) that he prove he isn’t a visa-criminal, he strangely does NOT have enough courage to simply place a different form of government-issued identification on the table and say, “This is sufficient.”
Anyway, about City Hall, I suggest folks read my post on this page which shows my success in NEVER showing any City Hall workers (except for the old “外国人登録” division which no longer exists).
And about police officers, I suggest you all begin to gain confidence gradually by first: refusing to allow any City Hall workers to force you into showing that one particular visa-related form of identification, since there are many other IDs which they (have to) accept, and you will be pleased to see you will still get what you need (be it prints or money), and then, once you have done that for a few years, you might then gain the confidence to simply refuse to allow any police officer to fool you into making any statements about your nationality in the first place, by simply focusing on the “voluntary so I decline, I’m free to continue walking” fact, combines with (if the don’t back down immediately) the even more important “suspicion-less stops violate Police Duties Article 2” fact, and even better simply walking past them as they were simply tissue-packet-givers and not even acknowledging their existence in the first place, which is the ultimate effective form of declining. Declining to even stop walking, declining to even hear their sounds. And once you have successfully declined them, using whichever technique you prefer, you will then have confidence to refuse ALL voluntary-requests which various people (government workers, company workers, idiots on the street) immorally disguise-as-demands-coupled-with-threats.
If a 70kg vegetarian like me can successfully decline illegal threats from government workers (be it City Hall or Police Officers), you bigger stronger meat-eating higher-testosterone tough-guys/gals can definitely successfully do it too.
But no matter what, even if you choose to submit to suspicion-less stops by police officers, and even if you choose to submit to suspicion-less visa-checks by City Hall workers, at the very least: stop fooling people into thinking that some law exists which allows police to stop people without suspicion of a crime, and stop fooling people into thinking that some law exists which allows city hall workers to refuse your (non-visa-related) 本人確認できること.
Simply show City Hall your Driver’s license, or your kokuho card, or your shakai hoken card, or one of the many acceptable forms of identification written on the official list of ID options.
PS – little known fact about Japan: if you somehow lost all your forms of ID, yet you need/desire some print-out of something from City Hall (Juuminhyou, etc.), there is a “we don’t mention this to most people” legal technique of proving your identity to City Hall, here it is: you request/demand they send a letter to “your official name” at “your official home address in Japan” and the very next day (or, worst case, within a few days) that letter will arrive to your home and you then take it back to city hall and thus that letter becomes proof that you are who you are, since, according to the logic behind this technique, how else could you receive that letter, and thus suddenly you can demand whatever prints you want/need. Now you readers have all learned yet-another way to prove your identity to city hall, when requesting/demanding prints from them.
Final little present: here is the official list of ID options which they accept from all nationalities and races:
PS – Notice they use my tsuushoumei in all their official letters to me (and official cards as well) (Google: “Kanjify Thyself”.
‘Iro iro na Honnin Kakunin dekiru koto ga arimasu.’
That doesn’t make any grammatical sense and it really brings up another important variable in this whole, ‘shall I show?’, or ‘shall I not show?’ issue. Make sure you have the Japanese language skills, or paperwork at hand, if you’re going to get upset at every racial slight, real or imagined.
Also choose your confrontations carefully and selectively, don’t go off the handle, at every occasion. Get uppity with the police and you’ll soon find yourself spending quite a few hours detained in a koban. It happens / happened with Japanese nationals who have looked ‘foreign’. If the police ask for your id, give it to them at the time of asking, after asking to see and recording their police id, and asking them why you’re being stopped? If you’re not happy with their explanation and the whole experience, take it up with their superiors at a later date, in person or by correspondence.
If you start to get uppity with them, there and then, and refusing their requests on the spot, in bad Japanese, you’re sooner or later going to get trapped in the system and once ensnared, it’s a bugger to get out.
Some advice given on here is quite dangerous for a newbie to Japan and it should come with a health warning – maybe the moderator should opine at times, to give more clarity.
Personally I think people should always keep in their minds that Japan is not a land of the rule of law. It’s a land where the rules are what the rulers say they are. The vagueness in the wordings of Japanese legal statutes are there on purpose and with a purpose.
“Iro iro na ‘Honnin-Kakunin-dekiru-koto’ ga arimasu.’
Scipio doesn’t realize that “本人確認できること” is indeed a set phrase used by people born in Japan, here’s just one of 14,000 results for the exact phrase, even written by a Japanese government worker: https://www.soumu.go.jp/main_content/000382043.pdf
Ctrl+F 本人確認できること (appears on page 8)
There ARE various 本人確認できること, and let’s remember Scipio started this argument by rudely and wrongly claiming Jim was wrong about the fact that there ARE various things which can legally confirm one’s identification, for example when getting prints from City Hall, so it’s time for Scipio to admit he was simply fooled by City Hall workers who lied when they saw his face and demanded he show a very spicific form of ID: the ZairyuuKaado, so it was wrong for Scipio to advise Debito readers to needlessly show their ZairyuuKaado to City Hall workers. The correction clock is waiting, please Scipio, admit you were wrong about the ZairyuuKaado being the “solid ID” required by law to show to show at “your local ku office”
Scipio wrongly started this essential need for us to correct his mistaken advice when he wrote: “the aforementioned institutions [e.g. “your local ku office”] will not offer you their services, without ‘solid’ proof of id. In the case of a non-Japanese, ‘solid’ proof is either your residency card or passport.”
So, now we will see if Scipio is “man enough to admit” (as Scipio rudely and wrongly said about Debito during Scipio’s defense of Clark) that he was wrong when he suggested to Debito readers that they should be showing their ZairyuuKaado needlessly to City Hall workers.
Even the Ministry of Justice’s old Seirei has a limiting qualifier about the only City Hall workers who could (past tense could) request the ZairyuuKaado: WHEN the City Hall public worker is doing “外国人登録” work, a type of City Hall worker which no longer exists, now that is taken care of by Immigration, now the City Hall Shimin-Ka has to treat everyone the same, again: the City Hall 外国人登録 division no longer exists (just like Article 23 of that Seirei has also been deleted) so please Scipio and now HJ, don’t accidentally fool yourself and others into believing “ALL city workers, even those who do NOT work for the now non-existant 外国人登録 division) somehow have the right to demand (using total bluff biteless threats of ‘we won’t print the Shimin-ka paperwork which you are demanding and which you have a legal right to receive’ false threats.
As you can see in my most recent comment on this page, ever since activists like Debito helped legally dismantle the 外国人登録 section at City Hall, ever since we received actual Juuminhyous like every other resident of Japan, I never show City Hall workers my ZairyuuKaado, and I always get what I need from the City Hall workers, be it prints or money.
So please, Scipio (and to a slight extent HJ) it’s time for you to admit you were wrong about the ‘need to show your ZairyuuKaado to City Hall workers’, so we can move on to more important issues.
① Regarding the phrase「色々な『本人確認できること』」がある」— first, yes, it is technically grammatically accurate, but it does not mean “There are various things which can be used to confirm my identity”, as you seem to be strongly implying. 事（こと）refers to abstract (not physical, tangible) “things.”
We see this in words like 考え事, 揉め事, and 心配事.
In the phrase you have created, instead of “things,” a more accurate translation would be “occurrences,” “instances,” or “occasions.” Compare your expression with that expressing an “experience”:「本人確認できたことがある」Literally, “There are instances/occasions (There is an instance/occasion) where I was able to confirm (a person’s) identity.” (= I have confirmed a person’s identity before.)
Physical, tangible things are もの, which is written as 物 for inanimate things (食べ物、飲み物、着物、etc.), and 者 for people or other animate things (怠け者、化け物、何者), usually in a negative context. For example you would call a member of a partner firm 方, but yourself or your coworkers 者.
Further, the link you provided does not corroborate your claim. Quote,
Here, こと acts as 形式名詞 (hence it is written in 平仮名), receiving the verb 使って…確認できる to make a noun phrase. This is basically the Japanese equivalent of the English gerund, so the phrase translates as “By using the electronic certificate on the personal number card and being able to verify the person’s identity…” or, in more natural English, “Because one can use the electronic certificate on the personal number card to verify identity…” Remember, ～によって is usually written in 平仮名, but we can write it ～に因って as well, showing it’s causal meaning.
My personal experience is that the phrase generally used when requesting ID, if not 身分証明書, is 本人確認できる書類（資料、もの）. If you can provide any evidence for your claim, be my guest, but I think you will be hard pressed so to do. Regardless, the one document you did procure does not prove your claim at all.
② Your claim about city hall employees seems to rest on a claim about a now-deleted 第２３条 of an unnamed 政令 (an executive order from the Cabinet).
I have no idea what you’re talking about, but the 出入国管理及び難民認定法 is absolutely extant, enforceable law, and 第２３条件第３項 states 「前二項の外国人（=中長期在留者）は、入国審査官、入国警備官、警察官、海上保安官その他法務省令で定める国又は地方公共団体の職員が、その職務の執行に当たり、これらの規定に規定する旅券、乗員手帳、特定登録者カード、許可書又は在留カード（以下この条において「旅券等」という。）の提示を求めたときは、これを提示しなければならない」
The administrative rules（施行規則）which clarify which public servants qualify under that section are those which I mentioned in my previous section.
Please provide some factual basis for your claims.
— And please be concise, AOG.
I don’t mean to be pedantic, but there is a major difference between 本人確認できること and 本人確認できるもの. “Koto” refers to the ability of proving one’s identity, whereas “mono” refers to documents proving one’s identity . The website you linked to even shows that: “個人番号カードに搭載される電子証明書を使って本人確認できることにより… (By being able to verify your identity using the digital certificate installed on your Individual Number Card…)”.
Look at the Japan Post page for an example of the use of “mono”:
And complain to your embassy if treated unfairly or discourteously because j people overseas do. Ask your embassy to have a diplomat or local staff call up the police and foreign affairs to complain.
Firsy, that MOJ directive which was being discussed does indeed have Article 23 deleted:
Article 23 Deleted”
Which was just a passing noticing of the fact that such MOJ directives (and the actual 国会議員-written actual 法律-Laws which sit legally above those directives) change over time, just like the 外国人登録 division itself was successfully deleted.
Next: of course, when you are initially registering yourself at a new city (thus creating a new Juuminhyou) and when you have them update the visa (permission status) type and validity date fields later, yes, that is a rare time you need to show your ZairyuuKaado evidence, because on those rare particular days you need to prove that new information for them to input it. But when you are simply requesting/demanding Print-outs, this is NOT a case of having to add and thus prove any new information, so this is NOT a case of “Foreigner Registration Related Work”, so one only needs to show what everyone else needs to show: something which can confirm your identity.
Next: even if officially koto is only supposed to be for non-touchable abstract things, in my small city/town, born-in-Japan people (including City Hall workers, my wife and kids) often use koto in that phrase, just as often as mono.
And finally, about the 出入国管理及び難民認定法, you must not have actually read the past discussions about that law, because as I have explained many times, there is a limiting qualifier there (such limiting qualifiers are thankfully put there specifically to limit the government worker to a very rare case of their ability to invoke power) and the limiting qualifier here is: 職務の執行に当たり.
Which means, since the 職務の執行 limits the police to only initiating shokumu shitsumon when they have a reasonable reason to believe you (specifically you) are involved in a crime (specifically a crime) all random stops (regardless of race) are illegal suspicion-less stops.
So again, most people mentally enslave themselves by thinking that police officers can legally initiate Shokumu Shitsumon randomly, and they imply, “As long as it’s done proportionately to the Japanese-looking majority as well: then statistically random stops would be fine and legal”, but no, according to Police Duties, random stops are illegal, when committed against ANY individual.
Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but yourself can free your mind. 🙂
— Okay, one more reply to this, and we’re done with this thread.
That same MOJ directive which we are discussing says in Article 26:
(Officials Who May Request Presentation of a Passport)
Article 26 An official of a state or local public entity prescribed in Article 23, paragraph (3) of the Act is as follows:
(i) a customs official;
(ii) a public security intelligence officer;
(iii) a narcotics agent;
(iv) an official of municipalities engaged in the administrative affairs relating to the basic resident register (limited to those related to the certificate of residence of foreign nationals pursuant to the provisions of Article 30-45 of the Residential Basic Book Act (Act No. 81 of 1967));.
(v) an official of the public employment security office prescribed in Article 8 of the Employment Security Act (Act No. 141 of 1947).
HJ, please show intellectual honesty by admitting you read Article 26 without realizing Article 26 refers to Article 23 which no longer exists.
Now, it seems you’re focusing on the “住民基本台帳に関する事務 … に従事する市町村の職員」= “an official of municipalities engaged in the administrative affairs relating to the basic resident register” but I’m wisely focusing on the quietly hidden limiter, which in this case is: 「住民基本台帳法 … 第三十条の四十五に規定する外国人住民に係る住民票に係るものに限る。」 = (limited to those related to the certificate of residence of foreign nationals pursuant to the provisions of Article 30-45 of the Residential Basic Book Act”.
You are thus required to go read the 「住民基本台帳法（昭和四十二年法律第八十一号）第三十条の四十五」 to learn what exactly are the 規定する information registration actions which require showing proof of those actions.
Be honest HJ, a few days ago, when you initially referred to that Article 26, did you notice that limiting qualifier about WHICH city hall workers can make the request?
And then, did you actually go search through the 住民基本台帳法 第三十条の四十五 to learn about the very limited specific foreigner-only-fields, about which ADDING OR CHANGING INFO requires proof of that info from the ZairyyKaado?
Also, more importantly to our little debate, did you also find in either law any statements that says something equivalent to “City Hall workers can refuse to print the confirmed-honnin’s Juuminhyou: when the print requester shows a different form of ID instead of the ZairyuuKaado” ?
We’re not talking about the act of adding or changing info in foreigner-only-fields right now, we’re simply talking about making prints, which simply requires you to show ID which confirms your name and address.
Again, as my decades of experience has shown me, the City Hall Shimin-division workers legally accept (from strong people who demand doing it this way) the mere showing of ANY one (1) of the following 15 forms of ID, and the KodomoTeate-division workers admit the same:
Actually, this year I learned one doesn’t need to annually show KodomoTeate any ID at all, ha, as this year their official application instructions admitted they only need the income-proving Shotoku Shoumeisho plus the KodomoTeate’s automatically-semi-completed printed application form. See, whenever they slip up and show the bare minimum, that becomes a mental precedent in my mind giving me confidence that THIS bare minimum is really all we need to provide for them to become legally required to approve our application for the money which is legally ours.
Also HJ, as you can see in the imgur jpeg, notice the city hall workers of all divisions use my tsuushoumei in all their official letters to me (and the official ID cards they send me as well) (Google: “Kanjify Thyself”) an act which “long-time expert” naysayers will often claim is “not allowed by law, they HAVE to write your name in Romaji whenever they write your Tsuushoumei name in Kanji, it’s a RealRomaji+KanjiAlias set, there’s no way to have your Kokuho card appear exactly like a Japanese citizen’s Kokuho card with Kanji only.”
Nope, my Kokuho card having zero romaji on it proves people are wrong about the law. And my Kokuho card also having 昭和** instead of 19** on it proves people are wrong about the law. My Kokuho card appears exactly like a Japanese citizen’s Kokuho card. You can’t tell I am a foreign citizen, when looking at my Kokuho card.
Other things “long-time expert” naysayers will often claim is: “even if an NJ chooses their Japanese spouse’s Surname, for example 鈴木, and even if the NJ then duly notifies their home country’s Embassy and have the official name change done with them and gets a new passport with that new Surname, city hall workers are not allowed by law to write that in Kanji when when they update the information in the area about the NJ which appears in the NJ’s Japanese Koseki Tohon, they HAVE to write the NJ’s new surname in katakana: スズキ.”
Nope, I know three NJ-citizenship people who did the exact above procedure (a Swedish man, an American woman, and a German woman) and the successful result is: each of their respective spouse’s Koseki Tohons have the newly changed NJ’s surname in Kanji, not katakana. Yes, their first and middle names remain written there in Katakana, but their surname no longer appears there in Katakana. Just looking at this Koseki Tohon, instead of assuming the NJ was 100% gaijin, it looks as if the NJ is either a Half who hasn’t applied for Japanese citizenship yet, or at the very least, it looks as if the NJ simply did what they did, namely: the NJ chose their Japanese spouse’s Surname of 鈴木 and was strong enough to convince the city hall workers that if the law doesn’t directly say “Katakana only” this is is not an illegal act. It’s simply an act which goes against the much-regargitated MYTH of “Katakana only” which no actual law states. Do you really think those three city hall shimin divisions are illegally printing Kanji Surnames on NJ areas of J-citizen Koseki’s just to be nice? Nope, these successes show that all the other 99% of people are being fooled by unwritten regurgitations of “the way it is done” and being proud of themselves for being able to rote memorize unverified claims about “the law” which they have heard, without remembering that private individuals have freedom to do whatever ISN’T directly outlawed specifically, and government workers are conversely forced to approve all applications (for prints/money/whatever) except when the law specifically states that reason A, B, or C, can be used to legally decline that application.
Laws about government workers basically state: the government worker can decline applications in the case of A, B, or C. Now a gullible person can be easily fooled by government workers or online regurgitators who imply “…plus D, E, or F, even though unwritten in the law, the law only lists the main reasons to in which they can decline your application.”
Nope, “in the case of A, B, or C” means “in the case of A, B, or C”, that’s it, if the government workers want to legally decline applications for other reasons, such as D, E, or F, the government workers need to vote in legislators who will somehow be motivated to change the law to “in the case of A, B, C, D, E, or F” but until the law is changed, the government worker can ONLY decline applications ONLY in the case of A, B, or C.
And again, back to this question of who can demand the ZairyuuKaado and when: the immigration law states that we must CARRY it (that is the thing which the big scary fine and imprisonment threat is connected to, which by the way, nobody has any link of that penalty ever being even attempted to be applied, hmmm, I wonder why) and it also states that we must show it WHEN requested by an officer WHEN he is obeying the Police Duties law.
The city hall workers can request to see it: WHEN it is actually needed for inputting specific foreigner-only-fields (but there is zero threat fine and imprisonment threat connected to the city hall workers’ request, if you refuse to show your ZairyuuKaado the only penalty is you simply will not be allowed to change that info until you show your ZairyuuKaado.)
I get the feeling that HJ is thinking I’m risking a big fine and imprisonment every time I buy a print of my Juuminhyou by simply showing only my Kokuho card.
Folks, my success in not magical: you should be using your own minds to sufficiently look for power-limiting qualifiers in every higher-law or lower-directive, you should be sufficiently testing out the easy action of declining requests, and to avoid those requests from even coming up in the first place: you should be already immediately showing, from the first moment, one of the many forms of ID which Japanese citizens are required to show.
In life, especially in Japan, you should always be only submitting to the bare minimum of what the laws directly and reality physically forces you to do.
I decided long ago to stop submitting needlessly, when I learned I still get what I want without any needless silly submission, because what I want is not even up to the discretion of some beurocrat. They HAVE to give me my prints since I already firmly showed them my Kokuho card while holding up my old prepaid phone (also bought without showing a ZairyuuKaado, haha), which is why these city hall workers NEVER say “We’re NOT going to print your Juuminhyou because Kokuho isn’t good enough 本人確認 for your racial-appearance and/or nationality”.
I even also always refuse to answer the stupid voluntary “what will this print be used for” question, neither in writing nor verbally. Most folks are are fooled into thinking city hall workers “can refuse making your print if you don’t answer that ‘what for’ question”, ha, I never answer that question.)
The limiting qualifier above about “when city hall workers have the ability to even request seeing your ZaryuuKaado”, which forces one to go read another law as well, to find out the reality which they don’t want you to know, is PERFECTLY analogous to the 職務の執行に当た limiting qualifier in the 出入国管理及び難民認定法, which forces one to go read the 職務の執行法 which legally limits the police officers GREATLY: to only being able to legally initiate shokumu shitsumon when they have a reasonable reason to believe you (specifically you) are involved in a crime (specifically a crime) thus all random stops (regardless of race) are illegal suspicion-less stops.
HJ, have you learned that point yet? Are you thankful for having learned about that here at Debito’s site?
I get the feeling that the intent is to infer: “Since people around AnonOG (or maybe just AnonOG) stupidly think 「人生には、色々な本人確認できることがある」 is correct, when 「人生には色々な本人確認できるものがある」 is better (even though actually, when talking about things in life, we are still in the abstract, we’re not directly pointing to the physical cards in that sentence, but anyway) because AnonymousOG posts have a 1% error-rate of such careless grammatical mistakes (or, at the very least, since AnonymousOG’s spoken-Japanese-language-style copy the spoken-Japanese-gramatical-mistakes of the majority of low-class shita-machi country-bumpkins working in his city hall and living with him) I should thus refuse to admit the 99% correct ideas which AnonymousOG has shared here at Debito.org about: limiting qualifiers which allow us to decline illegal requests, and about the importance of only doing the bare minimum when someone gives us a legal request.
Instead of worrying about irrelevant things like koto versus mono, I hope various folks reply to this concrete question:
#1. Have you personally finally realized there is a limiting qualifier of 職務の執行に当たり in the Immigration law, yes or no.
#2. Have you personally finally realized that requires you to read the strict limitations of the 職務執行法 which limits the police to only initiating shokumu shitsumon when they have a reasonable reason to believe you (specifically you) are involved in a crime (specifically a crime) all random stops (regardless of race) thus are illegal suspicion-less stops, yes or no.
Keep reading each relevant law deeply and testing reality until you can honestly answer Yes to both of those questions.
Finally, here’s the real life-damaging mistake I see HJ and others making in their thinking, which is the big picture which people are forgetting to zoom out sufficiently to realize:
Most people mentally enslave themselves by thinking that police officers CAN legally initiate Shokumu Shitsumon randomly, and thus most people directly or indirectly imply, “As long as the random stops are someday done proportionately to the Japanese-looking majority as well: then all such random stops would be fine and legal.” But no,, no, no, this is a dangerous lack of knowledge about Police Duties Law Article 2. ALL random stops are illegal, when committed against ANY individual.
Please folks, focus on correcting the illegality of government workers illegally threatening people, and focus on correcting the weakness which causes you to needlessly submit to requests-disguised-as-orders which STRONG people living in Japan simply legally decline. 🙂
As Jim said (knowing what a waste of time and energy it is to throw pearls before swine who can’t see the big picture of how to freely walk out of the pig pen) I’ve shared enough on this thread, I’m out!
— Okay, that’s the final comment from you. Thread closed.
AOG, frankly, I am beginning to wonder if you aren’t just an elaborate troll. I referenced section 23 of the law, and you ignored that completely and sent a link to the administrative rules. Read the quote I pasted from the text of the law. Further, you asserted that section 23 has been deleted, but I didn’t mention section 23 of the administrative rules—I referenced section 26 of them, which has not been deleted and confirms my original assertion. Section 23 of the law, section 26 of the administrative rules—get it right.
Your empty rebuttal about the use of こと lacks any substance, and given your apparent inability to distinguish between 法律 and 施行規則, I don’t feel has any credibility either. Your original “proof” was a complete miss that proved MY point, and having been soundly rebutted, you resort to vague anecdotes. Give me a break.
I’m left with assuming that either you are an idiot who aggressively and persistently criticizes what he perceives to be minor slights committed by other regulars (Scipio, Loverilakkuma) while himself unable to compose arguments based on facts, or you are a troll wasting everybody’s time. I think it’s high time you apologized.
— Okay, that’s the final comment from you. Thread closed.
There you go again. I just wanted to ignore your posts because it’s been pointed out to you, numerous times, that your Japanese reading skills are not as good as you think they are. However your disinformation, I believe, could get a newbie into serious trouble, if they went by some of the advice you offer.
You keep continuously mentioning this ‘limiting qualifier’ concept. I must have missed that lecture, when at university. As a matter of fact, I do remember the lectures where we were explicitly and continuously told that, in the legal arena, ‘Opinions can be qualified, but facts should not be’.
You’ve just made the term up and mistaken it for the legal concept of conditional qualification (‘That which is dependent on……..’). Normally I would ignore your misunderstanding, but your misunderstanding could prove very risky for someone following your actions in certain situations.
I’ll try and explain the difference between your made-up concept of ‘limiting qualifiers’ and the actuality of the real legal concept of ‘conditional qualification’ as simply as possible. You are applying your misunderstood term, as if it enables / emancipates / expands the choice of actions available to the citizen / resident, when directly interacting with officials of the state. You’re mistaken.
What it does do, is it limits the actions of state officials by the placing of conditional qualifications – ‘that which is dependent on ‘variable a’, ‘variable b’ and ‘variable c’, all or in part, being in place’ – on them exercising their public duty.
It doesn’t give you the right to say ‘no’ to them and disobey their request. I hope you can see the difference.
Lastly because I don’t want to make this a long post and there’s somebody who writes on Debito – can’t find his/her posts – who clearly does work within the Japanese legal system and therefore can enlighten you better than me, conditional qualification is a very very important legal concept in Japanese law. There are 3 main reasons for this.
(a) Japanese historical jurisprudence and the historical absence of any concept or form of habeas corpus.
(b) The vague wording of Japanese statutes makes the conditional qualification limits placed on public officials, pretty much worthless. Variables A B and C are worded so vague that they become pretty much worthless as conditional limitations.
(c) As accurately commented on by the afore-mentioned person, who clearly has done work in the Japanese legal system, the Japanese supreme court is not there to protect the constitutional rights of ‘kokumin’, it’s there to validate the actions of the Japanese legislative and executive branches. Sorry Debito, I was as happy as most non-Japanese residents, when you won the Otaru hot spring case, but as a moot point, if it had gone further up the legal ladder, I think it would have eventually been thrown out.
This is my last post on this thread. I think a wide variety of options and opinions have been expressed on this thread, that to opine again, would be pointless. Oh, AnonymousOG, stop distorting opinions I have expressed on previous threads. You’ve already had one post taken down because of it. Either you’re English reading comprehensive skills suck as bad as your Japanese reading comprehensive skills, or you are just trolling. In either case, a remedy should be sought.
— Okay, that’s the final comment from you. Thread closed.
As for this: “Sorry Debito, I was as happy as most non-Japanese residents, when you won the Otaru hot spring case, but as a moot point, if it had gone further up the legal ladder, I think it would have eventually been thrown out.”
Well, it went to the Supreme Court of Japan, as high as it can go. Although were suing a city government (Otaru) for negligence (under Article 14 of the Japanese Constitution and the CERD), the suit was dismissed, oddly enough, as lacking a Constitutional basis. For full details, download my book Japanese Only from Amazon for a buck.